Neil Gaiman on political correctness

I’ve seen this quote from Neil Gaiman about “political correctness” making the rounds lately. Even though it’s from a few years ago (on Valentine’s Day, no less), it’s still pretty apt.

I was reading a book (about interjections, oddly enough) yesterday which included the phrase “In these days of political correctness…” talking about no longer making jokes that denigrated people for their culture or for the colour of their skin. And I thought, “That’s not actually anything to do with ‘political correctness’. That’s just treating other people with respect.”

Which made me oddly happy. I started imagining a world in which we replaced the phrase “politically correct” wherever we could with “treating other people with respect”, and it made me smile.

You should try it. It’s peculiarly enlightening.

I know what you’re thinking now. You’re thinking “Oh my god, that’s treating other people with respect gone mad!”

Happy Valentine’s Day.

Neil Gaiman

I’m surprised that this hasn’t already spawned a bunch of “Neil Gaiman Nails It” clickbait articles, but it’s a good thought experiment nonetheless.

I’m not a fan of coded language or dog-whistle phrases because I’d rather people say what they want to say. Except of course, they can’t, even when everyone knows what they really mean.

political correctness meets racially coded language

Even worse when people try to turn what’s intended to be a good thing into a bad thing by their phrasing, oddly by reducing it to its initials. Politically correct becomes “PC!”, social justice warriors1 become “SJWs!”

Because as we all know, our lives would just be so much easier if people didn’t have to think about the things they say and how those things might affect other people before they say them. 🙄

Oh well, at least it’s the freakin’ weekend, y’all!

1 Because, seriously, what the hell is wrong with wanting to be a warrior for social justice?

Unless you want to be a wizard… or a rogue… even a paladin!

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6 Responses

  1. August 7, 2015

    […] via Neil Gaiman on political correctness | urban bohemian. […]

  2. December 6, 2015

    […] kleine Leseliste für Interessierte befindet sich am Ende dieses Beitrages, aber ich denke, dieses Zitat des Schriftstellers Neil Gaiman ist ein guter […]

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