"PC complaints now range from the sublime to the ridiculous, and they are stifling the honest assessment, and debate, of issues in our lives." Jay Karlson
Freedom? I'd call it subtle tyranny! Honestly, I'm not sure what, let alone anything positive or productive, political correctness has accomplished thus far: We're more sensitive (to our own feelings), we talk less to each other (fear of offending), and we have more to argue about (emerging labels like "hater" to call those who don't agree with us and blocking capabilities).
Years ago, I wrote on this topic for another site, and I absolutely love the story I begin with so you should check it out: Prejudice and Discrimination; A Necessary Evil.
I can't even begin to explain how annoying it is to be expected to know the rules before you think, act, or speak. There isn't just one set of rules for political correctness. Nope! There are each person's individual and personal rules that will be severely punished if offended. It seems like every day brings another case of offense and a new sensitivity is born. Add it to the list boys...
If you say something out of innocence (or heaven forbid ignorance), it'll cost you. It can ruin your reputation overnight, it can cause you to lose a job, and get sued over. It's the one phenomena where there is no room for error- not even human error!
The first time I felt that political correctness impeded on our natural freedoms, was when I went into a Starbuck's to order my usual. The Barista handed over the Americano and wished me a 'Merry Christmas'. Suddenly, a look of terror washed across her face, as if she'd struck the button of mass destruction. She quickly corrected herself, and said, 'I mean Happy Holidays.'
Important topics are off the table. Either we stick to the topic of weather (where no one is offended) or we stay within very limiting boundaries.
In some instances, our friends aren't even our friends, and people become unrecognizable when an issue of political correctness rears it's ugly head. I remember when my husband got his first government internship and made friends with an African American gentleman, and fellow co-worker. They joked, they talked for months.
One day my husband was telling this friend about one of his silly life stories, and the guy says, 'You're shitting me'. My husband replies (his goofy self), 'I wouldn't shit you, you're my favorite terd'.
When my husband and his "friend" ultimately learned they would be competing for the same job post internship, this man claimed my husband called him a terd because he was black. My husband was released from his internship immediately. It's a weapon, folks. It's no longer used for good or protects good people.
Political correctness is not only an impotent social guideline, it's damaging. It has driven a wedge between people. The hope that it would bring us closer together, is depleted, and now replaced with a social ugliness.
When it comes to political correctness, the first to point the finger, is always the winner! People are rewarded for being offended.
If you look at how political correctness took hold, it's astonishing how it still maintains a place in society at all. Born out of sensitivity training, recent changes in the interpretation of federal anti-discrimination statutes, and changes in parenting styles that coddle the younger generations, it not only exists, it flourishes. And it's a headache. It's an example of how good intentions went completely wrong.
For instance, legal cases where political correctness is involved in some way, are typically illegitimate complaints or simple misunderstandings. Because of this, people are more likely to call up a lawyer than talk it out amongst each other. People are quicker to blame than discuss a solution...together.
It's a tall order to be responsible for others' mental stability or sensitivities. Before you know it, you've created an environment easily exploited. No further understanding is reached because it focuses on one person's claimed sensitivity rather than how each person involved is feeling, or real intentions. In other words, it's very one-sided, sparring people against each other.
We are meant to be different, and not flock together at times. I watch my kids who even at a young age naturally gravitate to some kids and not others- not based on color, but just an internal preference. I watched birds in a field today: Two different types of birds (Seagulls and Blackbirds) and both types were completely separate. This doesn't suggest segregation, rather it suggests there's nothing wrong with having preferences, and not to uphold unrealistic expectations that we should love everyone equally. Our internal radar and natural discernment are crucial traits.
“At first, they'll only dislike what you say, but the more correct you start sounding the more they'll dislike you.” Criss Jami
I'm passionate about no-nonsense self-improvement. Too many of us are plagued by faulty thought patterns- I aim to change that!