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Post Reply In Defense of Political Correctness
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Posted 2/24/16
The problem with political correctness is that it's proponents act as if there's some universal standard which we should all be aware of and adhere to. Sure MOST people are against rape, serial killing, drug addiction, fascism, and child molestation but some aren't, and tend to site religion as their justification but that's a topic for another discussion. Let me focus on the idea of trying to offend as few people as possible. Even if your joke as deemed inoffensive by 99% of the people who heard it that'd still leave 60 million people on this planet offended. And since what offends people will vary by context, age, sex, occupation, race, orientation, religion, locale and a dozen other things; it seems like pandering to that 1% to go out of one's way to be PC. And that seems odd in a society that went with majority rule
runec 
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Posted 2/24/16

zangetsushi wrote:
Close. The 80's were all lollipop farts because NOTHING HAPPENED.


Nothing happened in the 80s? >.>
Posted 2/24/16

runec wrote:


zangetsushi wrote:
Close. The 80's were all lollipop farts because NOTHING HAPPENED.


Nothing happened in the 80s? >.>


Just like the 70's.
runec 
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Posted 2/24/16

zangetsushi wrote:
Just like the 70's.


Really? Can't think of anything important?

The only thing the 90s ruined was music
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Posted 2/24/16
I'd rather speak the controversial truth than be politically correct. If that offends someone then tough luck
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Posted 2/24/16 , edited 2/25/16

theYchromosome wrote:

I'll start with a definition. If you use 'political correctness' differently than I do, then please give me your definition in return. Either way, I'll define it in the way that I believe most people are apt to use the word. I'll define it as such: to act politically correct is to 'act in a way calculated to offend the least number of people.' This seems, to me, the best way to get at what most people are despairing at when they talk about PC. Given some of the results of this definition, I have the feeling that some would insist on defining it differently, which is fine, and I'll get into that later. After all, I may find out that even I have a problem with my definition. But for now, let's consider the problem with the above definition, and we can work from there.

First, I see nothing wrong, inherently, with a thing being politically correct. It is, for example, overwhelmingly the Politically Correct stance to be against: rape, serial killing, drug addiction, fascism, and child molestation. Being pro-any-of-those-things is basically a sure stance to offend just about everyone, which means that, by definition, if you are against any of the above, you have taken the politically correct position. And further, if someone ever tried to criticize an 'anti-rape proponent' by calling them PC, how could you see it as anything more than a massive non-sequitur? Surely, you might say, whether or not it's PC is irrelevant? And that is, basically, how I usually see PC-hate. Which is to say, as a massive non-sequitur.

Political Correctness is essentially, a form of etiquette. And etiquette, mind you, has been around for millennia. And this is where I'll make my position clear, because I'm not saying here that political correctness is the same as, for instance, ethical correctness, or moral correctness, or economical correctness, etc. If one's goal is political, then the best choice to make is the politically correct choice. That's it. There may be more important things to you than politics, and in the case when, for instance, the politically correct and the ethically correct contradict each other, then you may likely reject political correctness. But this is not because, contrary to popular belief, political correctness is wrong, but because your political goals are superseded by your ethical ones. I would recommend roughly the same advice about political correctness that I would about etiquette -- you should be polite as possible until it interferes with something of higher import.

Edit: Food for Thought: Given Donald Trump's success in the Republican party, would you say that bashing political correctness is, politically, the correct decision?



I have no disagreement with political correctness. There are some things that, one shouldn't say or do in this day and time.

But where do you draw the line? It's one thing to correct someone on something racial for example but then you have people who want to ban and censor things because of something that wouldn't go over in today's world, without realizing that it was written/produced in a different time. Like college students who want Greek literature banned for example...or those who want Gone with the Wind banned. Or those two girls who were using face masks but got called out for racism.

Everything, in a way, is problematic in some way or another. But you can't let it rule what you read/learn/watch/listen otherwise you'd have one boring life.

As for Trump's success....I think it's a combination of a lot of things:

--People are mad that Obama didn't do most of the shit he promised.

--People are scared of immigrants and terrorism. Personally, you have more of a chance of being shot by an angry white person.

--People just want change overall. Personally, I don't think Trump believes half the shit he says, but people are mad and he struck a nerve with certain people. His followers though? Jesus fucking Christ....*facepalms* Someone can send their asses out of the country.

*ETA: Not the Trump followers on here, who at least seem like reasonable people for the most part. I'm talking about the ones who believe slavery wasn't bad, and want to basically put Muslims into camps and kill the gays off.
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Posted 2/24/16
Political correctness is sheer ignorance
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Posted 2/24/16 , edited 2/25/16

Nogara-san wrote:


theYchromosome wrote:

I would recommend roughly the same advice about political correctness that I would about etiquette -- you should be polite as possible until it interferes with something of higher import.


I have no disagreement with political correctness. There are some things that, one shouldn't say or do in this day and time.

But where do you draw the line? It's one thing to correct someone on something racial for example but then you have people who want to ban and censor things because of something that wouldn't go over in today's world, without realizing that it was written/produced in a different time. Like college students who want Greek literature banned for example...or those who want Gone with the Wind banned. Or those two girls who were using face masks but got called out for racism.


I think we're mostly in agreement here. But, you ask, "where do you draw the line?" I left the last sentence of my first post in, because that was more or less my answer to your question, but I think this overlaps a little with my answer to camay1997, so I'll answer both of you at the same time.


camay1997 wrote:

The problem with political correctness is that it's proponents act as if there's some universal standard which we should all be aware of and adhere to. Sure MOST people are against rape, serial killing, drug addiction, fascism, and child molestation but some aren't, and tend to site religion as their justification but that's a topic for another discussion. Let me focus on the idea of trying to offend as few people as possible. Even if your joke as deemed inoffensive by 99% of the people who heard it that'd still leave 60 million people on this planet offended. And since what offends people will vary by context, age, sex, occupation, race, orientation, religion, locale and a dozen other things; it seems like pandering to that 1% to go out of one's way to be PC. And that seems odd in a society that went with majority rule


First of all, I'll just thank you for being the first one to criticize my argument, rather than just ignore it and go on making unrelated arguments. So thanks.

Secondly, in case you didn't read what I've written above your quote, I believe I can formulate an answer to both of your and Nogara-san's posts by looking at the question "where do you draw the line?". My answer, in short, is that Political Correctness should be pursued until it interferes with something of higher import. If, for instance, people wanted criminalize the word 'nigger,' this would interfere with free speech, which is to me, something of higher import. So, I'd be against the criminalization of any words. Now if I understand your argument correctly, you seem to be implying something along the lines of "since anything you say might potentially offend someone, somewhere, the least offensive thing you can say is nothing at all, which, thus, efficiently ends free speech -- which we agree is for the best of society -- thus, we reject any political correctness." Or to put it a different way, you might agree with the statement that one should be politically correct until it interferes with something of higher import, but you would say that political correctness always (or almost always) interferes with something of higher import. So you would push the 'appropriate amount of political correctness slider' down to 0, or very near there.

Your argument is correct, I think, if a person can only have one set of goals at a time. If a person must choose between their political goals, their ethical goals, their economic goals, philosophical goals, social goals, etc. then I agree that their political ones should almost always be rejected. Sometimes this is the case. Sometimes, for instance, you simply can't get your point across without offending everyone in the room, and you think it more important, perhaps ethically for instance, to maintain honesty. This is precisely where your argument applies. However, it must also be recognized that people often live in a nexus of desires, goals, and ambitions that supersede their desire to be liked by others, or in agreement with others, or what ever 'politics' even means outside of the governmental denotation, within which most of us live. Let me try and make myself a little more clear.

Words don't mean anything of themselves. We have an idea of the thing we want to communicate, and we probably have a few words that might refer to the thing in question. Although there are many ways to communicate things, let's stick with words for now. Using words, then, I've successfully communicated something to someone else when the word that I use brings up a sufficiently similar referent in each of our minds. So, for example, if I say 'chair,' and am thinking of something like a sofa, and my conversational partner hears 'chair' and thinks of something like a throne, then, pretty much, the only thing I've really communicated is more or less 'something to sit on.' If that's all I needed, then it's successful, otherwise, we may have some misunderstanding. I mention this only to illustrate that no two people have the exact same referent of a word. Everyone understands the meaning of every word ever so slightly differently, although there are still enough similarities to render language useful. I should add that I've never been in anyone else's head, so I can't really verify this, but I just think it very unlikely that the experiences that gave us the ideas behind our words were exactly the same, and thus it seems to me quite fair to say that the ideas themselves probably differ to varying respects.

So, if I'm trying to communicate the same idea to both my brother and my mother, I will use different words. Not because I'm inauthentic, or I need to wear a mask with different people, or I'm deceitful, or whatever, but because people understand words differently, and the best words to bring about mutual understanding may differ between people. The reason this is relevant in the context of political correctness is because, usually, your goals don't exist in a vacuum consisting only of yourself and one and only one goal. I may have multiple goals, many of which can be fortified and better met using the assistance of others, and if I want to convince them of the mutual beneficence of my ideas, I will want to communicate these ideas in a way that leads both of us to understand each other. This means that I will want to tailor my words to reflect how my listener understands them. The reason why it's good, in this instance, to avoid offense, is because it sours the possibility of understanding, distracts from dialogue, and shuts down discussion.

I don't use curse words in front of my mother. Not because I think one shouldn't curse in front of one's mother, but because I know that my mother will be instantly distracted from the rest of the conversation. At the least, she would say 'watch your mouth,' and at the most, the discussion at hand would be over and we would begin the discussion "what the hell's wrong with swear words?" If I use those words while trying to explain something important to me, I know that using them will derail conversation and make it harder to make my point, if for no other reason than that my mother will find it harder to focus on what I'm saying. The same might be said of using the word 'nigger.' It usually makes it harder to come to an understanding, and as such, it is usually an inefficient communication tool.

Sadly, although it is often used as a way to control what others say, using the 'Politically Correct Terms' should be a way to choose what you say. Ideally, someone informing you what they think of when you call them, for instance, a faggot, is them telling you something along the lines of -- look man, I know the word doesn't mean much to you, but the things I associate with that word instantly bring up a bunch of other shit that has nothing to do with your main point. It's pretty fucking distracting, and you could make your point a lot easier if you just used a different word. Ideally, it's advice on how to communicate better, not how to stop communication all together. 'Political Correctness' is, in a way, a guide into the mind of someone that has a very different way of understanding things than you do. It's like having a fucking road map, in some ways.

In short I believe your argument is flawed because usually, you have something that you want to do that is not politically motivated. You want to get a point across, or convince some people to join a project, or a whole slew of things. But, given that you have a particular thing that you want to do, there are multiple ways to going about doing it, and you are usually well served by minimizing the extent to which you offend the people you are trying to convince. You may always offend someone with something you say, but given that your point is important to you, you would be well served by minimizing distractions, which 'being offended' almost always is.

Anyway, that was entirely too fucking long. Don't feel compelled to respond to all (or any) of that.
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Posted 2/25/16 , edited 2/25/16
Warning I don't care about Grammar. If you are OCD about grammar and that nonsense. Then please don't read this reply.

The main reason I hate Political correctness is for 2 reasons.
1) I was taught words meant a certain thing. For instance retarded. As a kid it just meant stupid. Now I understand not calling someone mentally handicapped retarded. It wasn't until 7th grade everyone started making a big deal about that word. I have had actual mentally handicapped people jokingly call me retarded before. There are other words as kids we used that have then changed because later on we found out about another meaning. The biggest one was nigga for me. Being a white kid in the midwest with VERY few black people around. We heard it in songs and for the most part it was like saying bro but cooler because teacher would get upset. We didn't learn the reason why it was such an offensive word until probably 5th grade i think. Now in culture it means one thing, in history it means another. Then it is a word that can only be used by people of color. Which is a form of racism in itself. The whole word nigger/nigga is stupid and hypocrital racism. On both sides of the "race card"

2)Most the people that take offense to words used for political correctness I see aren't even effected by the word. I have had so many people freak out at me for using words to describe stuff, all because of a different meaning of the word.

In my personal opinion words are to be used to describe something. If I say that shirt is gay, you know what I mean. It sucks and its dumb. The word gay use to mean happy. Then it became a term for homosexuals. So wouldnt be calling something gay technically happy. Since the most common thing I hear from people defending political correctness is that well the word started with a different meaning.I would just like to be able to describe something with words I know EVERYONE knows. Instead of pulling out an thasaurus to find random words that no one knows that mean the same thing.
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Posted 2/25/16

theYchromosome wrote:

First, I see nothing wrong, inherently, with a thing being politically correct. It is, for example, overwhelmingly the Politically Correct stance to be against: rape, serial killing, drug addiction, fascism, and child molestation. Being pro-any-of-those-things is basically a sure stance to offend just about everyone, which means that, by definition, if you are against any of the above, you have taken the politically correct position.


Those have much more to do with morality and immorality than being politically correct or incorrect.
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Posted 2/25/16

nanikore2 wrote:


theYchromosome wrote:

First, I see nothing wrong, inherently, with a thing being politically correct. It is, for example, overwhelmingly the Politically Correct stance to be against: rape, serial killing, drug addiction, fascism, and child molestation. Being pro-any-of-those-things is basically a sure stance to offend just about everyone, which means that, by definition, if you are against any of the above, you have taken the politically correct position.


Those have much more to do with morality and immorality than being politically correct or incorrect.


How so? In fact, if I were to be persistent, I'd say they fit the definition of PC more than they do morality. Whether or not people are offended by these things is basically a sure fact, whereas there are proponents of each of things I've mentioned that don't believe they are doing anything immoral. Whether child molestation offends people is something we can all basically agree on, whereas you have yet to convince fascists, rapists, etc. that what they are doing is wrong. They can agree that they are politically incorrect in their views. They won't necessarily agree that they are immoral. But we'll forget others and just talk about you.

Do you believe that rape is politically correct? Or that being anti-child-molestation is politically incorrect? I don't see how what you've said constitutes a rejection of anything that I've said. My point there was to delineate the fact that calling something 'politically correct' does not constitute a criticism, since many things that they think are good, are, in fact, politically correct. That they are also ethically correct, or emotionally correct, or whatever else, does not change this fact.
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Posted 2/25/16

theYchromosome wrote:


nanikore2 wrote:


theYchromosome wrote:

First, I see nothing wrong, inherently, with a thing being politically correct. It is, for example, overwhelmingly the Politically Correct stance to be against: rape, serial killing, drug addiction, fascism, and child molestation. Being pro-any-of-those-things is basically a sure stance to offend just about everyone, which means that, by definition, if you are against any of the above, you have taken the politically correct position.


Those have much more to do with morality and immorality than being politically correct or incorrect.


How so? In fact, if I were to be persistent, I'd say they fit the definition of PC more than they do morality. Whether or not people are offended by these things is basically a sure fact, whereas there are proponents of each of things I've mentioned that don't believe they are doing anything immoral. Whether child molestation offends people is something we can all basically agree on, whereas you have yet to convince fascists, rapists, etc. that what they are doing is wrong. They can agree that they are politically incorrect in their views. They won't necessarily agree that they are immoral. But we'll forget others and just talk about you.

Do you believe that rape is politically correct? Or that being anti-child-molestation is politically incorrect? I don't see how what you've said constitutes a rejection of anything that I've said. My point there was to delineate the fact that calling something 'politically correct' does not constitute a criticism, since many things that they think are good, are, in fact, politically correct. That they are also ethically correct, or emotionally correct, or whatever else, does not change this fact.


People get offended by all sorts of things. That doesn't automatically make those things politically incorrect.

Is SAO politically correct? Is a cat pooping on someone's front lawn politically incorrect?

Rape is immoral. Someone who is against child molestation is being moral.

You are conflating morality with political correctness.

The difference is between that of the rightness and wrongness of SPEECH and TERMS rather than categorical ACTS.
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Posted 2/25/16
There are limits to political correctness which when crossed, results in a society unable to express itself in an effective manner for fear of being labelled "racist" "sexist" "homophobic" "aniphobic" (I made that one up). Etiquette and political correctness may be similar and have considerable crossover but that does not make them the same thing.


First, I see nothing wrong, inherently, with a thing being politically correct. It is, for example, overwhelmingly the Politically Correct stance to be against: rape, serial killing, drug addiction, fascism, and child molestation.


Strawman example, no sane member of Western Society has ever argued that (with the exception of fascism which is a political ideology and could be replaced with communism) rape, serial killings, drug addiction and child molestation are anything but deplorable. A better example of being politically correct would be to refer to disabled people as differently abled.

Also Trump's success in the Republic candidacy race is far more complex than him simply bashing political correctness; if this was true, he would not be the front runner in the Republican Party. Other important deficits in the American political system (e.g. political dynasties) are fuelling his success which is also fuelling the successes that Bernie Sanders has enjoyed against Clinton.
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Posted 2/25/16 , edited 2/25/16
Agree with @HighProfile, & @runec.
"PC" is wrong precisely because it has been and will continue to be used as an excuse for euphemism of the otherwise indefensible, along with the tired prefix of "I'm not a racist, but..."
Etiquette and courtesy and respect already have clear unambiguous definitions, there is no need to introduce a new term when there will never be agreement on its definition, and when it is abused by multiple sides of a debate to protect their 'freedom of hate speech' with convenient weasel-words, and when usage of the term has already been derided for a number of decades as being exactly that, such that now "PC" is a derogatory term.

The very nature of polity is that unless you govern an isolated island nation of clones with no external influences, you are dealing with an entire ideological spectrum from one extreme to another, and 'getting everyone to agree' in a democratic sense is impossible because of that.
It is one major reason why we have poll-driven democracies grinding to a legislative halt with 50-50 splits in parliaments(or congress), & senates vetoing bills, vote preference deals with minor parties to make up numbers, continual leadership spills (Australia) and popularity driven not policy driven elections (US) - to be fair that is also due to discrepancy in voter income and education levels, and we'll leave out the additional issues of lobby groups, corruption, & separation of powers, church & state, etc....

In any case, no single given thing can be Politically Correct in the true sense of "correctness" to everyone at the same time,
which made the terminology somewhat of an oxymoron right from its inception.
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Posted 2/25/16 , edited 2/25/16
@Voc666IV - not nitpicking but a suggestion for your Strawman example, you might want to add the term "no sane <NON SOCIOPATHIC> member of society" - because there are plenty of sociopaths who rationalise those things each day to themselves without any strain on their sanity or conscience. Unfortunately. And a number of them are running powerful global corporations, since that is exactly what their mental archetype is optimised to cope with. Money protects their privacy for now. A free media might threaten that, if only we had one.

Sorry, that's a pet peeve coming from Australia with journalists and doctors losing whistleblower protections in successive sneaky backroom legislative deals in order to treat them as criminal acts - thankyou "Australian Border Force Act, truly you are the sneaky little brother to the US Patriot Act.

We're currently dealing with two-faced media who one night will decry the nation's shame of a "housing affordability crisis" as renters and young first home buyers are unable to achieve "the Australian dream" of owning their own property while the wealthy fat cat slum lords sit on vast tracts of investor properties pushing up the rent;
then the next night the same media will proudly broadcast our Prime Minister shouting down proposals by the opposition to grandfather negative gearing on tax only for existing investor properties, in order to incentivise investment in NEW properties, increasing the amount available to renters. But that sounds like a good idea - why would he should that down, you ask? Because that would cause housing prices to fall! Oh! My! Don't hurt the income of my rich voting constituency!!!

THAT is Political Correctness in a nutshell - one person's "solution to the housing affordability crisis" is another person's "real estate market crash" - and you can probably guess which person Donald Trump would side with.

You'll love the PM's alternative proposals thus far -
- increase GST (hurt the wallet of the little guys who can't fight back with tax "avoidance")
- increase tax rate on superannuation (that's AU equivalent to US 401K ) - again with the little guy
- remove the tax concessions on the 1st $18k earned by backpacker fruit pickers our farmers depend on for cheap labour - hurt little guy AND break the back of our farmers who already can't afford the pricing pressure from megaprofitting supermarket chains...

Meanwhile Google, Apple, etc pay <1% effective tax rate here thx to complex offshore shell company structures, billions of tax income lost right there.

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