(FreedomWire.org) – Reported by the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Francisco Unified School District will stop using the word “chief” in job descriptions.
The reason they are no longer using the word, is respect for American Indians.
In an administrative decision released on Wednesday, the school district decided to retire the term among its 10,000 employees, said spokesperson Gentle Blythe.
“By changing how we refer to our division heads, we are in no way diminishing the indispensable contributions of our district central service leaders.”
It’s a curious move, as “chief” originated in 14th-century France.
c. 1300, “head, leader, captain; the principal or most important part of anything;” from Old French chief “leader, ruler, head” of something, “capital city” (10c., Modern French chef), from Vulgar Latin *capum, from Latin caput “head,” also “leader, chief person; summit; capital city” (from PIE root *kaput- “head”). Meaning “head of a clan” is from 1570s; later extended to headmen of Native American tribes (by 1713; William Penn, 1680s, called them kings). Commander-in-chief is attested from 1660s.
So… English speakers employed an old French word to refer to heads of things. In an unrelated story, it was noticed that tribes had heads. Fast-forward to modern times, when those in power decide that the word primarily describes tribal principals; and, therefore, it must be cast out.
The San Francisco Unified School District ent on to say, “while there are many opinions on the matter, our leadership team agreed that, given that Native American members of our community have expressed concerns over the use of the title, we are no longer going to use it.”