Political correctness has reached an absurd climax in the U.S. today. Outright racist language is attacked, and rightfully so, though only if it is used by the “wrong” people. (Read: whites can’t use the N word in any context, but blacks can–and they can also call whites “crackers, “whitey,” and other equally derogatory words with impunity.) A black man or woman calling another black man or woman an Oreo as a derogatory term is perfectly acceptable (meaning they are “black on the outside but white on the inside”) in writing, on television or in casual speech. A black person referring to any lawyer as a “Jew” is also perfectly fine and does not raise a problem with the thought police on network television (as in “I’m going to call my Jew”, meaning my lawyer, who could be white, Christian or Korean for that matter as the term is just a synonym for “lawyer” in some quarters) But the use of “niggardly” which as we all know refers only to ones unwillingness to part with cash, being stingy, miserly or ungenerous and has absolutely nothing to do with a racist term, is loudly called into question as a “racist” term because, you know, it sounds too much like the “N” word and heavens forfend anyone actually have to know the meaning of a word prior to raising the alarm and getting their grievance aired on national television.
Likewise this week the term “white is the new black” referring as anyone with the IQ above that of a potato knows to be a fashion statement–that the color white is replacing the color black as the “in” color in fashion circles. No matter; it offends the sensibilities of the senseless and must be called into question, quashed and banned from the language lest anyone suffer the slings and arrows of a perceived slur. Never mind that absolutely no one complained when the highly popular cable show “Orange is the New Black,” which obviously also refers to the same fashion cliche, first aired or at any time during its highly successful run. If prison jumpsuits were red rather than orange and the show was titled “Red is the New Black” then perhaps there would also be some outrage at the possibility of some Native American taking offense since the term could conceivably be construed as a racial slur as well. On the other hand, “Yellow is the New Black” would likely not raise many hackles as no one seems to have any sensibility whatever against real or perceived slurs against Orientals these days and blacks would likely not see any problem with that comparison as only comparisons to “whites” are banned. And if any Oriental complained, they’d be dismissed as nut jobs, told to grow the hell up, or perhaps labeled as “racist” for even suggesting that a racial slur was intended by such an obviously racial-neutral term.
Race baiting and the marketing of hatred is big business. Just ask any self-proclaimed “Civil Rights Leader” flocking to the scene of any area of civil unrest chanting “NO JUSTICE NO PEACE.” For my part, I will always speak my mind and write precisely as I please, and I will support the rights of others to do exactly the same as is their Constitutionally protected right. Anyone who does not like it is free to not read what I write and/or criticize me as she/he sees fit. That is the hallmark of a free and healthy society. Those who take offense are free to whine and pout at will; what they cannot do is impose their will on anyone other than those who lack the courage to oppose them.
Victor D. López
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