Political correctness seems new, I know, but it’s been around pretty much forever. Names, titles, words in general change. I mean, for a very glaring example, look at the history of how we (especially white people) have modified our words when speaking about black people. At the start of the U.S. we were complete assholes, and as we know, often used the derogatory term of nigger. Over time, due to political correctness, that became a word only used by nasty people and even nastier people. As this changed, the word negro took over. It was in dominant use for quite sometime, until again, because of political correctness, the generally used term was black person. This was general favored for several years until the current change to African American.
That is one of many examples. Irish people are generally not called Micks anymore. British people aren’t limeys anymore, and the use of the terms fag and flamer are falling out of use, even by many homophobic people.
Words change, and the way we reference people change, this is a constant over the long term. Languages evolve. The reason it seems like such a new and explosive idea is that we suddenly have many different groups of people all seeking to define themselves in their own way all at once right now.
This rise of the internet and subsequent ability to speak to so many others at once, and to be able to get together and talk has fueled changes in just about everything, including terminology, much faster than what we’ve seen before, and so, it’s only now that we see this “rampant political correctness”.
I don’t think it’s a problem though. I mean, I’m a pretty liberal person, but I do get frustrated and confused by some PC things, but I don’t disagree with them. Why should we have an issue with a group of people defining themselves? Who is anyone outside of that group to debate what someone in that group is allowed and not allowed to be comfortable with being called? Do we not have an ability to define ourselves? Why is this such a problem?
I know people get stuck in their ways, and having someone take what is considered societally normal and turn it on it’s head is uncomfortable, and this is true. It’s also something that people working for PC in any group does need to take into consideration. We are creatures of habit. It takes a while for things to change. The people who’s minds you are trying to change don’t have the same experiences. It takes a lot longer for them to change their minds. It’s so damn frustrating, and I know the utopian ideal is that people wouldn’t fight back and get annoyed with PC things, but they do, even fairly liberal people do.
It’s all a matter of lack of experience. I mean, even for me, as a liberal, open minded, trans, hippy chick, I still get confused, and admittedly a little uncomfortable, by this whole thing with new gender names. I don’t understand it, because I don’t live it. As I had pointed out in another post, I don’t have much for gender ambiguity, I’m a female, that’s about the end of it. So I don’t have those experiences, and it makes it more difficult for me to understand. Here’s the key though:
What I do understand is that people have a right to define themselves, whether I understand this definition, or the reasons behind it. I have absolutely no right whatsoever to take the ability to define themselves from them. It is not mine to approve, nobody has to go through my ability to accept something for it to be right or respected.
I get that it’s confusing. I can even understand why it can be annoying and frustrating, but what I can’t understand is why people get so up in arms about it. It’s okay to get out of your bubble. It’s okay for the world to change. As the saying goes, that really is the only constant.
Thank you for reading, and have a beautiful day sunshines!