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Dog-whistle politics


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Dog-whistle politics is political messaging employing coded language that appears to mean one thing to the population of the general public at large while also simultaneously having an additional, different, or more specific resonance for a targeted subgroup. The analogy is to a dog whistle, whose ultrasonic tone is heard by dogs but inaudible to humans.

The term is often confused with code words used in some specialist professions, but can be distinguished in that dog-whistling is specific to the political realm, and the messaging referred to as the dog-whistle has an understandable meaning for a general audience, rather than being incomprehensible.

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