Among the formulas at stake for this new season there are “good morning”, “good evening” or simply “welcome aboard”
The greeting on board must be neutral and reach everyone. So Lufthansa decides to file a classic: passengers sitting in the cabin waiting for take-off can no longer be addressed by saying “sehr geehrte Damen und Herren”, the Italian equivalent of “kind ladies and gentlemen”.
In its place, it will be decided from time to time for more inclusive formulas. It goes without saying that the English version “ladies and gentlemen” will also be discontinued. Bild announced today on the front page of the turning point of the German flag carrier. And the veto will also apply to the Austrian, Eurowings, Swiss and Brussels Airlines branches. “It is important for us to take everyone into consideration when saying goodbye,” confirmed a spokesperson for the airline.
Among the formulas at stake for this new season – as Lufthansa tries to recover after the pandemic earthquake that hit the entire air transport sector to the heart – there are “good morning”, “good evening” or simply “welcome aboard” . Who decides? The head of the cabin.
The new approach is not surprising, on the contrary, it is in step with the times: even in Germany a “politically correct” linguistic step has been sought for some time in an attempt to arrive at a more just society, which fully respects minorities. For example, the country has been debating for a couple of years about the so-called Gendersternchen, the asterisk that fits between genres: an experimentation that is gaining ground, becoming an increasingly widespread habit, even if not yet accepted in the official writing system.
There is also a verb to describe this orthographic attention: “gendern”, in fact, from the German word for “gender”. And the star – which in speech translates into a pronounced pause between the ending of the masculine and feminine gender – is popular in the media, in texts and also in many institutional places. Last April, the case of a student who had taken a bad grade at the University of Kassel for not having used it exploded.
Is it legitimate? Are we moving towards forms of excessive intolerance? As imaginable, the argument divides politics. The green Annalena Baerbock used the asterisk systematically in her electoral book, as indeed the party had done in the program. Armin Laschet, candidate for chancellor of the conservatives, rejected this linguistic option, which many suffer as a disfigurement to the beauty of German, whether spoken or written: “Pronouncing the asterisk is not congenial to my linguistic style – he replied to the journalists of the women’s weekly Brigitte, Angela Merkel’s aspiring successor – From my point of view, if you use it it’s fine. It can be done and should not be prohibited. You can have respect for it, but my language is another ».