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  1. #1
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    Default I guess this is what peak political correctness looks like

    To anyone who doesn't know, Jonathan Chait has managed to run afoul of the oppression olympics decathletes over on twitter and in the liberal blogosphere more generally.

    Here is the offending material from New York:

    Not a Very P.C. Thing to Say

    How the language police are perverting liberalism.

    Some choice bits:

    Around 2 a.m. on December 12, four students approached the apartment of Omar Mahmood, a Muslim student at the University of Michigan, who had recently published a column in a school newspaper about his perspective as a minority on campus. The students, who were recorded on a building surveillance camera wearing baggy hooded sweatshirts to hide their identity, littered Mahmood’s doorway with copies of his column, scrawled with messages like “You scum embarrass us,” “Shut the fuck up,” and “DO YOU EVEN GO HERE?! LEAVE!!” They posted a picture of a demon and splattered eggs.

    This might appear to be the sort of episode that would stoke the moral conscience of students on a progressive campus like Ann Arbor, and it was quickly agreed that an act of biased intimidation had taken place. But Mahmood was widely seen as the perpetrator rather than the victim. His column, published in the school’s conservative newspaper, had spoofed the culture of taking offense that pervades the campus. Mahmood satirically pretended to denounce “a white cis-gendered hetero upper-class man” who offered to help him up when he slipped, leading him to denounce “our barbaric attitude toward people of left-handydnyss.” The gentle tone of his mockery was closer to Charlie Brown than to Charlie Hebdo.

    The Michigan Daily, where Mahmood also worked as a columnist and film critic, objected to the placement of his column in the conservative paper but hardly wanted his satirical column in its own pages. Mahmood later said that he was told by the editor that his column had created a “hostile environment,” in which at least one Daily staffer felt threatened, and that he must write a letter of apology to the staff. When he refused, the Daily fired him, and the subsequent vandalism of his apartment served to confirm his status as thought-criminal.
    .....

    After political correctness burst onto the academic scene in the late ’80s and early ’90s, it went into a long remission. Now it has returned. Some of its expressions have a familiar tint, like the protesting of even mildly controversial speakers on college campuses. You may remember when 6,000 people at the University of California–Berkeley signed a petition last year to stop a commencement address by Bill Maher, who has criticized Islam (along with nearly all the other major world religions). Or when protesters at Smith College demanded the cancellation of a commencement address by Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, blaming the organization for “imperialist and patriarchal systems that oppress and abuse women worldwide.” Also last year, Rutgers protesters scared away Condoleezza Rice; others at Brandeis blocked Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a women’s-rights champion who is also a staunch critic of Islam; and those at Haverford successfully protested *former Berkeley chancellor Robert Birgeneau, who was disqualified by an episode in which the school’s police used force against Occupy protesters.
    .....

    But it would be a mistake to categorize today’s p.c. culture as only an academic phenomenon. Political correctness is a style of politics in which the more radical members of the left attempt to regulate political discourse by defining opposing views as bigoted and illegitimate. Two decades ago, the only communities where the left could exert such hegemonic control lay within academia, which gave it an influence on intellectual life far out of proportion to its numeric size. Today’s political correctness flourishes most consequentially on social media, where it enjoys a frisson of cool and vast new cultural reach. And since social media is also now the milieu that hosts most political debate, the new p.c. has attained an influence over mainstream journalism and commentary beyond that of the old.
    .....

    I am white and male, a fact that is certainly worth bearing in mind. I was also a student at the University of Michigan during the Jacobsen incident, and was attacked for writing an article for the campus paper defending the exhibit. If you consider this background and demographic information the very essence of my point of view, then there’s not much point in reading any further. But this pointlessness is exactly the point: Political correctness makes debate irrelevant and frequently impossible.

    Under p.c. culture, the same idea can be expressed identically by two people but received differently depending on the race and sex of the individuals doing the expressing. This has led to elaborate norms and terminology within certain communities on the left. For instance, “mansplaining,” a concept popularized in 2008 by Rebecca Solnit, who described the tendency of men to patronizingly hold forth to women on subjects the woman knows better — in Solnit’s case, the man in question mansplained her own book to her. The fast popularization of the term speaks to how exasperating the phenomenon can be, and mansplaining has, at times, proved useful in identifying discrimination embedded in everyday rudeness. But it has now grown into an all-purpose term of abuse that can be used to discredit any argument by any man. (MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry once disdainfully called White House press secretary Jay Carney’s defense of the relative pay of men and women in the administration “man*splaining,” even though the question he responded to was posed by a male.) Mansplaining has since given rise to “whitesplaining” and “straightsplaining.” The phrase “solidarity is for white women,” used in a popular hashtag, broadly signifies any criticism of white feminists by nonwhite ones.
    The article, was received with less than open arms on the left.

    Vox: The truth about "political correctness" is that it doesn't actually exist

    Gawker: Punch-Drunk Jonathan Chait Takes On the Entire Internet

    And the list goes on.

    Anyway as a Conservative, non of this comes as any surprise to me.

    Apparently it is surprising when a Liberal like Chait has a weapon honed on his side of the isle turned against him.

    Your thoughts?
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  2. #2
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    This piece from the Washington Free Beacon sums things up nicely:

    Reaction to Jonathan Chait’s Essay on Political Correctness Instantly Proves Chait’s Thesis Correct

    ....

    The problem with this framing is that it presumes the angry rage mobs roaming Twitter in search of someone who has insufficiently checked his or her or its privilege are open to debate, to having their mind changed. That they’re interested in having a calm, rational discussion. This is a faulty presumption. It’s impossible to have a polite discussion on this topic because the outraged don’t want to have any discussion on this topic. As Chait puts it:

    If a person who is accused of bias attempts to defend his intentions, he merely compounds his own guilt. (Here one might find oneself accused of man/white/straightsplaining.) It is likewise taboo to request that the accusation be rendered in a less hostile manner. This is called “tone policing.” If you are accused of bias, or “called out,” reflection and apology are the only acceptable response — to dispute a call-out only makes it worse. There is no allowance in p.c. culture for the possibility that the accusation may be erroneous. A white person or a man can achieve the status of “ally,” however, if he follows the rules of p.c. dialogue. A community, virtual or real, that adheres to the rules is deemed “safe.”
    It’s hard to have even a calm, rational discussion with someone who thinks your only appropriate response is silence. That the only thing you can do is sit there and listen and nod your head, admitting that you have been blind to the truth and, yes, deserve the vitriol heaped upon you. I kind of hope that Chait is offered a speaking gig on a college campus just to see how quickly it’ll take for him to be shouted down and demonstrated against, petitioned and picketed.

    All this being said, I wonder if Jonathan Chait now regrets writing that conservatives should really watch their tone when they criticize the president. Probably not. Browbeating the opposition into silence is only bad some of the time.
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  3. #3

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    Agree wholeheartedly.


    I dunno, I stopped taking liberals seriously a long time ago. :p
    ~ F*ck this place that we call home! ~
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  4. #4
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    There are more than a few folks on Typo-c for whom I think this topic will hit a little too close to home.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Who would've guessed a movement combining pseudo-Marxist analysis with Rousseauian policies could end up eating its own?

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    Quote Originally Posted by lowtech redneck View Post
    Who would've guessed a movement combining pseudo-Marxist analysis with Rousseauian policies could end up eating its own?
    Why though.

    I'm enjoying every second.


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    "Liberals, degenerates, the Welsh..."
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  8. #8
    The Typing Tabby grey_beard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lowtech redneck View Post
    Who would've guessed a movement combining pseudo-Marxist analysis with Rousseauian policies could end up eating its own?
    In other words,

    74vOQ.jpg

    I have observed that "privilege" from the accusers corresponds to "believes in the presumption of innocence" while being a member of a non-protected, non-victim class;
    or while being a member of a victim class which is nonetheless not as oppressed as one's opponent.

    The proper answer, of course, is to treat each person as an *individual*. But that would require actual thought rather than an admixture of self-pity and envy shading into hate.
    "Love never needs time. But friendship always needs time. More and more and more time, up to long past midnight." -- The Crime of Captain Gahagan

    Please comment on my johari / nohari pages.

  9. #9
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    ^ pretty much.

    Luckily I think the country is ready for a breath of fresh air with regards to the path the country is taking.

    The left seems to be taking the same path the right took after two terms in power with regards to extremism.

    It will be fun to watch their firing squad form a circle.

    It's been years in the making, but the schadenfreude will be delicious.

  10. #10
    Mojibake sprinkles's Avatar
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    I find it ironic that merely being the opposition is in itself an insult.

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