Director, Commonwealth Policy Center

The Associated Press is updating its 2017 writing guidelines for journalists and conservatives are crying foul. The AP stylebook provides universal rules for journalists when it comes to punctuation, capitalization and using certain words over others. But in this edition it tells writers to avoid words like "pro-life," "migrant," "refugee," "Islamist" and "terrorist." Instead of saying pro-life, it says to use the word "anti-abortion." Instead of saying migrant or refugee, it tells writers to say "people struggling to enter Europe." It says to avoid the words Islamist or terrorist and in their place to use the word "militant." The style changes don't make for clearer, more precise writing. Instead, they appear to push a political agenda. And we should be deeply concerned because whoever controls the definitions wins the debate.