This morning I’m thinking about all the times I hear people complain about political correctness. Being politically correct is not something I ever think about and I don’t think the term is even relevant anymore. When I think about what it means, I realize that it’s what I would define as being polite, so it confuses me why anyone would complain about it or imply that the world was better before the age of political correctness. After all, being politically correct is just not saying anything outrageously racist, sexist, homophobic, classist, ableist, or otherwise bigoted. So, when someone says something negative about political correctness, what I hear them saying is “I wish I were free to say really offensive, bigoted things without fear of social humiliation.”
I was pretty young when the term “politically correct” was coined, so maybe this hasn’t always been the case, but these days it seems like the term is a derogatory term for treating people respectfully, used only by those who wish they could be more openly bigoted. People I know who have no complaint about treating people respectfully and as if they have equal worth as a human being no matter their race, sex, gender, religion, class, etc., never use the term “politically correct” at all. They would call their behavior polite or respectful, nothing more. It’s only a certain type of person who uses the term “politically correct”, and it’s not the kind of person I generally associate with.
There’s my observation of the day.
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