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Political Correctness

Slow Love™

International Captain
"Political Correctness" emerged as a term somewhere in the late 80's - what I believe it was intended to define was, as Bill Maher once described it, "the elevation of sensitivity over truth".

So, in my book - say, attempting to describe a person, but going to great lengths not to mention their ethnic background, for example, "well, he's tall, he's got short curly hair, a narrow nose", instead of "the black guy over there with the green T-shirt and the afro". This might be an example of political correctness.

Another, more serious example might be the reluctance to fund medical research that applies to differences medically between African-Americans and caucasions - there are people that believe that these issues should not be a part of medical research, because it focusses on differences between races. I'd also categorize this as political correctness.

However, I don't believe that not allowing bigotry is political correctness. Because it doesn't elevate sensitivity over truth. Considering racial epithets or slurs as unacceptable in ordinary discourse is a valuable protection for people against racial vilification - and these kinds of deliberately perjorative terms aren't actually "truth" anyway..

Its seems though, that political correctness has become a very broad term that describes different things to different people. What are people's opinions on political correctness?
 

Burpey

Cricketer Of The Year
This thread is going to be flying with opinions, arguing, debating, and name-calling soon :p

I hate political correctness my self. What is wron with saying "that black guy". I'm not discriminating against him, I'm just using his skin colour to point him out. Don't get me started on this actually, it's one of my pet hates.
 

Shounak

Banned
I don't like it myself.. Today at work, I was asked to describe an employee I had worked with before as I did not know her name. I said she was Asian, and I was told that my comment was racist by one of the girls there. I told her it's just as racist as me describing her as a blonde girl, if she was alongside a brunette. That is an example of PC taken too far.

But on a more serious matter. If there are people out there who feel some way about me solely based on my skin colour, I'd prefer they were open about it and just called me "insert any derogatory terms to do with my race, skin colour or anything". Being called these things by bigots does not offend me at all, it just makes the world more transparent.
 

NZTailender

I can't believe I ate the whole thing
Political Correctness is a double edged sword.
One one hand it can show that something isn't acceptable (racial slurs, comments, behaviour) but on the other it can be extremely annoying, or just not logical.
Mainly on principle that someone might take offense, rather than someone has taken offence and it should be stopped.

Okay, maybe I can explain that more clearly.


Example: In America there is a row over a Junior Baseball team (or whatever) using I think an American Indian as a mascot and being called the Redskins (like there is, or were, a few teams in America called this in various sports). A group wanted them to change it because they said it was offensive to Native American Indians, despite the fact the tribe nearest to the town said they were honoured to be the mascot and have a sports team named after them, etc etc.
 

vic_orthdox

Global Moderator
For some reason, "political correctness" doesn't really seem to bother me. I'm one of those people who always thinks afterwards "Aw crap, I shouldn't have said that" and then fret about it for ages, so if I play it safe and just use "politically correct" terms, then I figure that I shouldn't have to beat myself up over what I say as often.

Aw crap, I really shouldn't have posted that
:p
 

_Ed_

Cricket Web: All-Time Legend
I hate the term "political correctness"....it seems almost that whenever anyone says something about another racial or social group and it isn't offensive, someone's going to label it political correctness.

I'd like to ask some of the rednecks who call talkback radio and complain about "(expletive) political correctness gone mad!" to define the term.
 

Slow Love™

International Captain
Yeah, most people don't like political correctness - that's a given. I don't think you get many folks saying, "damn, I just can't get enough of that political correctness!". It's a wholly negative term for most intents and purposes.

I'm curious as to what people think constitutes political correctness - as well as what needs to be stopped, protected, or re-allowed. Oh, and how it gets wielded.
 

Shounak

Banned
_Ed_ said:
I hate the term "political correctness"....it seems almost that whenever anyone says something about another racial or social group and it isn't offensive, someone's going to label it political correctness.

I'd like to ask some of the rednecks who call talkback radio and complain about "(expletive) political correctness gone mad!" to define the term.

Watch it buddy.. Not a very PC term..
 

_Ed_

Cricket Web: All-Time Legend
shounak said:
Watch it buddy.. Not a very PC term..
Sorry, but just every day someone rings up and starts with "I'm not racist, some of my best friends are (race), but...."
 

vic_orthdox

Global Moderator
Slow Love™ said:
Yeah, most people don't like political correctness - that's a given. I don't think you get many folks saying, "damn, I just can't get enough of that political correctness!". It's a wholly negative term for most intents and purposes.

I'm curious as to what people think constitutes political correctness - as well as what needs to be stopped, protected, or re-allowed. Oh, and how it gets wielded.
In terms of how it is wielded, it can be like the term "un-Australian".

It's so subjective, if there's something you disagree with, you can just dismiss it as "political correctness" or "un-Australian" at your own whim.

EDIT: Especially in the Opinion pages of the Hun :D
 
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Shounak

Banned
Ahh the age old .. My best friend's gay..

Too much ***** footing around just referring to someone's nationality or distinctive characteristics they may have really urks me. It's as if referring to me as "dark skinned" is some sort of insult, at which I'm ready to crack if someone "god forbid!!" says it..

You could just imagine a victim describing an attacker using only PC terms.. Why use 3 words when a thesis will do..
 

NZTailender

I can't believe I ate the whole thing
_Ed_ said:
Sorry, but just every day someone rings up and starts with "I'm not racist, some of my best friends are (race), but...."

LOL! THose are so horrible. I swear, one day on our way to Sydney I heard a guy call up and say pretty much exactly what you've said there.

"Don't get me wrong mate, I'm not a racist. My best mate is from Pakistan, but, we're being overrun by Asians and they need to be chucked out, the lot of them."
 

Dasa

International Vice-Captain
vic_orthdox said:
For some reason, "political correctness" doesn't really seem to bother me. I'm one of those people who always thinks afterwards "Aw crap, I shouldn't have said that" and then fret about it for ages, so if I play it safe and just use "politically correct" terms, then I figure that I shouldn't have to beat myself up over what I say as often.

Aw crap, I really shouldn't have posted that
:p
I know exactly what you mean there... I used to tend to do that as well, so now I try to watch what I say around people I don't know.
 

Shounak

Banned
Dasa said:
I know exactly what you mean there... I used to tend to do that as well, so now I try to watch what I say around people I don't know.
I do the exact opposite. I used to ***** foot around and play it safe and use PC terms..

I've found that no-one's really offended by unPC terms, I'm not talking insulting terms of course and not overly discriminating. I think a lot of people see it as a breath of fresh air.. I know I certainly do..
 

BoyBrumby

Englishman
I generally find political correctness is largely a synonym for good manners: you know, treating people equally regardless of hue, gender or orientation. It does get a bad name through practices that make it seem open to reductio ad absurdum arguments; by which I mean job adverts that insist only Portuguese left-handed lesbian wheelchair users need apply & the like.

A personal example I found ridiculous was from my days as a Sociology student, we were given a list of terms that were patriarchal & we should refrain from using, ie "layperson" instead of "layman", which is fair enough but it took it to a ridiculous level as well: we had to say "people in general" instead of "humanity" (presumably because it’s not huwomanity :D ). Obvious this seems a nonsense & sent many pairs of eyes rolling towards heaven. 8-)

To drift slightly, something I'm not comfortable with is use of derogatory terms by groups as a term of pride. I do think it's admirable that black people are trying to reclaim the n-word & gays similarly adopt "queer", but to me it encourages their use among the unenlightened & is ultimately self-defeating. An example is the team currently at the top of the Fantasy Premier League; they're called "Missa's Mighty Yids". Now I presume the manager is a Tottenham fan (for non-UK posters Tottenham Hotspur are a Association Football team with a traditionally large Jewish following & were often abused as "The Yids") but his surname (Sweeney) doesn't sound Jewish. Is it ok for a non-Jewish Tottenham fan to call his team "Yids"? I don't know. It's at best a grey area, so I personally think such terms should be confined to the linguistic rubbish tip.
 

Tom Halsey

International Coach
Political correctness is one of my pet hates. In all the public exams in any of the Sciences, if some people do an experiment for the sake of the question, there's always, without fail, more black people than white people who dot he experiments. That annoys me.
 

Neil Pickup

Cricket Web Moderator
Tom Halsey said:
Political correctness is one of my pet hates. In all the public exams in any of the Sciences, if some people do an experiment for the sake of the question, there's always, without fail, more black people than white people who dot he experiments. That annoys me.
"Mohammad is testing severals chemicals to see which causes the biggest explosion..."

Now, I really get the feeling I shouldn't have posted that...
 

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