Oct 11, 2009


"Yeah," she said. "I'm not what you call politically correct."

"Oh yeah," I responded. I already knew this. Growing up near Philly she definitely had some east coast sensibilities when it came to vocalizing her thoughts. We were on our fourth pint and her lips became more loose with each sip.

"I don't get how PC you guys are out here. Everyone is so concerned with other's feelings. If people are offended it's their problem. I'm just making humour."

She had a point. Seattle is known for being very tolerant and accepting, but the truth is it's hardly a place that embraces ideas outside the norm of liberal sensibilities. Occupying a small place in the Puget Sound I've learned one thing. Self righteousness is in no way exclusive to conservatives as I once mistakenly thought.

But what has become of us north westerners? Are we softer than our liberal east coast brethren? Have we not learned the lessons of George Carlin or Lenny Bruce? We're known for our passive/aggressive mentality, but do we fear confrontation or value others' opinions that much? On the flip side do we as Seatllites really have true compassion for those who may be hurt by words, even though our minority population is slimmer than most urban areas?

I sat with my roommate later and we discussed the issue. It was refreshing, if not as fun, to talk with an actual minority about language without alcohol clouding my brain. He understands that when I tell him he's a traitor to his race when he displays a trait that breaks all stereotypes of Mexicans that I do it in good humor. I'm really making fun of the white trash culture I grew up in where many harbored such ridiculous thoughts. The banter is fun and he is comfortable enough in his heritage to understand context is key.

I recognize that not all are like my roommate, but sometimes I'm prone to forget and put my foot in my mouth. I think I'll always be that way for reasons that may include stubbornness.

"I've always thought that the stereotype of the dirty old man is really the creation of a dirty young man who wants the field to himself." - Hugh Downs


JLee said...

I know what you mean. I think people have lost their sense of humor somewhat when it comes to stereotypes. Just watch "Blazing Saddles" lol

Miss Ash said...

I'm one of the PC police! Though every once in a while I'll say something completely inappropriate, usually to my coworker....who is more PC than me. She cringes while I laugh!

wigsf said...

In my experience, the left-coast is a bunch of people so uptight, they don't realize they are uptight. At least us easterners know we're uptight.

Pablo G said...

The PC Police needs to lighten up. When you're offending someone with intent you can rest assured that there are no doubts. People that get offended over nothing need to get some balls and get over the chip on their shoulders. The World is not responsible for their insecurities.
There are, however, certain words that shouldn't be used unless you're willing to get punched in the face. African Americans can use the N word, but no one else. Just like using the B word for Mexicans or making jokes about the Holocaust in the presence of jews. This has nothing to do with being PC, it has to do with having a general knowledge of the history of men and also a little self respect. If being a minority means disliking nascar and speaking several languages, then yes, I am a minority.

Kelli said...

Well said, Pablo. I completely agree that this PC crap has gone to far.