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Ed Driscoll

Newest Gripe from the Gray Lady: Your Car Could be Racist

June 22nd, 2013 - 4:28 pm

Margaret Dumont on the Hudson has to get the vapors about something; this time it’s car brand names. (Link safe; goes to Hot Air):

Jeep, a division of the Chrysler Group, explained that its market research revealed a marked fondness for the name. The 2014 version, said Jim Morrison, director of Jeep marketing, “is a new, very capable vehicle that has the Cherokee name and Cherokee heritage. Our challenge was, as a brand, to link the past image to the present.”

The company says it respects changed attitudes toward stereotyping. “We want to be politically correct, and we don’t want to offend anybody,” Mr. Morrison said. Regarding the Cherokee name, he added: “We just haven’t gotten any feedback that was disparaging.”

Well, here’s some: “We are really opposed to stereotypes,” said Amanda Clinton, a spokeswoman for the Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma. “It would have been nice for them to have consulted us in the very least.”

But, she added, the Cherokee name is not copyrighted, and the tribe has been offered no royalties for the use of the name. “We have encouraged and applauded schools and universities for dropping offensive mascots,” she said, but stopped short of condemning the revived Jeep Cherokee because, “institutionally, the tribe does not have a stance on this.”

Having watched Yahoo’s NFL coverage utterly obsess themselves with the Washington Redskins’ team name this off-season, I was wondering when the next moccasin would fall — and fall it must, as life once again imitates Jonah Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism:

This is not to say that there are no racist conservatives. But at the philosophical level, liberalism is battling a straw man. This is why liberals must constantly assert that conservatives use code words—because there’s nothing obviously racist about conservatism per se. Indeed, the constant manipulation of the language to keep conservatives—and other non-liberals—on the defensive is a necessary tactic for liberal politics. The Washington, D.C., bureaucrat who was fired for using the word “niggardly” correctly in a sentence is a case in point. The ground must be constantly shifted to maintain a climate of grievance. Fascists famously ruled by terror. Political correctness isn’t literally terroristic, but it does govern through fear. No serious person can deny that the grievance politics of the American left keeps decent people in a constant state of fright—they are afraid to say the wrong word, utter the wrong thought, offend the wrong constituency.

By the way, there’s a curious quote in the above Times article; I think this is the first time I’ve heard anybody actually say, “We want to be politically correct.” Even the poor sods on the far left who wallow in political correctness think of themselves as politically incorrect (see also: name of Bill Maher’s old TV show); the very phrase “PC” quickly having become such a joke when it introduced into the general American vocabulary in the 1990s. But the worldview of the Frankfurt School, which imported the concept to America certainly isn’t. They’ve done their job infantilizing academia, the media, and the American overculture in general remarkably well:

Update: From the comments at Hot Air: “Are we going to also have to rename all of the cities, counties, and states named after affected minority groups? How dare the NY Times headquarter in MANHATTAN.”

Heh, indeed.™

Related: Roger Kimball on “The DMV as an Allegory of American Decadence.”

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