Oh, goody. The Left wants to make another linguistic attitude adjustment. This time, the directive is from the vaunted Associated Press Stylebook, which affirmed in a tweet that it finds the term mistress — used to refer to a “woman in a long-term sexual relationship with, and financially supported by, a man who is married to someone else” — to be both“archaic and sexist.”
We now say not to use the archaic and sexist term "mistress" for a woman in a long-term sexual relationship with, and financially supported by, a man who is married to someone else.
Instead, use an alternative like companion or lover on first reference. Provide details later.
— APStylebook (@APStylebook) May 8, 2020
As with so many other efforts at bowdlerizing the language to conform to the tenets of political correctness, the AP’s recommended substitutes — companion and lover — fail to communicate the same information as mistress. A companion could be a dog, for example. And lover fails to reflect the subtleties of mistress outlined by the AP (i.e., a “kept” woman providing sexual favors for a married man).
Something tells me that the AP’s motivation in this case is less to rid the language of an archaism than it is a reaction to the sexist tendencies it imputes to the word. In the past, the AP and other self-appointed arbiters of language have always hewed to liberal sensibilities in handing down their pronouncements. In August 2018, for example, the Washington Post published a piece in which it sanitized the actions of “Antifa” by referring to the group as “anti-hate protesters.” Never mind that the members of this loosely formed organization behave in unspeakable ways that the Left would condemn if they were carried out by conservatives.