April 14, 2024

“Politically correct”: One of the biggest buzz words at the moment. When this phrase is said, there are various responses, from anger and frustration to inclusion and acceptance.   

With the election of President Donald J. Trump, the word seemed to be thrust into the limelight and now used in everyday conversations. However, this is not a new word.

The first appearance of the word found is by Justice James Wilson in 1793 during his decision in the Chisholm v. Georgia case, a case regarding state sovereignty.

It has now experienced a resurgence, especially with the past election cycle  as America goes through social growing pains.

With such great use, I feel the word has lost its meaning. It is now being used as a phrase to simply get clicks on articles or have people listen to what is being said.

People now take this meaning as “I don’t agree with you so I will not allow you to speak because you are wrong.”

This forces people to think more about what people will think of them and could possibly push them to not say anything at all in fear of offending others. By being too scared to offend others, this keeps people in their corners and not coming to an aggrement.

One example of speech being prevented becasue of not being “politically correct,” occurred at the University of California, Berkeley, in February 2017, when students started a riot to prevent speaker Milo Yiannopoulos from speaking on the campus. The students started to protest because they did not agree with what he had to say.

I understand the ideas that Yiannopoulos says can be controversial, but he still has the right to free speech granted to him in the First Amendment.

Instead of allowing a conversation to take place between students and Yiannopoulos about  differing views, people prevented open dialog and a spread of ideas from taking place.

It is odd to see a phrase accompanied by so much controversy. It creates division when it should create unity.

If people were to listen instead of arguing with each other, then maybe the term “politically correct” would be seen in a better light.

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