More than any other cultural artifact, the PC movement dictates what can or can’t be said, and what the nature of truth is. How is it possible that a small group of elites, originally hailing from Germany, of Marxist conviction, have been allowed to dictate the outline of polite discourse for the last few decades? In fact, the PC movement is a hoax obscured under a false definition of civility. In fact, PC is the very opposite of civility, being a tyranny against free expression, driven by a Marxist cultural jihad, meant to extinguish the right of conservatives to express their beliefs, or mount principled dissent against leftism.
Is there any influence which more hamstrings Americans from declaring the truth besides Political Correctness? In fact, this set of prefabricated, progressive conclusions brokers no dissent and takes no prisoners. On any number of crucial subjects, the PC movement demands one concrete position. This kind of doctrinaire thinking cancels free speech, embargoes real debate, makes critical thinkers hide their gifts from the public, and crushes the notion of real societal growth behind a cozy wall of faux comity.
This article asks for a national public demonstration against Political Correctness in the name of Liberty. The day suggested—July 3rd, 2013—is chosen to remind Americans of the tight relationship between our God-given right to Liberty and the American Revolution.
What is Political Correctness and what is it meant to achieve? Webster’s defines it: “Conforming to a belief that language and practices which could offend political sensibilities (as in matters of sex or race) should be eliminated.”
But what Political Correctness really is can be explained by Robert Griffin III (RG3) the most popular player in the NFL, by jersey sales. The phenomenal Black quarterback stated in a recent comment:
As the controversy continues to brew over the “racist” and “derogatory” nature of the naming of the NFL’s Washington Redskins, the team’s quarterback, Robert Griffin III, complained on Tuesday that America is being held hostage by political correctness.
“In a land of freedom we are held hostage by the tyranny of political correctness,” tweeted Griffin on Tuesday.
He then followed up with another tweet that offered a definition of tyranny. “Tyranny—‘a condition imposed by some outside agency or force living under the tyranny of the clock’ or political correctness….,” he noted.
As it has been applied, it’s hard to argue that the PC movement has resulted in anything other than a censorious effect, essentially damning many quintessential Conservative convictions, and scuppering meaningful dialogue over a myriad of serious subjects.
Consider the pernicious effects of decades of PC:
Some believe PC makes America less safe:
Sen. Lindsey Graham says America’s national-security apparatus broke down, both before and after the Boston bombings, and let political correctness get in the way of monitoring potential terrorists. “I think political correctness is not monitoring these people’s Facebooks and websites,” Graham said. “What gets me is that it was not hard to understand [TamerlanTsarnaev] was becoming radical before our eyes, but nobody really picked it up.”
Warfare has been affected by PC, which makes it more dangerous for American soldiers, according to John L. Cook in Afghanistan: The Perfect Failure - A War Doomed by the Coalition’s ...:
Coalition forces have gone to great pains not to do anything that could be considered an insult to Islam. American forces in Afghanistan are not allowed to consume alcohol for fear of offending the host nation. The soldiers are prohibited from discussing religion with their Afghan counterparts for fear of offending Islam. To distribute any religion material, no matter how innocuous, is a serious breach of protocol and will result in severe disciplinary action. As a result, the western powers have conceded the battle for the hearts and minds of Afghans to the enemy for fear of offending Islam. The enemy, taking full advantage of the weakness and political correctness of the west, and combining this knowledge with the iron grip that Islam exerts over the Afghans, have won the war of ideas - by reminding the Afghans, over and over, that they are Muslims with an uncompromising obligation to protect the faith.
PC destroys the idea of great Art. Post-Modern Art is itself a product of leftist theories, as opposed to the traditional theory of aesthetics, according to Christopher Butler, in Postmodernism: A Very Short Introduction. This ridiculous fact is well attested by Tom Wolfe’s brilliant, The Painted Word.—which revealed that critics of abstract art might decide on the worth of a work by gauging the thickness of the paint. Roger Kimball’s Rape of the Masters is reviewed:
In The Rape of the Masters, Kimball, a noted art critic himself, shows how academic art history is increasingly held hostage to radical cultural politics‚Äìfeminism, cultural studies, post-colonial studies, the whole armory of academic anti-humanism. To make his point, Kimball shows how eight famous works of art have been made over to fit a radical ideological fantasy. Kimball then performs a series of intellectual rescue operations, showing how these great works should be understood through a series of illuminating readings in which art, not politics, guides the discussion. The Rape of the Masters exposes the charlatanry the fuels much academic art history and leaks into the art world generally, affecting galleries, museums and catalogues. It also provides an engaging antidote to the tendentious, politically motivated assaults on our treasured sources of culture and civilization.
The threat of PC to freedom of expression is unnerving. David Berstein explains the problem in You Can’t Say That!: The Growing Threat to Civil Liberties from Ant...:
Antidiscrimination laws should not be exempt from the 1st Amendment’s limits on government power. The contrary position is antidiscrimination considerations should almost always override any competing concerns, including 1st Amendment rights. The primary rationale is such laws are justified on the ground that the offense taken by people who face discrimination is an especially serious moral harm.
Punishing expression because it creates offense has absurd and totalitarian implications. This has been amply demonstrated on university campuses that have prohibited their faculties and students from offending each other in politically incorrect ways. One college punished a student for “inappropriate laughter’’ after snorting when his roommate called another student a “fag.’’ Other colleges have banned inconsiderate jokes, speech that threatens a student’s self-esteem, inappropriate eye contact (or lack thereof), and licking one’s lips in a provocative manner.
Our very use of words and freedom of expression is becoming dictated. A defense of leftist language purification is cited here (this is not a joke!):
Why should we even try and use politically correct language?
As more people start using politically correct language it will become more and more accepted as the way of doing things. It will become the correct way to speak. It will mean that sexism and racism will begin to lose their stranglehold position in today’s society. There are many ways around using sexist language in speech and text. Simple replacements of man with person work in most cases. Use of gender inspecific pronouns like it and they work in a lot of other cases. Politically correct language does not reduce your vocabulary or in any way inhibit your freedom of speech. Let me expand on that. Freedom of speech is a qualified statement, it should never be thought of that you can say anything you want and get away with it. The current system is you are free to say anything, it’s just that people are free to bring liable, defamation or assault charges against you.
PC is bad for the economy. Consider how the PC agenda of higher taxes and anti-bias Global Warming cause state economies to shrink, and relocation of persons to business-friendly states, like Texas and Wyoming. One writer points out the collectivist nature of PC:
It’s collectivism, which destroys individualism. Competition is bad. Everyone’s a winner. Everyone has to be included and treated the same. Singling out individuals as special or unique excludes others, so that’s out. Lost is individual responsibility and accountability, the drive to compete and win, the motivation to be recognized for achievement and superior performance…Business leaders and managers are less willing to give employees genuine feedback because they’re afraid of being sued or accused of harassment, discrimination, or being a bully. You can’t even compliment how someone looks or show any genuine emotions anymore. That might create a hostile work environment. When you remove personal responsibility by telling people they’re doing great when they’re not and giving them stuff for doing nothing, in time, they feel like they deserve it.
Even comedy is a victim of PC standards, claims Lisa Lampanelli:
I’m a take-no-prisoners type of comic, and I’m lucky because my fans get me and never have a problem with the politically incorrect themes of my act. But I am continually amazed by how a certain section of our society seems to be so freakin’ sensitive about jokes….Comedy, probably more than any other art form, is subjective. What jokes crack up your mom, your little brother, and your gay best friend will be completely different—unless it’s a video of a guy getting hit in the gonads with a pi√±ata stick. That’s funny to everyone…..By being politically correct, you’re closing your mind to a different point of view. Which sounds a lot like prejudice. Which is definitely not politically correct. See what I just did there?
From where does the PC movement derive? It was an export from Germany before WWII, when academic Marxists sought to avoid Hitler’s wrath by coming to America. Along the way they decided to take Marxist revolutionary theory and turn it into a cultural mandate, applied to young, impressionable minds at the universities. Bill Lind offers this history:
In 1923 in Germany, a think-tank was established to translate Marxism from economic into cultural terms, creating Political Correctness as known today. An institute, associated with Frankfurt University, was established in 1923, originally to be known as the Institute for Marxism. But it was not advantageous to be openly identified as Marxist. So instead they decide to name it the Institute for Social Research.
The first director of the Institute, Carl Grunberg, said he wanted, “personal allegiance to Marxism as a scientific methodology.” Marxism, he said, would be the ruling principle at the Institute, and that never changed. The people who create and form the Frankfurt School are renegade Marxists.
Lind then explains how Marxist Critical Theory was used to establish various leftist movements:
Radical feminism, women’s studies departments, gay studies departments, the black studies departments—all these things are branches of Critical Theory. The Frankfurt School drew on both Marx and Freud in the 1930s to create this theory called Critical Theory. The term is ingenious because you’re tempted to ask, “What is the theory?” What Critical Theory is about is simply criticizing. It calls for the most destructive criticism possible, in every possible way, designed to bring the current order down. Other ideas include an element central to Political Correctness—the sexual element, calling for a society of “polymorphous perversity.” Another example is the emphasis we now see on environmentalism.
This article calls for a national protest against Politically Correct ideology, enforcement, arguments, and rules. The national anti-PC protest should be organized by way of a centrally located mass movement with signs and pamphlets. News releases should be sent-out, and media interviews sought, to make sure the message is delivered.
The message should be clear—the standard for USA is not pre-formatted ideas, whether by leftist elites or rightist ideologues, but freedom of belief, expression, and speech. The 1stAmendment’s Free speech clause, by definition, presumes differences of opinion and the right to hold contrary convictions. These contradictory ideas will be, by their very nature, difficult at first to understand and accommodate. Yet we must always be ready to countenance intellectual opposition because it is the seed of future evolution and growth for society.
The many other Americans who prefer not to assemble to protest the intellectual tyranny that the PC movement represents should go out of their way to share with others their true beliefs on controversial subjects. Yet, not as an excuse to be rude, but with great civility and respect. These are not contradictory notions, after all.
America will be emboldened by this display to more often speak our minds, and thereby seriously address pressing issues and give controversial subjects their proper respect. We must recall that Presidential Medal of Freedom winner Dr. Ben Carson, a neurosurgeon and best-selling author described how “we’re being crucified by political correctness,” and avoid the truth so as to not offend others. But only when we take the risk of offense will we really be communicating, and therefore adding our true ideas to the sum total of society, for its preservation and benefit.
Kelly O’Connell hosts American Anthem on CFP Radio Sundays at 4 pm (EST).
Kelly O’Connell is an author and attorney. He was born on the West Coast, raised in Las Vegas, and matriculated from the University of Oregon. After laboring for the Reformed Church in Galway, Ireland, he returned to America and attended law school in Virginia, where he earned a JD and a Master’s degree in Government. He spent a stint working as a researcher and writer of academic articles at a Miami law school, focusing on ancient law and society. He has also been employed as a university Speech & Debate professor. He then returned West and worked as an assistant district attorney. Kelly is now is a private practitioner with a small law practice in New Mexico. Kelly is now host of a daily, Monday to Friday talk show at AM KOBE called AM Las Cruces w/Kelly O’Connell