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17 USC 102

Political Correctness: A Culture of Silence

November 12, 2018

 

Have you ever said anything stupid in your life? Anything you wish you could take back? Evidently, many people in America have not made this mistake, given their outcry of anger when a public figure says something dumb or “inappropriate”.

 

I couldn’t help but think these thoughts with Megyn Kelly, host of NBC’s Megyn Kelly Today, currently being torn apart by many Americans due to her controversial comments about the “Blackface” Halloween costume. In the bit, Kelly did the unthinkable: she said what she was thinking.

 

In a country that has been repressed by extreme political correctness, saying what you actually mean is frowned upon as long as others don’t agree with whatever it is you’re saying. For those of you that missed it, the longtime former Fox News host asked the question “What is racist?” about the Blackface costume and followed that up by claiming that when she was a kid, “that was okay as long as you were dressing up as like a character."

 

Since Kelly’s comments, NBC has canceled her show and people across the country have shamed Kelly, including some of her own colleagues. Were her comments insensitive? Probably. Were they in poor taste? Perhaps. But do they really warrant the cancellation of her show? The public outcry that fueled NBC's ultimate decision only goes to show how the social justice warriors of the far left are not satisfied until they get the flesh they crave from someone who dared to ask a question that may offend people.

 

I am not at all defending the blackface costume—it certainly has a racist history. She certainly deserves some of the criticism she’s gotten, but destroying her livelihood for a few insensitive comments? That’s absurd.

 

Of course, Kelly ended up doing what all public figures do when they are scolded for saying something deemed inappropriate: she apologized.

 

Kelly started a somber TV segment with, “I want to begin with two words: I'm sorry. The country feels so divided and I have no wish to add to that pain and offense. I believe this is a time for more understanding, more love, more sensitivity and honor. Thank you for listening and for helping me listen, too."

 

And with that, another public figure has been silenced by the culture of fear being created by many Americans that are hurt by words that should have no impact on their lives. God forbid a person actually speak their mind.

 

Kelly is just one of many people who have fallen victim to PC culture. In 2016, actor Chris Hemsworth dared to dress up as a Native American for a New Year's Eve party—a Lone Ranger-themed party. Everyone knows that The Lone Ranger, both the 2013 film  and the 1950s TV program it is based on, features a crucial Native American protagonist, as well as a number of other Native American characters.

 

Apparently, the truth is irrelevant when it comes to what is and is not offensive. Nonetheless, the floodgates of the offended were busted opened and Hemsworth was publicly vilified and demonized for his costume.

 

"I was stupidly unaware of the offense this may have caused and the sensitivity around this issue,” Hemsworth apologized following widespread social media backlash. “I sincerely and unreservedly apologize to all First Nations people for this thoughtless action."

 

You weren’t aware of the offense because there is no offense, Chris. And for anyone who does take offense: grow up. It’s a costume party. Get on with your day. How many of these fake apologizes do people need? How many opinions need to be silenced?

 

Remember the controversy about the Washington Redskins team name? A 2016 poll found that nine out of ten Native Americans aren’t offended by it. If Native Americans aren’t, than why should anyone else? A lot of the time that public outcry over words is not even coming from those who are supposed to be offended.

 

As I sit here and defend celebrities, it must also be acknowledged that, ironically, celebrities are a fairly influential driver of this outrage. Hollywood has become a breeding ground for self-righteousness. It is not uncommon and not unsurprising that actors and actresses loudly impose their political beliefs upon average Americans, telling people how they should live their own lives. We have seen celebrities spit their holier-than-thou opinions time and time again, whether it be on Twitter or at awards shows, because of course everybody knows that the advice of someone who pretends to be someone else is oh-so-valuable.

 

Professional whiners like Meryl Streep and Amy Schumer are both archetypes of this phenomenon. All the actors and actresses that feel the need to scold everyday Americans for how they live should go back to doing what their good at: acting. Grab your trophies, honors, and lavish lifestyles and go home to your secluded ivory mansions.

 

It is no secret that this culture of repressing thought expression is associated with the Democratic Party. This article is not some right-wing rant—it is simply the truth.

 

Despite this mass culture that has been forming over the past several years, there is certainly many people who feel that it has gone too far. My proof? Look no further than the 2016 election. Political correctness has gotten so bad that people actually voted for that guy from The Apprentice. A man with the composure of a five-year-old has access to the nuclear codes because people were so fed up with today’s society of rhetorical circumspection. Americans decided to vote for the man that represents everything that political correctness does not, regardless of how unstable or how incompetent he may be.

 

Donald Trump thrives off of PC culture. He uses it to his advantage. Every demand of an apology from a public figure is a red vote for him. It is ironic that the most extreme liberals who revel in PC culture are the ones helping Trump the most. Perhaps his victory makes more sense than many of us had previously thought.

 

So, a word of advice for leftists: next time someone slips up and says something stupid, give them a pass. Bill Maher said it best on his HBO show, Real Time with Bill Maher, when he claimed, “Republicans apologize for nothing, Democrats for everything. Can’t we find a balance?”

 

Everyone says stupid things. And next time someone says something that you believe is offensive, let it go. Or don’t. It’s completely up to you. But just know that you may be helping the Donald win re-election in 2020. As long as you keep whining, they’ll keep winning.

 

Photo Credit Charles Sykes, Creative Commons

 

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