Re: GEN: "Political Correctness"
Jim Miller, Jr. (jmillerjr@LSFCU.ORG)
Fri, 9 Dec 1994 11:01:47 EST-5
Following this thread has made me stop and think. The vision that came
to my mind was disturbing to say the least. I saw a world where nothing
of personal importance was allowed in public - where anything that may
be considered offensive to anyone had been removed from all public view.
It was a sanitary, nice, neat, clean world where perfect little
cookie-cutter people lead perfect little cookie-cutter lives.
Still makes me shudder. I don't know how everyone feels, but I love the
world I live in. My world is a dirty, disgusting, dangerous place as
full of things that I dislike as it is things that I adore. I love the
fact that there are individuals who do things different than I do. If we
all followed the advice ofd some people on this list, I would never know
what Kwanza is, what different religions are, or even the perverse
thrill of wandering Times Square or the East Village at night in my
teenage years. Slavery, the holocaust, Nazi-ism, and war would be horrid
rumors whispered in dark rooms so as not to offend anyone.
Here in the USA, we are fortunate enough to have a law that was enacted
specifically for the purpose of protecting speech. In fact, if nobody
were to ever make offensive statements, such a law would be unnecessary.
Popular thoughts and pleasant speech have no need for protection. Our
First Amendment was made for the explicit purpose of protecting those
things that we may be offended by - may not necessarily want to hear. I
hold that right dear, as I do for everyone whether or not I like, or
agree with, what they say. I adore the Supreme Court decision that told
us that those "offensive" words we teach children not to use in polite
conversation are specifically protected by the First Amendment.
We may start by asking people not to wish us a "Merry Christmas" or
whatever, but this is censorship plain and simple. At this rate, with
this beginning, we'll start burning Bibles eventually. Censorship, in
any form, is wrong. I don't want to be protected from things that offend
me. They are a constant reminder of the freedoms we enjoy. I don't want
to lock myself in a sanitary room and hide from the world. I won't stick
my head in the sand. Offend me, if you can. That is your right, and I
would do nothing to take that right away.
Thinking I'll shorten the sleeves on my BSA uniforms and see who is
offended by my tattoos.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City