A pet hate
When people being interviewed talk about these people. It’s a neat linguistic device that sets the person being interviewed apart. Its double trick is to also implicitly include the interviewer and audience. We are us and they are them. These people.
People, it’s just PEOPLE. There is no these people, there is just us.
People do stuff. People do stuff we don’t agree with and stuff we wouldn’t do, but they are still people. Before long, these people are sub-categorised further: troubled families, lone parents, the unemployed, immigrants, benefit claimants, disabled people (who could work really…) and so on. One day you are happily listening to these people, the next day you are one of them. And then what?
Despite our many differences, people are just people and should be valued as such, no matter what, even when some of us seem to have lost our way. If we don’t stick to at least that basic humanitarian principle, we are well on our way down the roads signposted prejudice and injustice.