This archived article was written by: Nathaniel Woodward
The world is full of behaviors and views that simply baffle me. I try my hardest to wrap my head around them, regardless of how foreign or primitive they seem to me, but every now and then something comes up that simply perplexes me and I’m left with my mouth agape and scratching my head. While there are a good many customs I don’t understand, I none-the-less appreciate them for their staying power and tradition, however, something that has popped up, rather emphatically is a disconcerting movement against “political correctness.”
I enjoy words, very much in fact. I particularly love the way a well-written sentence rolls of my tongue so the notion of being “PC”, a trait frowned upon by many once good-natured folk for reasons I have to admit, I do not understand. Most troubling isn’t the dissension from the practice, but the passionate rebellion spearheaded by excessively angry groups who cannot abide a world which does not fit neatly into their philosophical point-of-view.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but I’ve poured over the U.S. Constitution and found nowhere it saying that not being “PC” is a punishable offense. So why would people so angrily push back against the practice of using the correct terminologies of description? I may venture some guesses and I could be resoundingly incorrect, but since we’re talking about it, I’ll have a go anyway.
What I feel is the core-root of the hatred some hold against political correctness is primarily a lack of understanding of what being “PC” actually means. Being politically correct doesn’t mean restricting a person’s right to express themselves in any way, shape or form they see fit but in suggesting that the proper terminology be used by said individual in such a way as to not exclude or inhibit the rights on another.
Perhaps a different reason one may find themselves angrily shouting against the practice is due to a deep and resounding fear the individual has in being held responsible for their words. Sorry pal, if you say something racist, you shouldn’t be angry when you get called a racist. You have every right to say racist things, but you do not have the right to stop others from calling you a racist for it. I get the cultural traditions many were born into may have abided such language and truly am sorry if you are disturbed to learn that using those same adages in common vernacular may not be appropriate.
That’s what confuses me the most, why people become so angry when they get called a racists for saying racists words. They get offended too easily I suppose. I was taught to own up to what I say, to take responsibility for my language and it may be idealist of me to suggest the same of others. If you don’t want to be “PC”, then you have every right to, but the notion that others shouldn’t either simply because you feel insecure is just a little bit silly. I mean, when discussing politics shouldn’t you want to be….correct?