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Post Reply The Psychological Allure of Hating Political Correctness
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So I'm back... Briefly.

In and out really. :P

BUUUUUUT on my quick jaunt through, I figure I'll say hello to all of you that I may have missed over the past few months, and drop a nice interesting topic for discussion in here as well.

So Scientific American Mind recently (as of today actually) posted its final part in this interesting 3 part series on why Donald Trump is such a popular candidate for the US primaries. Although in previous parts they discussed his frankness, and how an unexpected statement tend to psychologically ring true more so than the expected, this part dealt with an interesting intersection on political correctness, and how both conservatives and liberals seem to be speaking of two separate things while discussing PC, and how they both sides may be a mixture of right and wrong about the issue.

http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/psysociety/decoding-trump-mania-the-psychological-allure-of-hating-political-correctness-part-3/

Give it a read and feel free to discuss.
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I don't think much of it people hate political correctness because someone says something harmless like for example "That's Gay" and every political correct person goes OMFG HOMOPHOBE or beats on the person or just crys about it.

Thats why i think people hate it alot of the time it's just crying over spilt milk
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Posted 9/9/15
Look, I consider myself to be liberal and I try and be polite; but where do you draw the line?

It's the same reason why I don't get cultural appropriation in a way; obviously one should be respectful of all cultures...for example, I do agree with unless you're a Hindu, don't wear those bindi dots. Unless you're Native American, you look like a joke wearing a headdress, like those idiots at Coachella I see pictures of.

But what if you decide to wear a kimono because you like the fabric or print? Then you have someone who'd say you're a racist. True Story: I had an idiot at work say I'm appropriating Asian culture because I read manga and I should stop.
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This article felt like it was written from a restricted point of view in order to narrow the discussion into the pieces they believe they can contest and pretend that the other pieces don't exist. Sort of like a strawman by omission. Essentially, "Political Correctness" goes much further than the author of that piece implies. The modern breadth of political correctness encompasses the mundane and respectful and goes deep into trivial, contradictory idea policing.

For example, we have the fairly recent pushback against micro-aggressions which throws up the yellow tape over the incredibly mundane. These include statements like "Where were you born?", "I don't believe in race", "America is a melting pot", "I believe the most qualified person should get the job", "Affirmative Action is racist" etc (all examples from UCLA's policy on microaggressions). While some of the suggestions in UCLA's policy surround just being a decent person, these barriers on simple language get ridiculous, and infantalizing minorities because you feel like they will be offended by saying something so minor is more offensive than most of the listed "microaggressions".

Further, political correctness can often work alongside turning things into banned discussions. The most notable example would be that whenever someone speaks out about the idea of rape culture, they immediately get labeled as a rape apologist and sometimes not allowed to speak because their ideas are harmful or offensive. This idea that opposing viewpoints that don't fall into the accepted political correct way of thinking should be pushed aside and eliminated is ridiculous and harmful.

I for one welcome the idea of someone speaking candidly and honestly without worrying about these superficial barriers, especially in the field of politics which is so often muddled down with pandering and lies. However, unfortunately, Trump simply doesn't have the well thought out and reasonable viewpoints that would be needed from such a candidate so really all it boils down to is Trump being obnoxious and ridiculous on TV....
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sundin13 wrote:

This article felt like it was written from a restricted point of view in order to narrow the discussion into the pieces they believe they can contest and pretend that the other pieces don't exist. Sort of like a strawman by omission. Essentially, "Political Correctness" goes much further than the author of that piece implies. The modern breadth of political correctness encompasses the mundane and respectful and goes deep into trivial, contradictory idea policing.

For example, we have the fairly recent pushback against micro-aggressions which throws up the yellow tape over the incredibly mundane. These include statements like "Where were you born?", "I don't believe in race", "America is a melting pot", "I believe the most qualified person should get the job", "Affirmative Action is racist" etc (all examples from UCLA's policy on microaggressions). While some of the suggestions in UCLA's policy surround just being a decent person, these barriers on simple language get ridiculous, and infantalizing minorities because you feel like they will be offended by saying something so minor is more offensive than most of the listed "microaggressions".

Further, political correctness can often work alongside turning things into banned discussions. The most notable example would be that whenever someone speaks out about the idea of rape culture, they immediately get labeled as a rape apologist and sometimes not allowed to speak because their ideas are harmful or offensive. This idea that opposing viewpoints that don't fall into the accepted political correct way of thinking should be pushed aside and eliminated is ridiculous and harmful.

I for one welcome the idea of someone speaking candidly and honestly without worrying about these superficial barriers, especially in the field of politics which is so often muddled down with pandering and lies. However, unfortunately, Trump simply doesn't have the well thought out and reasonable viewpoints that would be needed from such a candidate so really all it boils down to is Trump being obnoxious and ridiculous on TV....


I love that answer. I do agree the article is restricted, but it's restriction also speaks, to me, of a certain professionalism that is lacking from many other articles and sources that write on the subject, though, blow back directed towards, let's be frank - the tumblr crowd, has been mounting in the past few months, if not the last year.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/22/opinion/sunday/judith-shulevitz-hiding-from-scary-ideas.html?_r=0

https://reason.com/blog/2015/08/11/how-trigger-warnings-maker-college-stude

I also think that the restraint also helps to keep the article somewhat focused and within a set length as per the blog format.

I also appreciate the fact that it does seem a bit more balanced without focusing on specifics as other articles have, because the other articles seem to point to individual issues, when, it's somewhat a systemic problem at the heart of dealing with these issues such as racism, sexism, etc.
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My main issue with the "political correctness" debate is that I'm disappointed that the term itself is being used to describe the kind of vicious shaming for trivial things that we've been seeing so much recently. I feel as though the term has undergone some heavy pejoration over the past couple years. Political correctness used to be something to respect. It meant what Oxford says it does: simple tact and respect for other people.

I agree that it's ridiculous to expect someone never to say something you might find offensive. Polite society is built on understanding. What someone interprets as an insult often isn't meant as one, and if you take offense to a particular thing someone says, it's perfectly fine to tell them so (politely!), and if they're a decent person they'll probably apologize and keep it in mind. It's downright tyrannical to feel outrage about something that hasn't even been said yet, and try to censor people from saying it in all circumstances just because it can offend someone. There's a point at which political correctness just turns into bullying, and unfortunately, in our modern lexicon, that's been folded into the term itself.

It's the broad spectrum of the term that makes political correctness such a - excuse the pun - political issue. Politicians can capitalize on the ambiguity to sound like they're in the right no matter which side they're arguing for, when really, for the most part, they're not even disagreeing. Most people aren't self-entitled censor tyrants or boorish hate-mongers. Most people, given the chance, will treat others with appropriate respect naturally, because that's how our culture (and for the most part, our species) works. The political correctness issue is only an issue because it allows people in the limelight to rile up their audience. They make use of a false binary to paint their opposition as "bad" or "wrong", and because their arguments on their own are usually sound, groupthink gets people to buy into it. Except for those who really do intentionally offend others or try to shove their disgruntlement down everyone's throats, it's propaganda and nothing more.
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Posted 9/9/15 , edited 9/10/15

serifsansserif wrote:
So Scientific American Mind recently (as of today actually) posted its final part in this interesting 3 part series on why Donald Trump is such a popular candidate for the US primaries. Although in previous parts they discussed his frankness, and how an unexpected statement tend to psychologically ring true more so than the expected,


Think the Daily Show said it best: "He's bravely come forward and declared himself as our first openly A**hole candidate."

He's spent seven years being a cartoon character on a NBC reality show, and now he thinks that being a cartoon character in politics gets you elected. Uh-uh. There's a difference between an educated gadfly and an uneducated jerk, and of the two, Trump has never particularly given us confidence about his education, background, sensitivity, taste, or world experience. That would be the Jerk category.
If it's "colorful" and "brass-tacks frankness" we wanted, four years ago, we thought no one would be stopping Chris Christie right about now, but...looks like that we crossed that bridge before we came to it. Seems it came down to a matter of character.

Meanwhile, nobody seems to have noticed that VP Joe Biden is deservedly starting to establish himself against Hillary in the Democratic numbers, and...you want colorful frankness? Get ready for the October debates.
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Posted 9/9/15
allure? i just think it's annoying and too much work and too much i-care-what-u-think-about-what-i-say
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Posted 9/9/15
Interesting. Enjoyed the article. Definitely agree with the dangers of hive mind/mob rule. The very origins of democracy showcase this. And those "politically correct racists" are so frickin' pervasive among champagne socialists.
Not gonna support Trump tho. I'm still socialist. Cos I'm still proletarian.
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Political correctness is necessary when circumstances arise in which precise use of language to formally convey ideas present themselves. Indeed, the purpose of being politically correct should be to make the discussion of ideas easier. We have huge issues with grand, sweeping words such as: racism, democracy, freedom, beauty, justice, etc. These words are too broad to do any work on their own. They've been used beyond the point of their exhaustion and are no longer significant or powerful or expressive when used alone. Political correctness ensures that ideas are expressed clearly and precisely so that people don't waste time talking past one another.

Obviously, there are times when pointing out political incorrectness is frivolous and unnecessary. Everyday conversations come to mind. When you know what the other dude means and you just point out a colloquial usage of a word or phrase with no purpose of clarifying anyone's points or building on anyone's expression of an idea, that's just unnecessary and annoying.

Yeah, you might not have any use for political correctness when going about most of your daily activities, but it should not be dismissed as completely useless just because it isn't often needed. When it is needed, nothing else can replace it.
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Posted 9/9/15

Morbidhanson wrote:

Political correctness is necessary when circumstances arise in which precise use of language to formally convey ideas present themselves. Indeed, the purpose of being politically correct should be to make the discussion of ideas easier. We have huge issues with grand, sweeping words such as: racism, democracy, freedom, beauty, justice, etc. These words are too broad to do any work on their own. They've been used beyond the point of their exhaustion and are no longer significant or powerful or expressive when used alone. Political correctness ensures that ideas are expressed clearly and precisely so that people don't waste time talking past one another.


I feel like Political Correctness tends to do the opposite: It obfuscates the ideas and issues behind semantic backflips. It encourages people to step softly and beat around the bush when it comes to sensitive subjects instead of taking the easy straightforward approach. This isn't inherently negative, but I struggle to understand how political correctness makes discussion of ideas easier and ensures people don't waste time talking past one another.

Its kind of like PR speak in a way, but usually PR speak for social issues:
"Affirmative action isn't racist, its just a genetically inclined selective system operating on the basis of presumed advantages based on aggregates of wealth distribution by genetic heritage! Simple really..."
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Posted 9/9/15 , edited 9/9/15

sundin13 wrote:

I feel like Political Correctness tends to do the opposite: It obfuscates the ideas and issues behind semantic backflips. It encourages people to step softly and beat around the bush when it comes to sensitive subjects instead of taking the easy straightforward approach. This isn't inherently negative, but I struggle to understand how political correctness makes discussion of ideas easier and ensures people don't waste time talking past one another.

Its kind of like PR speak in a way, but usually PR speak for social issues:
"Affirmative action isn't racist, its just a genetically inclined selective system operating on the basis of presumed advantages based on aggregates of wealth distribution by genetic heritage! Simple really..."


I attribute a lot of senseless arguments to not treading lightly in the beginning. Make no mistake, there is the real need to directly address issues, but there is also the need to sort of ease into the discussion and wait until you're sure the other side is listening. It is less about beating around the bush and more about being tactful. Usually, people won't even listen to someone's argument if the opening line offends them or something. Granted, you can't please everyone, but stumbling over a poorly-worded phrase has the potential to alienate the side you are trying to convince and they will never let it go.

There are good ways to go about being tactful and bad ways. The speakers and listeners each have to do their part for the discussion to go smoothly. Correctness is like a form of good manners. You can't pay so much attention to it that you don't end up talking about anything, yet you can't just ignore it and expect people to listen. There's some balancing to be done.
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Posted 9/9/15

Morbidhanson wrote:


sundin13 wrote:

I feel like Political Correctness tends to do the opposite: It obfuscates the ideas and issues behind semantic backflips. It encourages people to step softly and beat around the bush when it comes to sensitive subjects instead of taking the easy straightforward approach. This isn't inherently negative, but I struggle to understand how political correctness makes discussion of ideas easier and ensures people don't waste time talking past one another.

Its kind of like PR speak in a way, but usually PR speak for social issues:
"Affirmative action isn't racist, its just a genetically inclined selective system operating on the basis of presumed advantages based on aggregates of wealth distribution by genetic heritage! Simple really..."


I attribute a lot of senseless arguments to not treading lightly in the beginning. Make no mistake, there is the real need to directly address issues, but there is also the need to sort of ease into the discussion and wait until you're sure the other side is listening. It is less about beating around the bush and more about being tactful. Usually, people won't even listen to someone's argument if the opening line offends them or something.

There are good ways to go about being tactful and bad ways.


Okay, I can agree with that. I've said before that the main problem with Donald Trump's approach (ignoring his ridiculous politics) is his lack of tact. I guess it kind of boils down to how you are using "political correctness" as it does have a lot of uses. It can be used as a way to ease into a sensitive subject, it can be used as a way to discuss something respectfully, it can be used as a way to glamorize important issues, it can be used as a way to silence certain issues or it can be used as a minefield to make any normal person virtually unable to speak about certain issues. Some of these uses are positive and others are negative...
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Posted 9/9/15 , edited 9/9/15

sundin13 wrote:


Okay, I can agree with that. I've said before that the main problem with Donald Trump's approach (ignoring his ridiculous politics) is his lack of tact. I guess it kind of boils down to how you are using "political correctness" as it does have a lot of uses. It can be used as a way to ease into a sensitive subject, it can be used as a way to discuss something respectfully, it can be used as a way to glamorize important issues, it can be used as a way to silence certain issues or it can be used as a minefield to make any normal person virtually unable to speak about certain issues. Some of these uses are positive and others are negative...


Trump is just....I don't know. I don't think he should be president, that's all.

Taking the pains to completely ignore political correctness doesn't actually ensure clarity of ideas or added accuracy to one's statements. Just as being overly correct can cloud the meaning and purpose of a phrase, stripping it all down to be as blunt as possible can also distort meaning. There's a line between being honest and being painfully blunt, almost intentionally offensive.

I don't like any of the presidential candidates this time around.
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Posted 9/9/15 , edited 9/9/15

Morbidhanson wrote:


sundin13 wrote:


Okay, I can agree with that. I've said before that the main problem with Donald Trump's approach (ignoring his ridiculous politics) is his lack of tact. I guess it kind of boils down to how you are using "political correctness" as it does have a lot of uses. It can be used as a way to ease into a sensitive subject, it can be used as a way to discuss something respectfully, it can be used as a way to glamorize important issues, it can be used as a way to silence certain issues or it can be used as a minefield to make any normal person virtually unable to speak about certain issues. Some of these uses are positive and others are negative...


Trump is just....I don't know. I don't think he should be president, that's all.

Taking the pains to completely ignore political correctness doesn't actually ensure clarity of ideas or added accuracy to one's statements. Just as being overly correct can cloud the meaning and purpose of a phrase, stripping it all down to be as blunt as possible can also distort meaning. There's a line between being honest and being painfully blunt, almost intentionally offensive.


Trump as president would be an absolute trainwreck. I'm personally rooting for Bernie Sanders who seems blunt and honest, but can operate with tact and actually seems to have the politics to back it all up.

In all likelihood, Hillary is probably going to get elected which seems like an absolute nightmare...
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