The word "issue" has different meanings, depending on whether it’s used as a verb or as a noun.
When "issue" is a noun, it refers to current ideas and concerns in government or in a person’s life:
- Global warming is an important issue.
- Gun control is a hotly contested issue between the two major political parties.
- Voters pay attention to the issues during a political campaign before an election.
- There are some important moral issues which cannot be ignored regarding the refugee crisis in Syria and Iraq.
- We’re not sure where the Governor stands on this issue.
- Where do you stand on the issue of abortion?
- Edward deals with important issues as part of his job all day long.
- Pamela has an interest in issues related to childcare.
Sometimes the word "issue" takes on a slightly stronger meaning when talking about a person’s attitudes and personal beliefs, or when there are major differences in opinions that cause problems in relationships.
- My supervisor and I have some issues. (We’re not getting along.)
- Do you have an issue with this? (Do you have an objection to this?)
- Issues in their marriage led Bill and Sophia to divorce.
- They had some issues that couldn’t be resolved.
As a noun, an issue is also a publication of a newspaper or magazine:
- There’s a picture of Adele in today’s issue of the New York Times.
- The latest issue of The Atlantic magazine has a great article about President Obama.
When the word "issue" is a verb, it means to distribute or give out something:
- The county in which I live issues a driver’s license to people who have passed a driving test.
- I was issued a driver’s license.
- The U.S. and state governments issue refund checks to people who have overpaid their taxes.
- The military issues uniforms to new recruits.
- Money is issued by the U.S. mint.
Click here to learn more vocabulary.
Date of publication: February 13, 2017