To control thoughts, control the language.
“Tear gas” or “pepper spray” has been renamed “chemical munitions” and “chemical weapons” by activists who participate in street riots. They have created a web site titled “Portland Chemical Weapons Library”.
The chemical library contains photos of the spent munitions found in Portland, along with the make and model, manufacturer, safety data and specifications.
Not a lot of people have been super concerned about use of “Pepper spray”. But surely, they will be upset to learn the police are using “chemical weapons” depositing “chemical munition” by products in the “environment”. And that is the goal of renaming “Pepper spray” to “chemical weapon”.
The scientist seems oblivious that he comes across not as a scientist but a political activist (which the news article points out). Nor does he realize these actions destroy trust and credibility for all scientists.
The purpose of this effort is to redefine “Pepper spray” to “chemical munitions” and “chemical weapons” so that the riot enthusiasts can potentially persuade the city to ban their use, enabling more uncontrollable “mostly peaceful protests”. This is all about mob rule.
Changing common language to mean something else is an every day pattern in propaganda messaging. Think of the hundred plus year old use of the “Ok” symbol formed with the thumb and fingers. After Trump was elected, a group of outcasts on the 4Chan social media group created a bizarre meme that this common hand symbol means “WP”, which means “White Power”. Soon, cancel culture took hold as began seeking out individuals using a long standing “OK” symbol, to mean “OK” – and accusing them of white supremacy.
Redefining the language is common and surrounds us every day.