Just when I thought there couldn't be more monitoring, here comes the Gatekeepers of Political Correctness. The sneaky ones have found a way to get us to censor ourselves. When we don't censor ourselves, they step in and a series of unfortunate events unfold.
Political Correctness, according to my Google search, is defined as the avoidance of forms of expression or action that are perceived to exclude, marginalize, or insult certain groups of people. That's a nice, safe, scholarly definition. However, according to urbanddictionary.com, political correctness is defined as organized Orwellian intolerance and stupidity, disguised as compassionate liberalism. I like Urban Dictionary's definition much better.
For me, political correctness is the inability to express one's true feelings for fear of offending others, getting fired, or being labeled racist, homophobic and more recently a terrorist. It's a form of censorship. This control of speech lessens the impact of the expression and stifles communication.
I'm not at all for insulting, marginalizing, or being rude and disrespectful, but I am a firm believer that constructive criticism and opinions should be heard. We can't get offended over everything that is said. Eventually, nothing will be said and we'll morph into puppets. Is referring to humans as puppets PC? Would robots be a better word?
In any event, we will transform into entities bearing less than human characteristics that foster the inability to fully share thoughts and opinions and express ideas. Yes, being PC forces everyone to use a bunch of words for no reason at all. I don't like it because women, by nature, are wordy to begin with.
We can't refer to people as fat, short, or old. We can't call people midgets. It's not PC to say Christmas anymore. Christmas trees are now holiday trees. Christmas lights are holiday lights, and don't ever say merry Christmas. It's happy holidays. Christians should be offended that Christian words are being banned to appease non-Christians.
Even more ridiculous, at one point, folks in London were offended over the name Spotted Dick. Some things just need to be said; otherwise, the impact just isn't the same. An attempt was made to change the name of the dish to Spotted Richard, but who wants to order a Spotted Richard? I'll tell you who. Boring people. Hmm_I meant enthusiastically challenged individuals. No one wants to order a Spotted Richard. Spotted Dick is what we want on our menu.
Well, life would be too easy if words were the only issue. However, thoughts and opinions are also under the microscope. Consider the following interview with Juan Williams:
Juan Williams was a journalist at National Public Radio (NPR). He was fired for stating that he gets nervous when he sees Muslims on planes. I don't see why he wouldn't. This is the environment we've created since our alleged war on terror. Considering the number of Muslims who have been profiled and dragged off of airlines simply for being Muslim, why wouldn't he feel uncomfortable sharing a confined space? If that's how he feels, why shouldn't he be allowed to verbalize his feelings?
The NRP stated that Williams' statements were "inconsistent with our editorial standards and practices, and undermined his credibility as a news analyst with NPR."
This is the problem with political correctness. It puts everything under scrutiny; it creates and fuels contention; and prevents people from becoming independent thinkers. The concept of being politically correct accomplishes nothing but hampers the masses from truly expressing what is felt. A true expression requires that the speaker owns his thoughts (Oooops_his/her thoughts). Without true ownership, it's not an authentic thought. It's a watered down version of what the speaker really wanted to say.
Needless to say, being PC has turned us all into enablers. Why would anyone be offended if what is being said is true and correct. Why should we dilute every thought? It's not PC to describe someone as fat, but we spend tons of money trying to correct, control and eliminate all sorts of diseases related to obesity and low self-esteem issues, after the fact.
As usual, just like the Orwellian concept of the Matrix, the real world makes no sense.
As time goes by, I'm sure the list of banned words will continue to grow, and more people will catch hell, as more people become offended. If you ask me, this makes for stressful communicating. It makes me wonder if anything is really being said.
Photo Credit To BS Norrell
Editor-in-Chief's Note: Ebonie Jones is a freelance contributor with MNI Alive