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Ron Radosh

Political Correctness Run Amok

August 9th, 2013 - 10:20 am

We all know about the hazards and follies of political correctness. But this time, the powers that be in Seattle, and it seems New York City as well, have gone way too far.

The Office for Civil Rights in Seattle, a Fox News report informed us last week, instructed city workers about no longer using terms that some people in Seattle might deem offensive.

I wondered when first reading this if they were talking about scores of white employees using the N word. No, that’s not it. The words they are complaining about include the following: “citizens” and “brown-bag lunch.” Not to be outdone, New York City’s Department of Education warned about such dangerous words as “dinosaurs,” “birthdays,” and, last but not least, “Halloween.”

Now that I know you are busily trying to discern what could be wrong about using such words, let the good city fathers tell you. A member of Seattle’s Civil Rights Commission, Elliott Bronstein, readily explained in an interview with a local TV news program. “Citizen,” he explained, insulted the many people in Seattle who were there illegally and, hence, not citizens. Therefore, all those living in the area must be called “residents.” Well, I somehow think they don’t really mind, because as long as they can get driver’s licenses, a free public school education for their children, and all the benefits real citizens have, I don’t think they give a hoot about what they are called.

But don’t dare call a lunchtime meeting and announce that it’s a “brown-bag lunch,” unless you wish to be brought up on charges of racism and perhaps lose your job for offending African-American colleagues. You see, Mr. Bronstein explained, for many African-Americans, “the phrase brown bag does bring up associations with the past when a brown bag was actually used…to determine if people’s skin color was light enough to allow admission to an event or to come into a party that was being held in a private home.”

And you thought it referred to carrying your lunch in a small brown bag, didn’t you? If that is your response, you clearly are a racist. Well, it seems somebody better tell gourmand Brooke Newberry at The Savory. Yes, last week she provided  a new recipe for “a brown-bag baguette sandwich.” The shame! Moreover, it calls for the use of goat cheese and fennel, clearly two ingredients used only by white elitists who are members of the corporate rich, all of whom by nature are racist. We all know these folks would never carry their lunch in a brown bag unless Gucci made it. So to use this in the recipe’s title is to use a hidden code word that is meant to let her audience know she is writing for fellow racists. I think all readers should immediately phone the NAACP and demand a campaign against her.

As for New York, pity those poor youngsters who are at the age when they want to rush down to the Museum of Natural History to go see the dinosaur skeletons. Suddenly, New York City is concerned with the rights of religious fundamentalists, for whom the word “dinosaur” conjures up thoughts about evolution, and hence might offend them. As for Halloween, religious Jews do not celebrate it, and to Jehovah’s Witnesses, it “suggests an affiliation to Paganism.”

So New York City officials say that in prohibiting these terms in schools, they are not guilty of censorship, since they are only carrying out “normal procedure.” And birthdays, it seems, create “unpleasant emotions” for those students whose birthday is not the same day as the fellow student whose parents brought in cookies to first grade for students to share as they sing Happy Birthday at lunchtime.

I hope, God forbid, that the mother did not put those cookies in a brown bag! Then her little darling will be guilty of double jeopardy, or three sins, if her or his birthday falls on Halloween.

I’m only happy that in my childhood we didn’t have civil rights divisions in education departments and at City Hall in New York City.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
I grew up in the South and remember as a child there were two water fountains in the town park. Since the one labeled "colored" was more my height, I always used it. I thought it meant the water had minerals like rust in it, always tasted OK to me.

The story above tells you I'm old and remember when things were segregated...I have never heard that brown bags were used to "grade" skin color. Never heard of this, never would have thought of this, don't believe it now. People are just making up new ways to be offended and offensive.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
In the font I see before me the t looks something like an anchor. As an Army vet, I am offended.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
People with mental health issues are now making public policy. It's an infestation of crazy morons that runs from the Presidency to your city council. No nation that ever existed can survive institutionalizing this madness.

If I was 20 now I'd move to the Third World. Cheaper and less nuts. Honestly, despite the stereotypes, the average Egyptian or Guatemalan are erudite statesmen in comparison.

Prostitutes are engaged in "survival sex," I'm "cisgendered" and using "lame" is an ableism. Obama's now going to Section 8 all white neighborhoods and the DOJ and IRS and the media are arms of the Dem Party, the nuttiest group of racial bigots around. Feminists are the blame, whine and self-pity brigade which never shuts up for one single second and all Hollywood movies are too white, plus everyone's a racist but actual racists.

I could write a million word essay about these idiots. Hopefully a tsunami won't wipe out San Francisco, New York and Seattle or Al Queda get arrested for smoking a cigarette with 100 ft. of a Fed. building before they blow it up.

The last 30 years are proof mental cases make the most ardent activists because they are permanently stuck on angry, while normal people kinda just hang out. I'm moving to Morocco.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (55)
All Comments   (55)
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how about we ban all words said by politicians, so when they get up to speak they can only have silence.

Because I find that anything that they say is offensive, abusive and demeaning.

36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Elliott Bronstein and friends, you are commie b45tards. I hope that didn't offend. Seriously, do you use drugs? Or are you off your meds?

What is wrong with you? Get help.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
And some people scoffed at George Orwell....
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
What about those of us who are offended by the language used in many movies?
I just turn the channel or don't go but those who make those films should know that. In some films, without the F word, there would be do dialogue.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
I have turned off many a movie because I grew tired of the dialogue, not the acting or the plot.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
"The powers that be..."

I would change the powers that be to Nanny Staters.

I wouldn't refer to them as "influential" but as small minded, agenda driven control freaks.

Who must be relentlessly mocked...

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/health/2012/06/02/soft-drink-industry-fights-back-depicting-bloomberg-as-nanny/



36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
When are we going to acknowledge that we have a "management crisis" in our hands?

Did you notice that things started to get worse as the MBA programs started to spew their "experts on nothing but being the manager" crowd?

We stopped being a meritocracy and we are now a mediocracy where every boss is an idiot whose only talent was to warm the bench at some college for a few years.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Too far? The first step is too far. It was the green light.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
PC run amok is all about controlling the public discourse through bugaboos, and this is the crux.
Totalitarian societies are controlled by 'thought police', both through subliminal messaging and outright intimidation. Many powerful leftists have used these tactics throughout the west, and under the reign of Obama its effects are running rampant.
In any event, if one does not understand the 'messaging' one is unprepared to fight it. And, not fighting it will leave one (eventually) under the boot of tyranny, albeit a 'softer' kind within America - http://adinakutnicki.com/2013/07/15/america-no-longer-a-tyranny-in-the-making-that-ship-has-sailed-commentary-by-adina-kutnicki/

Wake up...

Adina Kutnicki, Israel http://adinakutnicki.com/about/
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Oh, please, let me be the first to use it: Obama, you are a sleazy brown-bagger with a brain the size of a Brazil Nut.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Funny thing your case of using "Brazil Nut" as an example. In the south, many refer to these particular nuts as "n****r toes."
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Ditto that bobbcat. I guess I was a teen before I knew that they were called Brazil Nuts as well.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
I grew up in the South and remember as a child there were two water fountains in the town park. Since the one labeled "colored" was more my height, I always used it. I thought it meant the water had minerals like rust in it, always tasted OK to me.

The story above tells you I'm old and remember when things were segregated...I have never heard that brown bags were used to "grade" skin color. Never heard of this, never would have thought of this, don't believe it now. People are just making up new ways to be offended and offensive.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Like the others, I also grew up in the south (Louisiana) and while it was certainly segregated, and there was a whole lexicon that was used when describing a black person and things related to black people, I never once heard of the supposed "brown bag" thing - I think that it's bogus.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
I always carried a brown bag to school. I never knew I was being racist, i just thought I'd be hungry by noon.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes...the worst part of these bizarre decrees is the pseudo-history cited by know-nothing products of public education.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes, you're right. Never heard of the brown-bag thing. Some esoteric reference.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
It would be nice if someone could cite some source or reference for this "fact". And no, drug hallucinations and mental problems don't count as sources.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
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