I’m going through a lot of excellent self-knowledge programs, each of which require a bit of introspection. I’ll post that, but not today. Today is for a bit of a rant.
“Politically Correct” is NOT about “don’t be a dick”. That’s simply “don’t be a dick”. I will not call people names or insult them or speak with hatred against others simply because that’s what you do in polite society – you know, be polite. Calling someone bad things or tell them they are going to hell (who does that??!) is more about heinous manners and BEING a dick.
Political correctness is about thought control and looking for reasons to take offense at something as a means of controlling them. “You can’t call someone a janitor.” “Why not?” “Because that’s bad.” “How the hell is it bad?” “It implies they are lesser.” “Who the eff put THAT judgment on the word? It sure as heck wasn’t me. There’s NOTHING wrong with being a janitor, except for NOW that you said it and put your dirty little judgment on it.”
Today a friend was describing something and called it a Jewish Bowl, the item being a historical one. She eventually said “I shouldn’t call it that, that’s racist.” Genuinely perplexed, I asked “why?” She said, in short, because. Because why? Eventually I managed to get that the artifact is from Babylon and around that area, so it might not actually be Jewish. My reply was “then calling it a Jewish Bowl is hardly ‘racist’, it’s just not accurate.” She continued to insist that labeling as Jewish was racist.
*sigh* Dude, naming something as being from a culture (correct or not) is NOT racist. That’s an attempt at identification. Racist would be saying the bowl or the culture that produced it was somehow deficient or exalted simply because of the culture which created it. Just saying “that white guy” or “that black guy” or “that albino dude” or “that Persian bowl” is NOT racist. Following that up with “is lesser for this trumped up reason” WOULD be racist. Do you see? Saying “the guy with the blue shirt” is about as racist as saying “the white lady”. It’s just a descriptor, like blonde or brunette. Someone assuming that when I say “the blonde guy” I’m actually saying “the moron”, well, that tells me more about the listener and what’s in their mind’s eye. Hall of Mirrors! Besides, I think racist is just a euphemism for xenophobia. “They’re different, and I blame it on what I can see with my eyes. I hate them because they are not like me.” Xenophobia.
Are people really so desperate to find reasons to be offended? Really? Why?
Ooooh, wait. It’s victim mentality, which our culture has going ON right now. OMFG are we totally steeped in the Victim mindset. There was an item in the movie Mystery Men that I thought was brilliant: the Blame Thrower. Like Cupid with his bow, we have some little invisible force running around right now randomly shooting the Blame Thrower at any and every one, causing an epidemic of thin skins looking for reasons to be offended (real and imagined!) resulting in a rising tide of righteous anger. “We’re oppressed, we’re so stepped on and downtrodden, it’s The Man’s fault, it’s corporations, it’s women, it’s greed, it’s socialists, it’s big government, it’s men, it’s religion, blah blah blah.” Usually these statements are followed by things like “You should pay for me to do/get/have X; I expect you to apologize for X/Y/Z and own it as if it’s yours because that keeps it alive for me; I want … I deserve … poor me.”
No one is immune to it. If you’re in this culture, you’re plugged in. Looking around at the global culture, I’m starting to think it’s not just those in the US either. No exceptions, the degree however is personal choice. The Victim is a survival archetype, and serves a vital role in helping to identify and protect personal boundaries, but when it’s allowed to run unchecked it’s not a pretty sight. It’s present, I think, because we’re now at a point where we collectively have to own our shadow. “Whaaaa?” Yes, our cultural shadow. No culture is as pure as the driven snow, NONE. Every group, regardless of size or age, has a seamy underbelly. We in the US are now just hanging it out there so darn blatantly that only those completely trapped in the Hall of Mirrors can’t recognize what’s going on.
So far, we’re denying it pretty thoroughly, looking at everyone else saying “But I’m not on that crazy train, so it’s not my fault.” Hmmm. Interesting choice of words. Not my fault. Those are victim words.
You know what victims excel at? Attempting to control the external world in an effort to control their internal world. It’s a safety mechanism. I’ve known a few abused folks, but I’ve far more deeply known abused animals. Control is everything, followed pretty much immediately by predictability. I had a rescue who was so freaked out by change that even moving his food dish a few inches to the left would have him hiding under the couch. Tragic! So people who get so caught up in the political correctness and the need to publically shame others is actually an expression of the victim as it attempts to control the outside world through mob mentality. Think about that the next time that someone says something which isn’t “politically correct” and consider whether or not they are saying something which is actually dickish (mean-spirited) or are they saying a truth that you just don’t really want to hear. That second one is the victim consciousness. “Oh! You can’t say that! It’s too close to the truth and I really don’t want to be facing that.” Too bad. That’s a victim mindset statement right there, and people catering to it are actually trying to be polite by walking on eggshells.
I don’t live in North Carolina, but if I did, I’d want to use the men’s room. I’m not transgendered, but who the hell will know? It’d be more of a statement. Will folks need a birth cert to use public restrooms? If I get beat up (or worse!) because some hick thinks I’m a man who chose to be a woman, I’m not sure if that would be covered or ignored by the media. What would the arrest warrant read if some man complained about it? Will they REALLY spend tax payer dollars to track me down, arrest me, incarcerate me and then pay for a trial? Ugh.
But anyway, back to my original point. Political correctness is about thought control done through a victim mindset. It has nothing to do with being a polite, socially ept individual who seeks to be considerate of those around them. From now on, I think I’m going to ask people who tell me I can’t say X or Y “is that because you think it’s been said maliciously or because it raises something you are uncomfortable thinking about?”