Political correctness, while noble in its cause and virtuous in its intent, eventually becomes a vice upon any free society. Those men and women who enforce political correctness upon the unwilling masses are the P.C. Police.
The problem with them is that they are more like a Gestapo. They want to determine what one can or cannot say or do for the sake of not offending anyone, rather than allow the greater society to deem certain actions, ideas, or language to be taboo.
While many find a self-imposed avoidance of language deemed offensive by social norms a good idea, “thought-police” who coerces others to avoid what they may personally find offensive is inherently oppressive and restricts the freedoms of the people. If a certain action is found offensive, those who go against that norm will be shunned. There should not be a role for the P.C. Police.
As society progresses, more and more things rightfully have been and rightfully will be deemed offensive and many things previously thought of as taboo have been deemed to be acceptable.
For example, many of the words in comedian George Carlin’s “Seven Dirty Words”, spiked in popularity in the 1960’s, and are now used commonly (just ask your friendly neighborhood pottymouth).
On the other hand, the likes of Dr. King and President Kennedy commonly used the term “negro” to describe African-Americans, a word on the decline since the 1970’s. And another term, which sounds like “coffee”, has been on the decline since the Civil War.
Ever-changing societies have ever-changing ideas and ever-changing language, it is a progressing collective which ought to dictate what ideas one should hold, not individual members of the P.C. Police who are offended by those ideas.
A popular form of political correctness is the war on “cultural appropriation”, which concerns mostly white Liberal millennials who take ten years to order at Starbucks more than it does anyone else.
Asians, for example, have been through head taxes and Internment and continue to face great problems. As someone of Asian descent, I couldn’t care less if Fred Flintstone learns judo in a mildly racist scene (for the time, it was 1960), or if Katy Perry dresses up as a geisha, or if Linda Hunt plays Billy Kwan.
If someone finds something offensive, and others agree with him/her, that alone will discourage people from doing said offensive things. It’s why actors don’t play Mr. Yunioshi anymore: because people would be offended and rightfully boycott that movie. But to have a thought police enforce their ideals limits free expression. Freedom of speech, after all, includes the right to offend and the right to have no friends.
Political correctness goes from annoying socially to downright dangerous politically, for two reasons: First, the P.C. Gestapo can silence opposition and suppress ideas by dismissing them as “offensive”. Second, and even worse than silencing political opposition, is that it is enabling actual fascism. Which is what we’ve seen happen in both Canada and the U.S.
Donald Trump, who is vying to become the first orangutan president in U.S. history, is being given a free pass by many to call Mexicans “rapists” and “murderers” and bragging about grabbing women by their nether regions as simply “not politically correct”. Political incorrectness is seen at worst as not fitting of the next groper-in-chief and at worse a heroic act of fighting against the establishment of political correctness.
This is a classic case of the political pendulum effect. The farther the pendulum swings one way towards political correctness, the further it swings the other way in retaliation. Racists, xenophobes, misogynists, and other Deplorables once silenced by voluntary political correctness now have a voice to follow, a cult-of-personality to worship, and an excuse to express their deplorable ideas: to rally against political correctness.
Western civilization has come to a point where a large contingency of people are so sick of the excessively politically correct establishment that they have come to see political incorrectness as a virtue, no matter how offensive the idea. One must realize that fascism only grows from fertile ground of anger and frustration against the establishment, and that political correctness is creating that fertile ground.