It seems like saying “political correctness” at the Republican National Convention is akin to cursing. Donald Trump and his followers treat political correctness as if it is the foundation of everything that liberals stand for. Democrats are in the party of thin skin, made-up rules, and crybabies, while the GOP is the party of freedom, honesty, and “tellin’ it like it is”. The issue seems fairly trivial, but it has received a lot of attention from politicians and the general public alike, so it’s time we took a close look at it.
Are You PC, Bro?
South Park took things to the extreme with the introduction of PC Principal, a strange hybrid of frat-guy and social justice warrior who goes to great lengths to ensure that no one at South Park elementary says anything offensive. I’m going to be a bit un-PC here and assume that this is where Donald Trump got all of his information on political correctness, since people who are politically correct seem to come second only to terrorists on his list of people he’s going to take down.
Is being PC a bad thing? Yes, as Trump defines it, it’s awful, but is it really a threat to the nation? No, not really. Political correctness is nothing more than a new face for the ages-old Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. In simpler terms, don’t kick someone in the shins unless you want them to kick you back.
Let Me Clarify
Now, I’m not going to lie and say that I’m siding with hyper-sensitive people who are easily offended. If someone you meet “assumes your gender” or “assumes your race” and gets it wrong, you just need to politely correct them, not scold them for misgendering you. Such extreme reactions are no better than Trump’s version of “telling it like it is”, and neither of them are even close to being politically correct. Political correctness in its true form, before it has been altered by politicians, requires nothing more than politeness and the understanding that your beliefs are not the only ones that exist. Is that so evil?
The Real Enemy
So what is Trump really fighting against? Well, let’s look at some of the times that Trump has cited political correctness as a major problem in this country: after telling evangelical leaders that they shouldn’t pray for Obama, when he was criticized for calling women “dogs” and “fat pigs”, and when he was attacked for making racist comments about a federal judge. What do all of these incidents have in common? Donald was being a jerk.
It may not be professional of me to say that, but if Donald wants people like me to avoid being so “politically correct”, then I won’t sugarcoat it. He’s an overgrown playground bully, a child who cries and pouts when he doesn’t get his way. That kind of attitude in any politician – especially a candidate for President of the United States – is a recipe for disaster. Dictatorships are built on unchecked authority; democracies are built on compromise. Trump is aiming for the former, while we as a country need to be aiming for the latter. Our goals do not align.
When Trump says that he won’t be “politically correct”, what he’s really saying is that he’s not going to apologize for being mean to people, which is funny considering how often he plays the victim after scathing attacks from news media. When the media makes negative claims about Donald Trump, he responds with things like “CNN is the worst. They go to their dumb, one-sided panels when a podium speaker is for Trump”. He asks for an apology when Justice Ginsburg publicly denounces him, but rarely apologizes to the countless number of people he insults in a manner far more crass than Ginsburg used in her statements. He even comes up with nicknames for those he doesn’t like (Crooked Hillary, Goofy Elizabeth Warren) in a way that is far too reminiscent of the name-calling scene from The Sandlot.
I won’t deny that some people take being politically correct too far, but the way Donald Trump characterizes political correctness is simply wrong. Any time someone calls him out for being mean, rude, or downright wrong, he is quick to declare that “PC culture is ruining this country”. In reality, the opposite is true. A culture of “screw it, I can say whatever I want and offend whoever I want because I’m the only one that matters” poses a greater threat to our country than anything else, and it is only a matter of time before Trump or someone else says something that creates major consequences for America.
Don’t Get Us Killed
The president, like any other diplomat in today’s world, too often finds himself navigating a minefield with every speech. Each and every word that comes out of Obama’s mouth is heard by millions and has the potential to change the reputation of the United States, so he is careful when he speaks. With great power comes great responsibility, and it is the duty of the people to select a president who will use his power responsibly. With that in mind, do we really want to elect a man whose favorite word aside from “great” is “loser”? I hope not.
If you’d prefer to see something that is completely politically incorrect instead, check out my newest Don T Rump rap video on YouTube.