Trump administration gives CDC list of banned words, including ‘science-based,’ ‘fetus,’ ‘transgender’

Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the very agency tasked with saving and protecting the lives of the most vulnerable, are now under order by the Trump administration to stop using words including “vulnerable” in 2018 budget documents, according to The Washington Post.

In a 90-minute briefing on Thursday, policy analysts at the nation’s leading public health institute were presented with the menu of seven banned words, an analyst told the paper. On the list: “diversity,” “fetus,” “transgender,” “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “science-based” and “evidence-based.”

The list:

  • science-based
  • diversity
  • fetus
  • transgender
  • vulnerable
  • evidence-based

Alternative word choices reportedly were presented in some cases. For instance, in lieu of “evidence-based” or “science-based,” an analyst might say, “CDC bases its recommendations on science in consideration with community standards and wishes,” the source said. But those working on the Zika virus’s effect on developing fetuses may be at a loss for appropriate – or acceptable – words.

The reaction in the room was “incredulous,” the longtime CDC analyst told the Post. “It was very much, ‘Are you serious? Are you kidding?'”

As news of the word ban spreads at the CDC, the analyst expects growing backlash.

“Our subject matter experts will not lay down quietly,” the unnamed source said. “This hasn’t trickled down to them yet.”

“The assertion that HHS has ‘banned words’ is a complete mischaracterization of discussions regarding the budget formulation process,” said Health and Human Services spokesman Matt Lloyd in a statement to CNN. “HHS will continue to use the best scientific evidence available to improve the health of all Americans. HHS also strongly encourages the use of outcome and evidence data in program evaluations and budget decisions.”

Others, outside the agency, are already responding with their own choice words.

“To pretend and insist that transgender people do not exist, and to allow this lie to infect public health research and prevention is irrational and very dangerous,” Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, said in a written statement.

“The Trump administration is full of dangerous science deniers who have no business near American public health systems like the CDC,” she continued. “They are actually going to kill Americans if they do not stop.”

Calling the order “reckless” and “unimaginably dangerous,” Dana Singiser, vice president of public policy and government affairs for Planned Parenthood Federation of America, also weighed in.

“You cannot fight against the Zika virus, or improve women’s and fetal health, if you are unable to use the word ‘fetus.’ You must be able to talk about science and evidence if you are to research cures for infectious diseases such as Ebola,” Singiser said. “You must be able to acknowledge the humanity of transgender people in order to address their health care needs. You cannot erase health inequities faced by people of color simply by forbidding the use of the words ‘vulnerable’ or ‘diversity’.”

“Here’s a word that’s still allowed,” added Rush Holt, chief executive officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. “Ridiculous.”

The Office of Management and Budget did not immediately respond to CNN’s request for comment.


  • Manley Chesterson

    ohhhhhhhhh here we go………….I sense more hilariously uncoordinated, unprofessional, costume themed, dolled up, embarrassing riots/protests/marches of our Countries most offended snowflakes lmao

  • Translated

    Like we used to tell our children when they were toddlers-use your words. Here’s some alternatives: Science-based = The people funding our study told us to say this. Fetus = Unborn child. Transgender = Insane person.

  • Jeff Woehrle

    “Transgender” is a mental condition.

    Your ‘feelings’ do not outweigh simple biological fact. You are male, or you are female.

    Live your life as you please, but don’t expect me to participate in your fantasy.

    • Translated

      Amen Jeff. The simple fact that a growing number of people are falling for this nonsense further proves the extension of mental illness. Sick in the head and heart.

  • Psych PhD

    Interesting Lloyd Schmucatelli, but a number of comments HAVE been banned and flagged. I must assume that the alt-left is monitoring language and opinions just as much as they are claiming that conservatives are doing. If you don’t agree with the current day verbage and ideology, then you are the enemy and there can be no rational public discourse.

    Prior to the revision of the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistic Manual) used by the mental health providers to define and treat the gazillions of mental and behavioral disorders, gender dysphoria (transgenderism) was treated as a mental/behavioral disorder. It is not supported by DNA analysis to be anything other than the confusion that it is. When this disorder is examined, clients typically present with other mental health or behavioral issues. The client has no idea whom they are or what is expected of them so they make something up that will excuse their behaviors and give them an identity that they believe is unique or privileged, according to current social climes.

    It is very dangerous for any parent of a child to identify that child with a gender that they are not born with (i.e. male/female) and pediatricians and mental health providers are beginning to see the dire consequences of this mindless practice. By treating gender dysphoria as something that is normal destroys any hope of treatment to aid a client with all of the other mental and behavioral disorders that these people suffer from.

    Digging deeper into this fake news reveals that certain language is being altered for purposes of budget proposals and reporting. The President has not banned the public use of any language and the word, “banned,” is being used as an incendiary to upset Generation Why. Triggly Puff must be having an aneurysm, by now.

  • Rich Lyons

    Dear Donald,

    Our amazing diversity includes transgender people who by all science & evidence-based criteria have become valuable assets and have earned all entitlements of society despite their vulnerable beginnings as a fetus! Donald Trump censorship in America will NEVER be tolerated and you just guaranteed that these words will be trending on the internet for a long time to come. Donald, it’s finally time for you to read the Constitution of this nation – paying very close attention to the first amendment of the document. The rest of us must stand up and fight censorship whenever and wherever it rears its ugly head!!! This order cannot stand as it’s an affront to freedom!!!

    • That was easy

      Funny how your amazing diversity calls people that have different views than yours bigots, racists, homophobes, and xenophobes. Your word ‘fetus’ de-humanizes the growing child within a mother. It sounds a lot less barbaric to say a fetus was aborted, versus an unborn child was killed. Wordsmith all you want, people with insight and truth see right through it all.

    • Sick Of Snowflakes

      It’s so funny that you write about censorship when I am required (by Law in some States) to use the proper pronouns when addressing any individual and that my refusal to submit to this minority-based ridiculousness is viewed as “violence.’

      There are two genders. Period. Whatever else someone wants to identify as is their own business and their own problem. I shouldn’t be required to censor my own speech to create the warm-and-fuzzy “tolerance” that’s demanded by a very small minority. Get over yourselves, every last one of you. If you think you’re that special, fine. Take your very special selves to North Korea or Afghanistan where they welcome dissenters with various implements.

  • Bonnie

    This was confirmed earlier today to be completely false so why is this story still up. Better yet why are all of the news stories lately later proven to be false. Guess they hope people read it then don’t look again.

  • Think Positive

    I’m okay with the ban of these six words. They’re all overused, and have been for the past several years. When words are overused, they start to seem meaningless. The news media always gets on a roll with a certain word and overuses it. I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed. Break out the THESAURUS.

  • Liam G

    I’m guessing that this is likely fake news, especially considering that the people staffing the office this allegedly came out of are mainly holdovers from the last administration.

    • Really?

      You’ve obviously have never had a conversation with one of the flat-earth crowd. Try it some time – puts a new spin on insanity.

Comments are closed.