A Master Class in Linguistic Suppression

July 28, 2020

Boston’s local National Public Radio news station, WBUR, recently interviewed Rutgers University linguist Kristen Syrett, an advocate for pushing the sacred cause of political correctness beyond its currently accepted boundaries. Presumably in the name of racial justice, Syrett wants to root out...

The Weaponizing of the American Language

September 13, 2019

The crisis of civilization that now affects the United States has little to do with the largely abstract public debate about capitalism vs socialism or big government vs individual freedom, and even less to do with the traditional (but largely illusory) war between Democrats and Republicans. The...

Actor Viggo Mortensen Uses a Word He Shouldn’t

November 13, 2018

What happens when concern about racism is focused on policing the words that antiracist people use, rather than the acts of actual racists? Americans have a serious and complex problem with the notion of free speech. While everyone accepts the dogma that freedom of expression is an absolute...

Baseball Commentator’s Words Put Racism in the Spotlight

October 25, 2018

When a culture focuses on slips of the tongue, it invites everyday racism to play out with total impunity. Commercial sports media have long sought to be a model for tolerance and racial justice. Whenever a commentator says something that could be perceived as politically incorrect, humiliation...

The Daily Devil’s Dictionary: Political Correctness and Being “Insensitive”

April 18, 2018

Political correctness strikes again, taking out an overenthusiastic basketball announcer. Public behavior includes not only the acts people engage in, but also the language they use. If a community’s laws regulate acts, the unwritten law of PC — political correctness — regulates the...