Monday, August 1, 2016

De∙cen∙cy /ˈdēsənsē/ (noun): behavior that conforms to accepted standards of morality or respectability.

(Photo by Carolyn Kaster, AP)
Supporters of Donald Trump tout his candidacy as a fight against what they see as political correctness run amok.  "It's a relief to finally have someone say what they want to say," someone who "tells it like it is!"

Yes, it's true that political correctness sometimes goes overboard, and that people making statements insensitive to some are often derided in ways vastly disproportionate to actual intent or harm.  It is also true that those on the conservative end of the political spectrum have born much of the brunt of such criticism, and that it is not always fair criticism.  Sometimes, there is no "there" there.

But people have always been able and are still able to "say what they want to say."  Political correctness simply means that now, when they say things that (yes, in the subjective view of some) express overt prejudices—things that are simply indecent—they are more likely to get called to the mat for it.

Something that has always been obvious, at least to those of us who believe the goals of political correctness to be worthy goals, is that "political correctness" has never been about telling people what they can or can't say.  It has always been about simple decency (something which neither right or left has a corner on).

In this case, there is definitely a "there" there.  There has, in fact, been a non-stop parade of "theres," beginning the day Trump kicked off his campaign by fearmongering about Mexican rapists and drug dealers.  

Time and time again, Donald Trump's very own words have revealed him to be not simply "politically incorrect."  They have revealed him to be a man who has no decency.

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