You cannot make this up! If someone were to submit this story to Hollywood as a script for a movie they would be laughed out of town. Political correctness and being polite is one thing, but the following story goes way beyond that. In my opinion, it progresses or, more accurately, regresses, from PC to absurdity.
There is a fish, called the “Asian carp.” It was imported to the US from Asia in the 1970s, hence the name Asian carp to distinguish it from native carp. The intent was to utilize the fish to alleviate pollution in fish farms, which it did. The unintended consequence of this, however, is that these fish have escaped from the fish farms where they were intended to be contained, have reproduced prolifically and have thrived in the cold waters of the Upper Mississippi and Great Lakes. Not only that, apparently this fish is extremely invasive; it has been feeding on plankton to such an extent that the supply of plankton in the area has been severely diminished. Since plankton is very low in the food chain, its destruction has been very damaging to the entire ecosystem in the area. As a result, many consider the Asian Carp to be the greatest threat to the area’s ecosystem.
Consequently, the name “Asian carp” has developed a very negative connotation. Many in the Minnesota legislature viewed it as an insult to Asians and wanted it changed to a more PC name. The legislature actually introduced and passed a bill to change the name to “invasive carp.” (I would like to denote that the sponsors of the bill were Caucasian, not Asians.) The bill was signed into law by the governor. (That’s not a joke; it’s the real name. Inane, but true.)
You might wonder why, with all the serious issues in the world, the Minnesota state elected officials would find it necessary to waste time and effort on Asian carp. Well, you would not be alone. All I can say is that it is symptomatic of the nature of our government these days. PC running amok indeed. I ask you, why stop there. As long as we’re being absurd, why not empower a new Cabinet-level Department, called the “PC Police?” They could cull through the dictionary and eliminate all other similarly pseudo offensive words, phrases and colloquialisms? There are plenty of them. Consider a few examples:
1. The Asian flu, which makes people sick, could be viewed as an insult to Asians. Just call it the “flu.” Similarly, isn’t the term “yellow fever” insulting to Asians as well? Why not call it “acute tropical viral disease?”
2. German measles, which is primarily a childhood disease but could be serious when contracted as an adult, could be viewed as an insult to Germans. Just call it “mild measles,” or “thank God I didn’t get the real measles, measles.”
3. The terms “black death,” which connotes a plague, “black ice,” which is dangerous and causes car accidents, often fatal, “black mark,” and “black comedy” could be viewed as offensive to blacks. Why not rename them “plague,” “dangerous ice,” and “serious comedies?”
4. The term “left-handed compliment,” which is not a compliment at all, is certainly a slap in the face to left-handed people who comprise approximately 10% of the population. The obvious PC solution is to outlaw its use altogether.
5. One of the worst phrases is “Indian giver,” which connotes dishonesty. It seems to me to be a greater affront to native Americans than “redskins,” which has caused such indignation of late, especially among certain non-native Americans. The latest polls show that an overwhelming majority of Native Americans are not insulted by the term, “redskins.” In fact the Wellpinit (WA) Redskins are very proud of their school’s nick-name, and, oh yes, the student body of the school is 90% Native American.
6. And, while were at it, the PC police must change the name of Oklahoma as the name means “red people” in Choctaw. Talk about an insult. (“Where are you from? I’m from the ‘red people’ state.”)
CONCLUSION AND PREDICTION
The foregoing are but a few of the many examples one could site. Most sane people know that these names and labels are not meant to be derogatory. Obviously, I have used sarcasm to illustrate a point. Hasn’t our mania for PC gone a bit too far?
Furthermore, enough of this apologizing already. A lot of people are way too sensitive. It seems that every day some public figure is apologizing for some perceived insult. The latest is Gary Oldman, but there has been a long line of them, too many to mention. For once, I would like to extend kudos to that noted philosopher, Charles Barkley, who refused to apologize for his comments about people from San Antonio, basically saying “If you don’t like what I said, too bad. Don’t watch me on tv.”
Often the apology gets more attention that the perceived insult. Enough of this nonsense. Instead, let’s focus on more important issues, both domestic and foreign, that desperately need our attention and have a real effect on our lives.
What pseudo non-PC words or phrases can you come up with? I’d like to hear them. I could use a good laugh.