I’m not a big fan of White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel. Too often, I just simply disagree with his style points, or lack thereof.
And Texas Republican consultant Dave Carney? To my knowledge we’ve never been on the same side of anything, and will probably never.
Those two both find themselves on the same side of Professional Quitter Sarah Palin’s temper this week, however, because each was quoted using the term “retard,” which Palin finds offensive. It is understandable that Palin’s sensitivity on this issue is highly advanced, since Trig Palin, her youngest son, has Down Syndrome. She called for Emanuel’s resignation over the incident, and her spokesbot called Carney “disrespectful.”
I’m not a particularly political correct kind of guy myself. But as a certain Dallas radio commentator pointed out, here’s the definition of “politically correct:”
“avoiding offense based on race, gender, religion, ideology or any other social grouping such as disability”
And fair enough. Words have meaning. They’re powerful and important things. The words we choose have the power to hurt people or to comfort them. They can pay homage to society’s sensitivities, or inappropriately attempt to callus over them. They can highlight and honor our differences and diversities, or they can demean an entire race or gender or economic class into a forced obscurity and unimportance.
But if you thought I might join Sarah Palin in skewering these guys, you were wrong. Instead I’m going to say that Sarah Palin is the very worst kind of human being imaginable.
What does Sarah Palin herself think of political correctness? Well, I guess this direct quote is clear enough:
“Screw the political correctness.”
Also consider how she originally marketed her twitter account when she first started tweeting. She promised less politically correct tweets once she quit as Alaska’s Governor.
So, to review:
— the very purpose of political correctness is to avoid offending people
— Palin is against political correctness
— Palin is offended when people use the word “retard,” and doesn’t think the word should be used
— Palin has a child with Down Syndrome
Sarah Palin is right about that word. It is a word which hurts people. It’s too bad the only time Palin wants somebody to stop using hurtful words is when her own personal experiences dictate that she’s the one who feels hurt.
Apparently in Palin’s world, other people’s pain is not her concern. Other people’s honestly-held sensitivities aren’t valid, but her sensitivities are. Other people’s real life experiences are irrelevant, but hers are definitive and should be the standard.
Ms. Palin, I suggest that before you haul off and demand somebody’s resignation, and before you sit in judgment of some Republican consultant’s comment, you might consider spending a little time in serious consideration of yet another word: hypocrite. Because not only does that knife cut deeper than you thought, it also turns out to have two blades.