This Careful Generation
By Roger W. Gardner June 19, 2008 Cross-posted from Stop The ACLU
This, my friends, in case you haven’t noticed, is a very careful generation. In fact, I’ve lived in this wonderful country of ours for a little over seven decades now, and this is without a doubt the most “careful” generation that I have ever had the misfortune to live amongst. Somehow we’ve managed to become the most careful people in the world, maybe the most careful people in history. We live in constant fear that we might inadvertently say something truthful that might offend someone, somewhere. We’ve learned to call this pervasive state of denial Political Correctness. But is it really Political Correctness, I wonder, or is it something else?
I ask myself, is this present pacifistic crop of Chamberlainesque appeasers really being “careful” of other people‘s feelings, or merely being cowardly? Are all of our so-called PCisms truly demonstrations of our consideration for others, or are they rather an expression of our fear of others? Are we avoiding confrontation with those who threaten our lives and our culture out of kindness and tolerance, or are we just desperately trying to avoid that confrontation? Are we perhaps concerned that we might just antagonize our antagonists even more by naming them? Are we hoping to avoid the inevitable nastiness of these confrontations by hiding behind this intricately-wrought screen of euphemisms called Political Correctness?
When you think about it, isn’t this really that same old weasely logic that in the 1950s induced us to call a Jew “someone of the Jewish persuasion”? As though they had somehow been persuaded to become a Jew. Isn’t this just the latest manifestation of that same old hypocritical crap? Did we also talk about “someone of the Christian persuasion” in the 1950s? I don’t think so.
In short, this is nothing all that new, it’s that old familiar circuitous obfuscation that wouldn’t allow us to call a Jew a Jew. Why? Would a Jew be offended to be called a Jew? Hardly. Every Jew I’ve ever known was proud to be a Jew. Could it be perhaps that we found that word so offensive that we could hardly bring ourselves to say it? Were these semantic acrobatics really evidence of our consideration for others or evidence of that intransigent American brand of anti-Semitism? Was this an example of some early form of Political Correctness in action? Or are we really talking about something else here. Something a little bit easier to understand, but something too awful to actually put it into words. Something called the truth.
Well, I’m going to get a lot of people pissed off right now — or at least I‘m going to give it a good try. You see, I’m getting sick and tired of being careful. I don’t know how the hell I ever let them talk me into all this [bull****] in the first place.
This all started when I read that incredible little article this past Christmas, which I’m sure you’ve all heard about by now, about that Santa school Down Under that instructed their student Santas to no longer say “ho-ho-ho”, because it had a double meaning in the American Black Community, and that some people might find it offensive.
My God, what have we become? We stand by meekly and watch as our wonderful English language becomes increasingly denigrated and devalued, we allow the primitive animalistic gruntings of our Black Inner City Gangsta Rap, pants-falling-off-the-butt “culture” to infiltrate and diminish almost every aspect of our lives: our music, our movies, our television, our sports, the way our kids act and dress — and now we’re going to tell our Santa Clauses not to say “ho-ho-ho” because it too closely resembles that Gangsta Rap word for “whore”?
Wait a minute. Isn’t there something wrong with this picture?
Who are the folks here who should be offended?
After that, I read another article that purported to be an investigation into the causes of the enormous increase in the murder rate in one of our largest East Coast cities — actually, two articles written explicitly to address this single major problem. However, throughout the entire two articles, not one mention was made of what had actually happened to this city. Not one single reference to the fact that this wildly escalating crime rate just happened to correspond to the most catastrophic societal upheaval in that city’s four-hundred year history. Not only did the articles not even mention these irrefutable truths, but somehow the author ingeniously avoided mentioning that any racial changes had taken place there at all. If someone didn’t know the actual facts of the city in question they would be left to surmise that the city had just suddenly started becoming more criminal for no apparent reason. This, my friends, is what currently passes for Political Correctness. But is it?
Here’s what happened: the Inner City turned Black and the crime rate soared.
Sorry, but that’s what happened.
And I really am sorry; because it was my city of origin that was the subject of these counterfeit articles. I was born and brought up there.
And this Black murder rate in this Black Inner City is a Black problem, not a White problem. These Inner City Black Gangstas are not selling crack because their great-great-grandmothers were slaves. And that disingenuous author who so adroitly skirted the most obvious by never once mentioning race, by referring to “these people and their drug problems” would have had that same delicate problem back in the 1950s calling a Jew a Jew.
The murder of young Black males by other young Black males in the Black Inner Cities is a Black problem and can only be solved by Blacks. Blacks who are willing to be honest with themselves. Blacks who are getting sick and tired of that criminal-worshipping, female-degrading, drive-by shooting, Gangsta Rap drug world of self-destruction. Blacks who are willing to listen to those honest and tough love messages of respected Black people like Bill Cosby, and even from those unapologetic liberals, like Juan Williams. Blacks who are willing to accept responsibility for their own lives and want to quit blaming everything on the Whites, who finally have the courage to disassociate themselves from those so-called Black Leaders, like Al Sharpton and that extortionist Jesse Jackson, who are nothing more than enablers, living off the suffering of others. Offering their followers that same old false comfort of self-pity and victimization by perpetuating the myth of White subjugation.
By pretending that this is still a White problem, that only White people are smart enough to fix it, those delusional liberals are only making matters worse. It’s trying to cure the alcoholic’s problem by telling him he has good reason to drink. And it just ain’t gonna work.
So, what are we really talking about here? Blacks? Jews? Racism? Anti-Semitism? No, we’re still talking about Political Correctness — or perhaps, more precisely, that same old cowardly dis-ingenuousness in it’s latest disguise? A problem we’ve been wrestling with throughout that whole tumultuous course of human history. It’s called moral integrity. Some people simply call it honesty.
Now, before all you liberals out there rush to get your ammunition and start bombarding me with those familiar epithets of Racist and Bigot, just answer this one simple question. If we are afraid to even identify a problem, how the hell can we expect to fix it? If no one can even address these issues for fear of being labeled a racist or bigot, then tell me how we are going to discuss the issues? With obsequious code words like “these people and their drug problems“? For God’s sake, what people are we talking about? The Swedes? The Chinese?
If the Chinese people were the major contributing factor to the rise of the crime rates in most of our major cities, then we should most certainly be able to acknowledge this fact and try to do something about it. But it isn’t the Chinese people who are causing these terrible Inner City problems, is it? And it isn’t always the Blacks. Sometimes it’s the Mexicans, and sometimes it’s somebody else. But, if we ever hope to do anything about these enormous and growing problems, we had better learn how to talk about them honestly. And have the courage to say who it is we are really talking about.
We have, it seems, traded our language of truth for some weak-kneed second-rate vocabulary of denial; and, most unfortunate of all, some of us are actually pleased with this ignoble transaction. They call it progressive; I call it regressive. They call it Political Correctness; I call it cowardice.
During this past Christmas season, when a television commercial were enticing us into thinking about buying a brand new Lincoln for our lover, while adroitly managing to circumvent that contentious word “Christmas”, substituting it with that inept and meaningless word “Holiday”, were these car manufacturers sincerely interested in promoting cultural inclusiveness, or just afraid of the ACLU? Was this just one more example of this new-fangled ideology called Political Correctness? Or was it just that same old-fashioned cowardice hiding its ugly head?
We are losing our national nerve. We live in constant fear. We are afraid of being sued, afraid of being attacked, afraid of being disliked, and we are afraid of being called names. Fear has infiltrated every area of our lives and corrupted our ability to be effective as a people, as a nation. We are even afraid to admit that we are afraid. We are even becoming afraid to be patriotic Americans.
The school board who lifts the Lord’s Prayer or the Pledge of Allegiance from that unfortunate school’s curriculum isn’t doing this out of some high-minded noble concept of inclusiveness — they’re afraid of being sued by some loathsome Dr. Newdow (described by one enthusiastic atheist as “…one of the greatest heroes in the war against religious demagogues”).
To attempt to hide this blatant cowardice behind some shining shield of Political Correctness is a lie which we can no longer ignore, and which we can no longer afford to tolerate.
When we choose to refer to our brave Israeli ally’s ongoing attempts to protect their tiny nation from that continuous generational onslaught from their vicious and hate-filled neighbors and their brutal suicide-bombers as an “Arab/Israeli conflict”, rather than calling it what it is — “The Arab War Against Israel” — are we not demonstrating to the world our unconscionable lack of moral fiber? Did we refer to that WWII horror show in the Pacific as some morally-neuter “Japanese/American Conflict”? Hell no.
If I get stopped by a cop for driving without a license, will he let me go if I explain that what I’m doing isn’t really illegal, that I’m really just an undocumented driver? We have become so accustomed to navigating through the perils of this world using these subtle subterfuges and lies we no longer even notice them.
On September 11, 2001 we were attacked by nineteen Muslim terrorists. They left final testaments clearly explaining their motivations for committing this horrendous crime against humanity. They wanted to kill the Infidels. And they killed 2,987 innocent people that day — and we have still not managed to conjure up the political will to profile Muslim men at our airports.
Does anyone still believe that this is truly an expression of Political Correctness, our good-hearted and sincere efforts to avoid offending anyone of a different faith or race? Or is this just one more instance of a government and an industry caving in to fear. The fear of being sued by CAIR or their faithful ally, the ACLU.
While Islamic leaders worldwide exhort their eager followers to kill the Infidel, and describe this monumental struggle with unabashed clarity as a War of Islam against the West, of Muslims against Infidels, our own president very carefully describes this same militant religion as a “religion of Peace”. We console ourselves with the comforting illusion that what we are really up against in this so-called War on Terror is just a small fanatical minority who have hijacked a “peaceful religion”. We ignore all information to the contrary, no matter what its source, no matter how valid. Islam has declared War on the West but, none the less, we must be very careful not to offend any Muslims. They might think we’re racists. CAIR might sue us. Jimmy Carter might get upset.
Somehow, my friends, before it really is too late, we have to come out from behind our warm and fuzzy euphemisms and have the courage to confront this world that‘s really there, not the one we wished was there. We can no longer blame our dishonorable inaction on Political Correctness. For, when all is said and done, our so-called PC culture is nothing but another form of cowardice. And this cowardice is not only never going to allow us to solve any of our problems, it’s going to get us killed.
Labels: ACLU, Liberals and Conservatives, Multiculturalism