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Political Correctness

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Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea

0 posted 06-16-2001 02:38 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

I though this article was interesting:
"IT HAS been a source of prudishness over the past two decades, and the butt of innumerable jokes: but why did political correctness arise in the first place? Stephen Morris, an economist at Yale University, thinks he knows the answer. His analysis* suggests that, from the point of view of its practitioners, political correctness is an entirely rational form of behaviour—although from a broader perspective, it is potentially wasteful. Either way, its days as a social phenomenon may be numbered."

Political Correctness

It's not that I don't think the model is wrong, I think it's correct. What I'm trying to figure out is why is this situation, the situation now, significantly different from a time before there was Political Correctness?


[This message has been edited by Brad (edited 06-16-2001).]

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since 06-01-2000
Posts 2032

1 posted 06-17-2001 03:03 AM       View Profile for fractal007   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for fractal007

I'll give this one a shot, simply because I like this sort of discussion.

I think that enough is enough.  If I go in front of a group of people in an assembly somewhere and say, "each person should have his own pencil" rather than "each person should have their own pencil"[which is GRAMATICALLY incorrect, but still stated as the desired form in Edward A. Dornan and Charles W. Dawe's fourth edition of The Brief English Handbook] it is almost a given that a large number of people in the crowd will be offended.  

I consider myself to fall into the "politically correct" boat as well, in my thinking, though I have no qualms with using the initial statement mentioned in the above paragraph.  If I were to give you an exact name for the belief I hold with regard to the issue of gender/racial/religious equality, it would be egalitarianism.  

The question isn't what wording and lexicon we should be using, but rather what is it we're trying to accomplish and why are we even worried about it?  In my opinion, we live in a society with a deeply held fear that we'll look bad, or that we'll offend someone.  The fear started out as being an ideal of egalitarianism and has now morphed into a shooting squad just looking for someone with insufficient cover over his ass.[notice the fact that I've used a generic "his"]  It's almost like how my father used to be when I'd go to resteraunts with him and the rest of the family.  He'd always be extremely cautious, trying to ensure I didn't spill something.  Thus, he'd have a cautious eye on me every time I went to grab a mouthful from my plate.

It is my belief that it is not language, but rather intention and thought which will accomplish the egalitarian agenda of political correctness.  I can sputter off politically correct language until I'm blue in the face, but if I'm a high ranking member of the KKK it won't change a thing about me.  However, if I'm an egalitarian Christian at heart and I use a generic "his" instead of a politcally correct "their" when giving an instruction to a crowd, I get called the worst Nazi fundamentalist puritanical Christian since Satan decided to conceive of Hitler.

Now I know that last statement was a bit of a hyperbole.  However, it was intended to illustrate what I believe to be the mentality coursing through the veins political correctness as I see it today.

Thus, my position is clear:  It is not the external action which needs to be made egalitarian, but rather the intents, beliefs, and thoughts behind that action.

"If history is to change, let it change. If the world is to be destroyed, so be it. If my fate is to die, I must simply laugh"

-- Magus

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