On the couch: Discuss your ‘PC’ problem (column)
Special to the Daily
Donald Trump is a misogynist. If not, he’s determined to win the title.
This guy is gunning for the finals of American Chauvinist Ninja Warrior. The last obstacle will melt before him and his bare chest — and that obstacle will be a “she.”
On the morning after his coming-out debate performance, Trump didn’t just double-down on his response to Megyn Kelly’s question about his Twitter trail of female put-downs. He quadrupled-down. She’s a “bimbo,” he re-tweeted. So, what’s left to say?
This guy called whom a pig?
But, alas, sexism is not the sole subject of this commentary. And, I regret to inform The Donald, neither is he.
I do credit him for today’s topic, which came from his boorish retort to Kelly. It was this:
“The big problem this country has is being politically correct.”
This drew loud applause from Republicans assembled.
What I want to know is: Why is “PC” your problem, GOP audience ? Please recline on the couch while I take out my notepad because this terminology has fascinated me for some time.
I realize that “political correctness” means many things to many people. Depending on what the meaning is, one could consider it a serious problem, I guess.
Is it “politically correct” simply to go along with the political flow of the moment? If so, then “PC” amid the “war on terror” meant flag pins all around and saluting — Fox News-style — the invasion of a country on trumped-up pretexts. It meant believing, or saying, that one could wage war on “terror.”
“Politically correct”? Maybe it is dangerous to leave the last word on this matter to Webster’s – that’s what dangerous academics do – but Webster’s defines the term as the condition of agreeing that “people should be careful to not use language or behave in a way that could offend a particular group of people.”
If that’s “the big problem in this country,” as Trump asserts, our problems really are quite small.
I was pleased to see how Webster’s frames the matter because it’s what I’ve always held “PC” to mean – hardly an epithet.
That definition of “PC” rejects the employment of stereotypes: the degradation of women, the dismissing of ethnic minorities and non-Christian faiths.
And come to think of it, all of that is what has boosted Trump to his titanic two-digit support among Republicans. I can think of nothing else.
Hear those who decry political correctness most emphatically: Stereotyping is what made America great. What this country needs to revisit is some time-honored preconceptions:
Being politically correct means not calling whole groups of people thugs, murderers and rapists based on acts of a few thugs, murderers and rapists.
Being politically correct means seeing all persons as equal regardless of sexual orientation.
Being politically correct sees no war with Islam, though some people who call themselves Christians spoil for it.
Speaking of Christianity, to my ear, and based on Webster’s definition, being “politically correct” is exactly what the Golden Rule – Matthew 7:12 – denotes. It is impossible to generalize about others when the assignment is to treat each as one would treat one’s self.
We can understand why Trump has a problem with political correctness because to set aside generalizations and stereotypes is to make one subservient to one’s own desires and fears. As Trump said in the debate, he has no time for that.
Now, I can understand why some find “PC” to be mealy-mouthed and touchy-feely. But, why could it cause any American’s blood to boil?
Please explain, dear GOP audience member. Explain how a robust denunciation of “political correctness” fits in with that line in Matthew.
Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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