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« Hidden Front Wheels | Main | The Personal Is Political? »

May 05, 2008


Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

Is political correctness hobbling the fight against AIDS in Africa? Fact for the day: "In Africa, the incidence of HIV infection is highest in the richest households and the richest countries." More.



posted by Michael at May 5, 2008


Michael, I might ask a different question: "Has Political Correctness HELPED any productive thing in the last 25 years?"

I am sure there are a few examples, I would just like to know what they are.

Posted by: Ian Lewis on May 5, 2008 11:12 AM

Hell, I'll answer that one, Ian.

This answer is not original. I read it some time ago in National Review.

30 years ago, I was favor of fairer, more polite treatment of gays, women and blacks in the public sphere. I still believe that this is a good thing.

It is one thing to speak irreverently about a person's sexual or racial characterists in a school, workplace or other public accommodation. It is altogether another thing to speak that way in private.

It's surprising to have to say this, but I was once a political leader in calling for equal treatment for gays, women and blacks.

Unfortunately, the inevitable happened. The left began to call for the canonization of gays, women and blacks and for superior rights for those groups. And, the left began to assert the right to police our words and actions in private.

I was very young when this all started. Had I been able to see where it would lead... I don't know what I would have done. I am the first person in my extended family to graduate from college. My family was redneck and poor. In retrospect, my youthful liberalism originated as much in a desire to be accepted as urbane and magnanimous as in real political wisdom. I had enough on my plate to prosecute my own self interest and the betterment of my own family, but I didn't have the foresight to understand that.

In particular, as black violence has become (or always was) the bane of every urban area, I wonder whether I might have listened more carefully to my father and grandfathers, who warned me that I was romanticizing blacks. My maternal grandfather was a bootlegger, and he fought with black gangs for turf.

He tried to tell me, lo! so many years ago, that the liberal attempt to always paint blacks as victims was misguided and dumb.

Posted by: Shouting Thomas on May 5, 2008 12:23 PM

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