It’s a phrase you hear a lot these days. It’s usually uttered by a small-minded person who feels compelled to have a wide-ranging opinion.
Confronting complexities beyond one’s comprehension and understanding can result in a person wishing to revert to a simpler time, a simpler situation, when the other was clearly defined and not present. They were mocked unthinkingly and dismissed effortlessly. Think the major ‘isms.’ Sexism, racism, ageism, classism. This is the simpler time these purveyors of the notion that “you can’t say anything anymore” are wishing for.
Were it just dumb and recognized as so, it wouldn’t be a big deal. But Donald Trump is ushering in, or at least outing, a large swath of the country that is starting to feel a nationalistic urge. But when they say “you can’t say anything anymore,” don’t believe them. You can say virtually anything. Anything at all. You just have to have the personal strength to listen to others who may disagree. Vehemently.
This is the FURTHEST THING from a check on one’s freedom of speech. It is, in fact, the vigorous buttressing of that belief.
These delicate flowers decrying their ability to slander and repress whole segments of the population have some understanding of free speech that I can only imagine. Based on their thinking, free speech covers specifically anything they say. Nothing more or less. And in this dimwitted, solipsistic understanding of one of our most basic founding principles, they seem to think that freedom of speech means they are also free from any consequences of their speech. Consequences brought on by fellow citizens exercising the same right. To their understanding, it would seem that this impinges on their constitutional right to free speech. It’s kind of colossally, staggeringly ignorant.
I’m in no way asking anyone to stop lamenting “Politically Correct” values. In fact, doing so allows the rest of us to more easily spot you. It affords us some basic information about you that allows us to, at the very leas,t red-flag you, which is something we do in our brains. Don’t worry. You’re likely prone to conspiracy theories in which your whiteness is under attack. (Sorry for assuming the “I’m sick of all this PC bullshit” demo isn’t swimming in diversity.)
“Red’flagging” is simply a turn of phrase. We citizens of this diverse melting pot who recognize that cohabitation here in the land of the brave is a thing that requires us to accept differences and a changing landscape incorporating the value of all, we don’t have meetings or anything. We don’t even have a website. We just collectively lament “you” lamenting the “us” you so clearly don’t see yourself as belonging to once you reach the border of it benefiting you.
We mark you right where you told us to. Right in the PC bullshit bucket. You’re one of those. Yes, you who so despise the ordered and unwavering bureaucracy of democracy since it no longer ALWAYS (though still quite often, likely as the biases of individuals still make us a less perfect union) favors you without you being any the wiser.
I haven’t really worked out my internal flagging system, but let me delineate a few of the flags I use for you lot. I can see how hard it is for you to struggle with the abstract and changing norms, so I’ll just break out a few reasons you’re being watched. Don’t worry, delicate one. I’m not an agent of the government coming to look for you. Again, “being watched”? Just a turn of phrase.
These are a few of the types of people that worry about correctness by calling it bullshit and lamenting a time when they sat atop the tree unthreatened by anyone of any other culture.
Racists – This is a prevalent one. Racists constantly feel put upon since the racist crap they say with other racists is highlighted by decent people. Not all people who lament political correctness are racists, but pretty much all racists lament the culture of political correctness.
Sexists – It’s remarkable to me that this is still a thing in official life. But it’s codified in law, proclaimed in certain circles and promoted by the current leader in the race to be the next Republican candidate for president.
Normatives – People who dislike anyone who ventures too far from the top of the bell curve. Any bell curve.
Old and Insensitives – These have been given a pass for far too long. The world that old people long for may have run smoother. For them. When others were systemically and legally repressed. As so many still are today. It’s an excuse that’s outlived its usefulness. Empathy. Get some.
Mean People – You can tell them by the look of disgust frozen on their faces. They seem to be able to find bad in everything.
Ungrateful Users – Go look at some data from back when the Tea Party really got cooking. A sizable portion of these folks bent on the government not spending anything were in fact receiving, in some cases substantial, government subsidies and using them to fund their trips to conventions where they were decrying government subsidies to citizens. Yup. They blame it all on our “corrupting culture of political correctness.”
Donald Trump and His Followers
There are likely more, but this is a fair start. Keep in mind that many people one flags may fit in several categories. These fragile folks that can’t back their words when confronted tend to hold a bunch of wrongheaded opinions.
Political correctness can and does go too far. Like anything else. But too often the people criticizing it the loudest are actually referring to “correctness.” They are the ones applying the “political.”