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October 29, 2006 - Who are the Politically Correct Experts?

“Politically correct” is a term that turns me off every time I read it or hear it and I am always curious to know who the experts are who use it as a reason to promote their own views. It is used when discussing politics, diet, physical fitness, ethnic humor, education, world history, environment and a host of other subjects. A few examples....

A school district recently outlawed playing tag in the school yard because experts said children could be injured. In Wisconsin, afternoon recess is being discontinued because the unstructured physical activity of recess should be replaced by organized supervised activity. My reaction...whatever happened to just letting a child’s imagination run free in recess activities. In the play area of the one-room 8-grade country school I attended, I fought many battles between cowboys and Indians (oops, native Americans) or between U.S. soldiers and World War II opponents that now shall go nameless. Is it necessary that everything a child does today have to be totally organized in Nike shoes and endless car pools?

The Chicago City Council passed a law that says restaurants in the city can no longer sell foie gras made from the liver of geese or ducks because that is inhumane and now wants to forbid the use of cooking oil containing trans fats. My reaction...since when was government at a local, state or national level given the right to determine what an individual eats? I see no reference to that anywhere in the Constitution and politically correct or not, I will eat what I want to eat.

Agricultural and the environment...I’ve talked about Iowa wanting to stop the use of manure on soybean fields and Wisconsin wanting to prohibit the spreading of manure on fields between December 1st and April 30th. My reaction...have these “experts” ever farmed and do they have scientific basis for imposing these rules? I get the feeling these are the same people who say big is bad and the small family farm must be preserved, then in the next breath write environmental laws that make if financially impossible for small farms to stay in business.

Then there is the matter of political correctness in race and religion. For example, the insistence by some Native American groups that Chief Illiniwek can no longer be the mascot at the University of Illinois and no athletic team at any level should use Indian or Indian references in their names because it is demeaning baffles me. My reaction... as a Scandinavian of Norwegian descent, I should be incensed by the Viking football team in Minnesota and the silly horn hats they wear; but I guess I’m not smart enough to realize that is an insult to my ethnic background.

There are many more examples I will save for another time. Meanwhile, you can totally disagree with everything I have said and call me a politically incorrect nut case. The Constitution guarantees you that right just as it guarantees me the right to think and say what I have just said.

My thoughts on Samuelson Sez.