(2006-08-25) — Just days after an international astronomy organization re-classified Pluto as a ‘dwarf planet‘, an association of dwarf astronomers today called on the scientific community to use the term “little planet” instead.
Dwarfism is a medical condition, but most of those who have it prefer to be called ‘little people‘ rather than dwarfs.
“The classification of Pluto as a dwarf planet perpetuates stereotypes and reinforces the historical insensitivity of over-sized astronomers,” said an unnamed source, who noted the popularity of terms like white dwarf, red dwarf, brown dwarf and black dwarf, which refer to kinds of stars.
In related news, a group of black astronomers this week petitioned the International Astronomical Union to change a term which describes the substance thought to make up most of the universe from ‘dark matter‘ to ‘black matter.’
“It’s archaic and somewhat offensive to say ‘dark matter’,” according to an unnamed group spokesman, who added that the term ‘African matter’ was also considered, but rejected as “too Earth-centric and provincial.” — satirical reporting by Scott Ott/ScrappleFace