The NYT story about Dr. Jill Biden and Mr. Whoeverthe Fuckeheis manages to give the impression that academics appropriated the title "doctor" from physicians, when in fact it's the other way around, historically.
It's a Latin term borrowed into English (probably via French) and the root word means "teacher," so claiming it's inappropriate for a Doctor of Education to use the term is some especially rich mansplaining nonsense.
The original "doctors" as the term was used in English were learned in religion, and licensed to teach religion but it came to apply to a wider range of knowledge, including knowledge of medicine and other academic topics, by 1400.
There's a great deal more history involved in how the titles became formalized, but it recognized the highest level of accomplishment in a given field, which again, was not medicine. The term "doctor" in no way has its origins in medicine.
And as an aside, it's not "old fashioned" to suggest an Ed.D. shouldn't use the term "doctor." It's just sexist. My father holds an Ed.D., is two years older than the WSJ op-ed author, and has literally never been questioned on using "Dr." GEE, I WONDER WHAT THE DIFFERENCE IS?
(Gentle readers, I do not, in fact, wonder what the difference is. Men don't condescendingly object to my father's title because he is, well, a man.) The WSJ should really issue a corrective or withdraw this bigoted piece. Signed, a Doctor of Philosophy.
Here's the OED with the earliest known English usage--for doctors of the Church.
And here's the OED showing its development as a title for someone who has achieved the highest degree from a university in a particular field (and how honorary degrees stem from that, eventually). Doctors here include "Divnity" (theology) "Physick" (Medicine) "Musick" and "Laws."
One last OED screenshot. Piers Plowman refers to a "doctor of death" but the less ambiguous "doctor of Physick" is a bit later. Teachers preceded physicians in English usage, and MDs have never held exclusive claim to the title. Deal with it, WSJ (and NYT). /fin
(I should probably have linked it: This is the NYT story that tries to offer a counterpoint to the original WSJ editorial, but ends up reinforcing the idea that academics are newcomers to the title: nytimes.com/2020/12/12/us/… )

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