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I switched to BCE/CE before I was even aware of the political correctness issue: I had previously found the whole BC/AD confusing, so when I happened upon the new abbreviations in a scholarly source and then looked them up, to me, it made a lot more sense for stylistic reasons.

Here are just a few problems with BC/AD: Any one of these reasons alone wouldn't be enough to argue for a new convention.

When I was a kid, I was always taught to refer to years using BC (Before Christ) and AD (Anno Domini / year of our Lord). That is, BC is usually understood to mean "Before the Common Era" and CE to mean "Common Era," though it is possible to reinterpret the abbreviations as "Christian Era." The simplest reason for using BCE/CE as opposed to AD/BC is to avoid reference to Christianity and, in particular, to avoid naming Christ as Lord (BC/AD: Before Christ/In the year of our Lord). Marking it as the "Christian Era" (or more commonly, the "Common Era") allows the same epoch to be used even though the best calculation for Jesus's birth has changed.

However, I somewhat regularly hear people referring to years as in the CE (Common Era) or BCE (Before the Common Era). Wikipedia, Anno Domini article: , but a few years earlier (i.e., in the somewhat ironic 3–4 B. While Christians make up a very large chunk of the world's population, they are no where near the majority.

And aside from the minor point mentioned in the question that they look a little too alike compared to BC/AD, I think there's a strong argument for stylistic and logical advantages. As the world has also standardized on or at the very least have an alternate calendar (as in many Muslim countries), BCE/CE are modern inventions to avoid Christian-centric notions.

BCE/CE is simply a change in label, designed to The use of BCE/CE could be considered 'political correctness', especially since it is hardly common outside of academic circles.

Anyway, you don't need to worry, BC/AD has not lost at all to the metric system or Kwanzaa, it is still very much what is used and recognized (but I haven't looked at any high school history books lately).

Note that the labeling BC/AD was introduced in the 6th century....

But moreover, there is only one letter of difference between the two terms, whereas with BC and AD, the terms are clearly different and I find it easier to distinguish! BCE/CE usually refers to the Common Era (the years are the same as AD/BC).

Most organizations and political entities, for the sake of convenience, have adopted the Western calendar, but "Anno Domini"/"Before Christ" are meaningless terms.

Modern dates are understood in the Western world to be in the Gregorian calendar, but for older dates writers should specify the calendar used.

Dates in the Gregorian calendar in the Western world have always used the era designated in English as Anno Domini or Common Era, but over the millennia a wide variety of eras have been used with the Julian calendar.

The most commonly used convention in radiocarbon dating. 1950 is the date that the calibration curves were established.

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