Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Political correctness

By chance, I just came across a Web page on which all people using the term political correctness were dismissed as sexists, racists, or otherwise unrespectable.

I don't use the term often myself, but I have probably used it occasionally. I'd define it as mindless adherence to political opinions and attitudes because they happen to be fashionable, whatever they are and whether they make sense or not.

Thus defined, the term is relative to current fashions. Whenever sexism and racism happen to be fashionable, as they often were in the past, sexists and racists may be described as politically correct.

When socialism is fashionable, people who adopt socialism unthinkingly may be described as politically correct. Likewise people who support dictators unthinkingly when dictators are fashionable. And so on and so forth.

If you support the current fashion because you've thought it out and and can explain why it makes sense, then in a literal sense you're politically correct, but you don't deserve the label as I've defined it.