The Detriments of The PC Movement
As a Muslim-American, my conservative and often fundamentalist beliefs have often been a part of my identity. As an individual, and as a member of a religious group, I feel that it’s my right to express my opinions and speak on matters, without being met with hate. When a Muslim or similarly conservative member of a religious society expresses their views, they are sometimes met with dislike. It seems as if conservative beliefs are being withheld in society. There is an ever-increasing ‘Politically Correct’ movement flourishing in society. Its goals are to prevent hate speech, by limiting talk that seems inflammatory or disrespectful toward certain groups. Although the goal of the movement is to protect identities of certain groups, it ends up limiting, and othering members of groups with conservative identities. It does this by often incorrectly reading conservative views as being hateful.
In modern society, there are often norms in the Politically Correct Movement (P.C). These are traditionally Marxist views, and began with the Frankfurt School during the 1930’s. In Critical Theory, traditional, those who identify as Conservative are forced to withhold their views in society, and non-conservative beliefs, and more liberal views are widespread. The lack of the opposite side leads to a prevalence of liberal views, which leads to biased society. If a part of society cannot express its views on certain topics, its constitutional right of free speech is being invalidated. This term, as defined by “agreeing with the idea that people should be careful to not use language or behave in a way that could offend a particular group of people.” This phrase ‘a language… that could offend a particular group of people.” is an incorrect viewpoint, as there are various situations in which one group may consider harmful the same views which another believes is correct, and vise-versa often is plausible too.
A brief explanation of Critical Theory is that it was a criticism of traditionally Western identity. This theory was against traditional moral values, importance of religion, sexual restraint, heredity, conservatism, and patriarchy. In order to remove these traditional, conservative elements of society, one must infiltrate the society with the ‘new’ forward-thinking, liberal beliefs. This was evident during the 1960’s and the Vietnam War, along with the anti-war settlement. One important individual in the history of Critical Theory was Herbert Marcuse, who was a member of the Frankfurt School. The thesis that Marcuse developed was that “university students, ghetto blacks, the alienated, the asocial, and the Third World could take the place of the proletariat in the coming Communist revolution.” From this, we can infer that this PC movement intended to replace those with conservative views with those with more liberal views.
This movement has received an incorrect praise. Although the intended goal of being PC could have been beneficial to society, the limiting factor it imposes on those with conservative beliefs prevents conversations from occurring, and discussions being held about issues of religions, race, gender, orientation etc. Interestingly, the idea of limiting statements that are offensive also limits the ability to speak openly. An important example of this is the comparison of religious beliefs of certain religions to the beliefs of others. In certain doctrines, it is stated numerous times some seemingly anti-homosexual verses. The holy text from which the verses are derived from is strictly followed by the believers, as a strong part of their faith. If they were prevented from speaking their beliefs on the matter, the PC movement would restrict their right to freedom of religion as well. Recently, a bill was passed in the US, which allowed such people to experience a sort of equality. In the law, it is stated that ‘homophobic’, or anti-homosexual verses were not allowed to be spoken in the public. As a result of this, those against it were blocked from expressing their religious beliefs, some even being prosecuted.
Therefore, there are many systems in society which offer either benefits or detriments to individuals. Although some may pose as being beneficial, they sometimes have methods of encouraging separation among smaller groups in order to form larger groups which follow similar ideas. Some traditional, conservative beliefs such as patriarchal society, importance of modesty and views against immoral activities, may be forced to be abandoned as some aspects of society force one to embrace liberal views in order to stay PC. This forced change is often represented as removing bias, whereas it is actually steering one from their beliefs into believing those that are ‘allowed by society.’ This impacts natural views and beliefs on anything from the clothes society wears, to the rights of man.