Talk It Out: Poltical Correctness

Opinions Columnist

Have some respect

Texas State students must strive to be more politically correct while at school, work and when interacting with friends and family.

Sadly, many people who speak insensitively can offend someone and therefore come off as ignorant and insulting. Students should educate themselves about politically correct terminology and strive to use it in everyday conversation in place of offensive terms.

It is vital that students attempt to understand those who may be radically different than themselves, and part of that is understanding what can be construed as offensive, hurtful or triggering.

This ensures people from a wide variety of backgrounds can feel comfortable in mixed company without the constant fear of an unwitting insult being thrown their way. Political correctness is a simple, common sense outline for how to speak and act without making others uncomfortable.
Simply put, political correctness is basic courtesy.

Hopefully, everyone was taught basic manners growing up. So, political correctness should not be hard to put into practice. Being politically correct changes how a person says something, not necessarily what they say. It is something everyone can do that will have a positive effect in all social situations.

Our lives would simply be better if we treated each other with the respect that everyone deserves, and political correctness is part of that respect. Changes are needed to make men and women of different ethnic backgrounds, religions and other demographic distinctions more equal.

Tell it like it is

Political correctness has its place, but can be easily taken overboard.

Constantly monitoring what everyone says is not necessary. Respect can be easily achieved without walking on eggshells or trying to utilize the newest politically correct lingo.

Politeness is important, but the politically correct standard of never offending anybody is not only impossible but maddening. People can find ways to be offended no matter how carefully one treads. Some people are just determined to take offense. Others may even be offended by commonly accepted politically correct terms, and there is no way to prepare for that.

Politically correct terminology does not take into account people who do not have the education to put names to their experiences. Using politically correct terms commonly used only in academic circles may not be the best method of communication. It can come across as condescending or could put up a barrier that blocks true understanding.

Many people feel more comfortable describing their experiences using terms that could be considered offensive to some, simply because that is what they are most exposed to. In this circumstance, being politically correct is almost useless. It is difficult to explain how a term is supposed to be offensive or oppressive to a person when that same person uses this term in a way that is not offensive or oppressive to them.

Ultimately, there are appropriate times and places in which politically correct speech is imperative. Additionally, being polite and respectful is always best. However, it does not need to be taken to such an extreme that every single word is carefully chosen and stripped of any loaded meaning. It breeds arguments, gets in the way of the true experiences of the uneducated and oppressed and puts constant burden on the speaker when there need be none.


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