Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Thankful For Political Correctness

Growing up in the 1970's, i remember the jokes comedians made about black men, the Irish, the disabled, Jews, homosexuals, women and any other group that wasn't British white male.
Fast forward 30 years and we have shows like Little Britain and Borat which are applauded for not being politically correct but are exactly the sort of shows that wouldn't have been funny 30 years ago because the sort of thing's they say and do were then the norm.
As if undermining the people applauding him, Borat writer, Peter Baynham, explained that: 'When Borat says controversial and 'un-PC' things, it is obvious it is because he is clearly an idiot, a little reminder, of why we don't say those things, and it's weird when you read people saying it was deliberately offensive. The laugh is a laugh of 'Oh my God, you can't say that!' People are laughing with shock, because we've reminded them of why it's wrong to say things like black people have chocolate faces'.
Far from being a mockery of political correctness, Borat shows a time before political correctness made things better and that is where the humour lies, laughing at the very sort of 70's racism and sexism that was so prevalent and ushered in the dire need for cultural and social advances.
A peaceful society is built upon respect and tolerance for all of it's members and since the days when Bernard Manning's jokes about Paki's was the height of comedy, Britain has become a more tolerant, fairer and more culturally aware society and the introduction of political correctness has helped promote that.
Political correctness reflects the kind of society most of us want to live in where offending people is frowned upon and it is only those who set out to deliberately be offensive who complain about the restriction of their freedoms to insult anyone they want at will. 
The phrase 'political correctness gone mad' can be heard being uttered by aggrieved people who remember the days when they could speak without fear of being accused of upsetting one minority in society or another.
Political Correctness has ushered in a time of respect and civility for all, where unnecessary offence is avoided and everyone in society has the same opportunities regardless of the colour of your skin, if you are in a wheelchair, if you are Jewish or if you have a vagina and how can anybody seriously say that is a bad thing?
The only freedom the anti-PC brigade has lost is the freedom to cause offence to another person and thankfully we have moved so far from the bad old days that no amount of whinging about political correctness will undo the immense good that it has done.

16 comments:

Keep Life Simple said...

Right, losing the option of speaking ones mind isn't a loss of freedom... in what world?

Of course, try to shut down pornography, now that is a loss of freedom right Lucy?

q

Keep Life Simple said...

When a person says something to be offensive, the target doesn't have to be offended. Yes, it is an option, but there are others options as well.

Q

Lucy said...

So on a scale of 1 to 10, how aggrieved are you that you are losing the option to mock the disabled and make racist, sexist and homophobic remarks to offend people?
You must be aggrieved because you call it a loss of freedom whereas the rest of us are not in the 1970's anymore and consider it a good thing.

Anonymous said...

were you alive in the 70's?

I didn't have to change my behavior at all. I was raised to be respectful to all people.

1. You use the word "must" with far too much conficence.

2. It is a loss of freedom of speech - people should have the right to be rude, evil, stupid without the government stepping in. they should also have to deal with the consequences...

3. you overstep your influence when you speak for "the rest of us"

4. i'm ont in the 70's and recognize that you just called me a racist, sexist, homophobe without being overt about it...

q

Lucy said...

My first line was 'Growing up in the 1970's' so yes, i was alive in the 70's.

So you are aggrieved on behalf of those losing the option to mock the disabled and make racist, sexist and homophobic remarks to offend people?

The rest of us (those not aggrieved or aggrieved by proxy) are glad that anyone who would still like the option to offend, or are okay with people that do, have been sidelined by society.

Keep Life Simple said...

Seems like David g has taken over your account...

Keep Life Simple said...

A person either believes in freedom or control. It seems you favor control. Hitler liked control.

Lucy said...

So are you aggrieved on behalf of those losing the option to mock the disabled and make racist, sexist and homophobic remarks to offend people?

Keep Life Simple said...

i didn't say i was aggrieved. i said it was a loss of freedom. it is an intellectual statement not an emotional statement.

are you able to understand the difference?

q

Lucy said...

Completely understandable you getting a bit snippy, the realisation that you are on the same side of the argument as the racists and the sexists can't be very comfortable for you.

I asked if you were aggrieved twice and you either chose to ignore possibly for reasons that you didn't want to further incriminate yourself or as above, you were uncomfortable with the answer considering the type of people who you were putting yourself alongside.

So, to ask it another way as you dipped your shoulder twice previously, are you happy to be defending the racists, homophobes, bigots, sexists and those whose views society rejected years ago?

Keep Life Simple said...

Lucy, you dont make the rules for me.

Lucy said...

Not me, society decides the rules and it decided that the views that you haven't denied supporting have no place in it today.
That is a good thing but puts anyone who does hold these views as very much a relic of a worse time.

Keep Life Simple said...

Actually i did say i use politically correct language but maybe you were too busy not reading what i wrote to notice...

Lucy said...

Let's see..loss of freedom..pornography...options.. alive in the 70s...no change in my behaviour...rest of us...called you a racist...david g...Hitler...loss of freedom again...don't make the rules for you...

Nope, i didn't miss the bit where you said that you used politically correct language.

Keep Life Simple said...

Right here... not very agile reader...


I didn't have to change my behavior at all. I was raised to be respectful to all people.

q

Lucy said...

I see so you hid it as an anagram in the bit where you said nothing of the sort. Very clever.