Recently, I happened to catch a Fox News commentary that featured most of the top Democratic candidates for president. The eye-catcher was a series of film clips that showed all the top contenders mouthing the “catch phrase” of the day, “Climate change is an existential threat.” One after the other repeated that phrase.

Now, as I only have a bachelor’s degree, I am not big on words of more than two or three syllables — such as “existential threat” — so I got out my Webster’s New 20th Century Dictionary, Unabridged, and looked up “existential.” That read “Of or based on existence.”

Well, that is pretty simple.

But wait! The next word is, “existentialism,” which means “A literary-philosophic cult of nihilism and pessimism, popularized in France after World War II, chiefly by Jean-Paul Sartre: it holds that each man exists as an individual in a purposeless universe, and that he must oppose his hostile environment through the exercise of his free will.”

Now, I understand perfectly.

I wonder how many of those thoughtful Democrats have read that?

Richard Grover, Mason Township

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