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News Has society become too politically correct?

  1. Oct 13, 2003 #1
    Nowadays everything has to be PC. You're not retarded, you're "mentally impaired". You're not black, you're "african american". You're not fat, you're "Metabollically challenged". I recall a lawsuit where a black(yes I'm not being PC) woman sued an airline because a stewardess was telling everyone to sit down, and innocently recited an old children's rhyme- Ennie Meenie, miny, mo. Suing based on it's roots, which originally involved the use of the "N" word. Then there's affirmative action. Now suddenly it doesn't matter if you have the grades, determination, and dedication to education. Now race becomes a factor, which to me is simply a way of masking reverse racism.

    So have we become so overly concerned with equality that we've crossed the line? Have we become so intent on giving everyone equal opportunity that our overzealous approach as resulting in simply tippng the scales the other way instead of balancing them out? Comments please.
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 13, 2003 #2
    I think that most people who complain about so-called political correctness are racist or sexist. There is a need in this country to be inclusive, and the absurd abuses of the idea do not invalidate the idea. Being anti-PC allows you to tell huge lies, as far as I can see. For instance, to my knowledge, no white student with a 4.0 GPA has been refused a college education so that a minority student with a 1.0 GPA can get in, but this is how the anti-PC crowd paints the situation.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 13, 2003
  4. Oct 13, 2003 #3
    Yes, PC has gone too far, but it's not as bad as you're always hearing. This is really a result of human nature though, when we try and cause a change in society, if it happens it will overshoot the equilibrium and go the other way, so lets hope it's a damped oscillation so that it doesn't start to suck to be a white christian male and also hope that it eventually settles down on the correct point (whatever that is).
  5. Oct 13, 2003 #4
    This brings up the point that while Christian males have such a hugfe sense of entitlement, that they feel threatened when anyone else starts to get a fair shot.
  6. Oct 13, 2003 #5
    Re: Re: Has society become too politically correct?

    I'm niether racist or sexist. I wasn't saying that the idea was a bad one. I was simply saying that perhaps we should be more selective in the application of it. I never said that affirmative action was causing white students to loose thier chances. But the overall IDEA of a affirmative action is self reinforcing. Race is not supposed to be a biased, yet affirmative action is doing just that- pointing out race and saying "oh so and so is disadvantaged because they are a certain race". Well that is racism! And befor you go off on me, I have more non-white friends than white friends, so I'm not insensitive to the issues that plague minorities. But by making something an issue, you're adding to the problem, not takin away from it.
  7. Oct 13, 2003 #6
    Re: Re: Re: Has society become too politically correct?

    The problem with your thinking is the assumption that race isn't ALREADY an issue, which it is. Affirmative action doesn't create racial differences, it simply puts them out in the open, and attempts to rectify the inequality. Inequality isn't reinforced by affirmative action, but it sure does point out the bias and blindness in certain people.
  8. Oct 13, 2003 #7


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    The problem with your thinking is the assumption that race IS an issue.

    The big drawback to AA, and PC in general, is that it forces awareness upon those who would otherwise not give one's race, gender, handicap, or whatever a second thought... and I know on more than one occasion that I have treated those in various minorities differently than I would everybody else simply because I was afraid my actions would be interpreted as a prejudice.

    For example, the elevator I usually took to my previous office tends to be slow, so I would usually move on to the set of main elevators if I saw someone was waiting to go up. One day I stepped into the alcove, saw the up arrow lit up, and stepped out to go on to the main elevators, and as I turned the corner, I realized the person waiting was in a wheelchair, and I was worried the rest of the morning that my actions might have been misinterpreted as a reluctance to be around a handicapped person.

    I doubt that I am the only person affected in this way.

    And, of course, AA seems to be encouraging the notion that "reverse discrimination" is occuring, which leads to a lot of bitter feelings among some.

    AA, and PC in general, is not a wholly good thing... and given my state of knowledge, I'm inclined to agree that they have outlived their usefulness.
  9. Oct 13, 2003 #8
    Uh huh...spoken like an unconscious racist...which is my point. Minorities get treated differently anyways, and will continue to do so if we sweep all official awaerness under the rug. There is an institutional racism that exists in the country, and not talking about it won't make it go away. Again, I see plenty of teh white entitelment going on here, that you shouldn't be forced to deal with the reality of race.
  10. Oct 13, 2003 #9

    Read the link.
  11. Oct 13, 2003 #10


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    No. We aren't overly concerned, but that the whole civil rights movement has been turned from a movement towards reason to a general phobia - better to x and y or the black peril would come to get you. Meanwhile, many sectors have been little affected at all, and discrimination persists. (Consider that Fundamentalism movements have been growing unnoticed of late.) In short, we are seeing one big mess of radical views, and in some cases, the actions of society are only serving to push people towards the extremes. Maybe it will eventually settle down. But what would really help is not quick fix solutions but to openly address the divisions, with understanding than reflex actions.

    Whether the public is up for that is another question.
  12. Oct 13, 2003 #11


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    Are you saying people of different races should be treated differently?

    The only entitlement I'm looking for is the right to form my opinion about people based on who they are, rather than society telling me what I should think based on what they are.
  13. Oct 13, 2003 #12
    Of course they should be treated equally. That's what affirmitive action is all about. Do you think that white males are better qualified than black people? Then why do they have all the good jobs, if not for racism?

    It's been shown that people with white sounding names get hired over people with black sounding names, given equal credentials. So how can affirmitive action be reverse discrimination if white people are still getting an unfair advantage.
  14. Oct 13, 2003 #13
    you're typical white person has more opportunities to be successful, and so they are. That's why cacausion males fill the workplace. AA is to try and spread the opportunities to minorities. I think it may have gone too far in some instances, but just like pleanty of other things the idea was 'good in theory.'

    There are cases where a white man with a 4.0 gpa won't be accepted over a black or asian with a 3.0. Colleges want the diversity so they make it easier for minorities to get in. It's not really wrong, it's just politics and bussiness. They look better when they look diverse, so it's just a marketing decision. Same with the workplace, they do what's best to make money, get workers, or whatever. Diversity and appealing to minorities helps bring the in bacon.
  15. Oct 13, 2003 #14


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    Off topic:

    Not really relevant to the topic of the thread, but while your example is artificial, similar such things HAVE actually happened and the courts have ruled on them.
    Fight fire with fire, fight racism with racism. Sorry, our Constitution does not allow that.
    Economic status maybe? Culture? Demographic data shows conclusively that socioeconomic status is the determining factor there - not race. And you're swinging a double-edged sword there - others have used the same point you brought up to conclude blacks are genetically inferior to whites.

    So tell me, Zero and Chemical - should we keep or remove racial preferences in situations where the selection system can truly be blind. A college application process for example doesn't tell the admissions office anything at all about a person's race (or sex) unless it is set up to. It IS possible to be color blind. Should we do it when it is possible?

    I would also like to point out that there isn't a box on the sign-up page for this forum listing race. Should there be?

    Guys, we CAN attain a color-blind society, but it won't happen without removing racial discrimination. The Constitution is color blind and when challeneged before the Constitution, all forms of racial discrimination including AA are struck-down.

    As a side note, being a reasonably successful person, most of the blacks I come into contact with are also reasonably successful people. Almost without exception they are INSULTED by the concept of affirmative action. As well they should be.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2003
  16. Oct 14, 2003 #15
    Unfortunately, in many cases society has already told people that minorities are inferior, and any attempt at equality is reverse racism.
  17. Oct 14, 2003 #16
    Russ, you are persuasive, and wrong, as usual! Your error is treating people outside the context of their relative history. The parents of almost everyone on PF lived in the era of segregation...do you think the historical and social ramifications disappeared in the 60s, and American culture suddenly became colorblind?


    Actually, you come close to being right on the issue of economics...but economic hardship seems to fall on minorities in greater percentages, a holdover from the historical inequality that exists. Then again, what do you care about poor people, you are conservative!
  18. Oct 14, 2003 #17
    Affirmative Action on the basis of race, I think, is not helping. Affirmative Action on the basis of socioeconomic status, however, would be a good thing.

    I think that at times, people can be too PC, but it's not as bad as some reactionaries like to think. I remember be slightly reprimanded by someone for saying "retarded" instead of "mentally challenged" or whatever a few days ago. I think that such PC-ness is rather silly, but it's not to the point of absurdity that some people calim.
  19. Oct 14, 2003 #18
    Yeah, there are individual silly examples of this, but the emphasis is on silly. No one is getting hurt by some of the silly new language, and we all have a good laugh about it.
  20. Oct 14, 2003 #19


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    Equality = reverse racism[?]

    It's not the language but the mind-set we're supposed to have with it; that the feelings of those in the minority matter more than everyone else's feelings.
  21. Oct 14, 2003 #20
    That attitude is full of poo...and a good example of what I mean by white entitlement. There is the unspoken assumption that the standard American is a WASP male, and everyone who doesn't fit that bill is 'other'. And any time the 'other' seeks equality, they are asking to be treated 'special'. Its BS, and you are smart enough to know better.
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