The New York Times feels Pluto should be downgraded from planet to rock (rock? rock? planet? rock?), a feeling so intense it deserves the full weight of placement on the paper’s esteemed editorial page. The Times thinks that 1) nearing a handful, there are now too many planets for people to keep track of and 2) not making a clear distinction between planet and space flotsam muddies our understanding of what a planet is. Well, the former is ridiculous, but the latter makes sense. In fact, in the interest of clarity, we could propose many more cases where distinctions need to be made.
- J-Lo: Downgrade from superstar to star.
- Heat Wave: Downgrade from news story to conversation topic.
- Richard Gere: Downgrade from sex symbol to AARP spokesperson
- Blog: Downgrade from buzzword to word.
- Democrats: Downgrade from political party to bowling league
- Intelligent Design: Downgrade from theory to claptrap.
- Toyota Prius: Downgrade from car to passenger dustbuster.