OCALA, Fla., February 12, 2014 — People say a lot about political correctness, yet nothing at all.
It is one of those subjects that generates passionate controversy from both sides. Surely, most of us have heard debates on the matter which ramble into pointlessness. Indeed, one can hardly make a point about the key aspects of political correctness because these are deemed unsuitable for polite conversation.
This is the saving grace of politically correct ideology’s proponents: Opposing viewpoints are called “bigoted”, “unenlightened”, “intolerant”, “outdated”, or, the mother of them all, “racist”. Those who support unorthodox ideas are viciously attacked and vilified so that others are strong-armed to a state of perennial submission.
Two high profile victims of politically correct inquisitions are Ted Rall and Roosh V.
Rall is a left-leaning columnist and cartoonist whose work is syndicated nationally. For years, he has provided keen insight about the follies of American political life; irrespective of whether this irritates leftists, rightists, or even centrists.
Roosh has built the career which every man surely dreams of. A career playboy who writes about relationships and the human condition, he speaks for a new generation of men that have no wish to be feminized. As one might imagine, his politics track rightward.
Despite having very different perspectives, both Rall and Roosh speak to heart of being factually honest in a politically correct world.
“Political correctness is about being careful about the way that you talk about and talk to people of color, women, and other historically disadvantaged minorities,” Rall explains to Communities Digital News. “The burden of political correctness is especially heavy on historically advantaged people, particularly whites, males, people who were members of the upper classes, etc.
“These days it manifests through such terms as ‘whitesplainin’,’ which refers to a white person telling a person of color about prejudice. (More often than not, it is a way to tell people to shut up.) The term was initially defined in the 1980s and early 1990s, but its roots go back to the identity politics movements of the 1970s. Feminism, gay rights, the movement for the rights of the handicapped to access public spaces, and so on all had identity politics at their core: special, focused interests outside of the broader New Left movement of the 1960s that coalesced around opposition to the Vietnam war and opposition to the extremes of American global capitalism.”
Rall notes that “(t)o some extent, these interest groups found themselves defined outside of the broader left and therefore needed to draw attention to their specific plight in order to advance themselves. But political correctness soon began to revolve around issues of language and terminology more than anything else. No doubt, language can be hurtful and hateful or excluding or diminishing.
“Today, political correctness has come to revolve around the struggle not to change the way that people relate to each other, but simply the way that they talk to each other. It’s mostly an issue of semiotics and linguistics. I would argue that it is mostly empty symbolism. After all, who cares if someone is speaking to you respectfully if they are oppressing you economically or in some other way?”
In a discussion with CDN, Roosh claims “(p)olitical correctness is the inability to speak negative or even neutral truths about women, homosexuals, and minorities. If you disobey this rule, you will be labeled a sexist, misogynist, homophobe, transphobe, or right-wing extremist. Mobs on Twitter and Facebook, spurred on by mainstream publications, will seek your personal information, place of employment, and then try to ruin your livelihood.
“In America, we have been granted free speech through the Constitution, but there are now serious consequences for speech that goes against leftist thinking.”
So, what was the chief cause of political correctness’s rise to prominence?
“In a sense, this was a partnership between left and right in American politics and culture,” Rall says. “The left segmented itself into identitarian politics after the great victories of liberalism in the 1960s and 1970s, and the right – I think this was on a subconscious level – was happy to watch them devolve into a series of schisms. There hasn’t been a unified left in the United States since the rise of identity politics, and I don’t think it’s a coincidence. There has been a resulting emptiness and shallowness in both the politics of the left and the right since the end of the culture wars of the 1960s, but political correctness has hastened this trend.
“In a sense, I think it works for many liberals and progressives because it doesn’t take as much effort to convince someone not to use an ethnic slur than it does to take to the streets in order to force transnational corporations into paying their workers decently or the military-industrial complex to stop ginning up fraudulent wars. Making revolution is hard work. Nagging people into using politically correct vocabulary takes no risk at all.”
The centerpiece of Roosh’s cultural criticism is a concept called “male feminism”. While many might be unfamiliar with this, it is a key tenet of today’s politically correct establishment. Roosh tells that “(t)here are two things which motivate most men: sex and power. Since male feminists voluntarily give up their power to women without a fight, we must conclude that by parroting feminist ideas, they are simply hoping to get laid.
“Instead of actually trying to be attractive men who learn how to approach and converse with women, it’s easier for these men to agree with irrational rantings on Facebook and Twitter and hope that one woman finds his agreement worthy of a glorious sexual reward, sort of like a child patiently waiting on Christmas Eve for Santa Claus to arrive. It must work some of the time if there are so many men doing it, but then we must ask if there is really a “reward” in having sexual intercourse with a feminist, who is more likely than not to be overweight and disfigured with tattooed and piercings.”