Do you remember the 1964 movie “Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb”? In any event, that movie title inspired today’s column because of its obvious tongue-in-cheek nature.
To be politically correct:
Thou shall not look another person in the eye while walking down the hall at work or on the street. That person may feel intimidated by your bold and uninvited eye contact.
Thou shall not hug a co-worker, male or female because that person could consider it sexual harassment. In their dreams.
Thou shall not comment on the appearance of others even when the comment is an undeniable fact because the truth could land you in a costly liable suit.
Thou shall not discuss politics or religion because someone is bound to be offended or prove their ignorance.
Thou shall not attempt to have serious and thoughtful discussions with people outside of your “safe” group because someone is sure to have self-esteem issues and cannot handle conversational give and take.
As we frequently stated in previous columns, political correctness filled the vacuum left by parents who stopped teaching their children self-control and good manners. Such abandonment of their duties by parents who chose the I’m-your-buddy parenting style resulted in the subsequent behavioral vacuum we now have.
However, children and some adults need guidance. Consequently, the abandonment of parental obligations allowed persnickety buttinskis to gleefully fill the void by micromanaging our thoughts, speech, and actions. And thus, political correctness was born.
In many cases, the persnickety buttinskis made preemptive strikes by making assumptions on behalf of those who neither spoke up to complain about an inconsequential or non-existent issue nor cared to do so. If it was of no importance to the assumed aggrieved parties, what gives anyone the right to jump in and take uncalled for and often silly action?
At a college preparatory school run by Sisters Mary SOB, a few odd warnings to the young ladies in their charge caught our attention. “You must not wear pearls because they reflect the bosom area.” or “Do not step over water puddles in the street when boys are nearby because the puddles reflect your underwear.”
Clearly, those Brides of Christ had too much time to reflect on what they gave up and applied little common sense to real life issues. No matter how horny a teenage boy may be, peering at 6 or 7millimeter beads would surely make them cross-eyed if not blind from squinting, even if they got extremely close to the pearl necklace. Besides, squinting is not a good look on anyone, not even drop-dead gorgeous guys.
The same goes for the puddles on the street. Even if unusually dedicated and curious boys decided to spend rainy days sitting on the curb staring at water puddles, the likelihood of glimpsing ladies’ underwear is close to zero. People tend to leap over rather than daintily hover over puddles.
A recent visit with a high school girl who attends a local private school uncovered another fixated thought process like that of the good sisters. When the students asked the powers that be about the school having a prom, the response was archaic if not laughable. “There will be no prom because proms lead to pregnancies.”
Well, we hate to burst those puritanical bubbles, but if we followed the path of the school’s logic or lack thereof — shopping leads to pregnancy; movies lead to pregnancy; mowing the lawn leads to pregnancy. But in each case, the activity must stop long enough for the pregnancy-related action to take place.
And the most important rule of surviving in a PC world:
Thou shall not utter the words “the government should do something about (blank)” because the government will step in and you will not like the outcome.
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