Monday, March 25, 2013

Politically correct diction is dangerous – an editorial

In a recent editorial, I discussed a tragic story in which a politically correct euphemism led office workers to ignore a death threat against one of their co-workers. I pointed out that political correctness is inherently dangerous: it is a childish belief that the whole world is safe and comfy and cozy. When people use politically correct euphemisms, they are concealing danger – and thereby making the world more dangerous. Below are summaries of five other posts that illustrate the point.

Serial rapist escapes

A serial rapist (pictured) was serving a life sentence in a locked psychiatric ward. Even though the rapist had already escaped once and was therefore high risk, some nurse or doctor lowered the rapist’s risk level to “medium.” Apparently the nurse or doctor wanted to show “sensitivity” to the serial rapist, notwithstanding the rapist’s insensitivity to the women he raped.

When the rapist was being transferred to another location for medical treatment, the security people saw the word “medium” and didn’t bother to handcuff him. The rapist took advantage and escaped again. (Source)

Hospital will encourage more criminals to escape

After the rapist’s escape, hospital management published a report filled with politically correct euphemisms and weasel-words. The report slyly encouraged the staff to continue their “sensitive” behavior. (Source)

FAA spokeswoman muddles the safety of Boeing aircraft

A German reporter wrote an article for Spiegel Online about the reasons for the crash of Air France Flight 447, which killed all 228 people aboard. He interviewed a spokeswoman for the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), who abused the word issues in order to muddle the ways in which Boeing parts could cause a crash. Politically correct people constantly use the handy, shifty word issue as a euphemism for problem, threat, risk, danger, difficulty, logic, reality, deception, lie, hypocrisy, and many other words that politically correct people (chiefly women) feel are too “icky” to be said out loud or written down. (Source)

“Health issue” means everything and nothing

And speaking of issue, if you type health issue into Google, Google will report more than 2 billion hits – that alone tells you something is wrong. What precisely is a “health issue”? Is it a disease, a condition, a syndrome, a disorder, or a malaise? A symptom or an indication? A pathogen or an allergen? An epidemic, a pandemic, or a lack of money to purchase medicines?

Or is it poor health in general, sickliness, inability to remember to take medicines as directed, or ignorance that a disease may be preventable? Or is it a localized shortage of doctors or nurses or medicines, or an error in prescribing a medicine? Or is it smoking, indolence, sexual promiscuity, addiction to heroin, or the use of dirty needles? Or something else? (Source)

NH puts positive spin on kids’ deaths
On the government highways in New Hampshire, large signs offer the following advice:



What the government of New Hampshire meant, but was too politically correct to say honestly, is:




The Takeaway: We hear and read so many politically correct euphemisms every day that we frequently imitate them unconsciously. Please, try to break this habit. Remember that these euphemisms are valid only inside the fantasy world of political correctness. In the real world, they are invalid and dangerous. Avoid using them when you are writing or saying anything that could have real consequences in the real world.

See disclaimer.

No comments:

Post a Comment