“So you like Trump ’cause he’s honest, and you respect that… But he’s honest about being racist. That’s like saying you like rapists ’cause they’re real go-getters, and you respect tenacity.” ~ Keon Polee
There are a whole bunch of people around right now who are very against the concept of “Political Correctness.” These people count it as a great injustice when someone loses a job or is publicly shamed just because they may have expressed views that are offensive or repulsive to huge swaths of humanity. Likewise, they revel in the times when people say things that seem sexually or racially insensitive, while celebrating as Heroes of Free Speech those brave few who are willing to “tell it like it is.”
One of those “heroes” spoke up this week… The controversial Governor of Maine, Paul LePage, expressed some of his ideas about the folks who are trafficking heroin into Maine and are responsible for the state’s heroin epidemic. Here is the video of his remarks:
Just in case you don’t watch, here is the absolutely unbelievable quote:
“These are guys with the name “D-Money,” “Smoothie,” “Shifty” – these types of guys. They come from Connecticut and New York, they come up here to sell their heroin, they go back home. Incidentally, half the time they impregnate a young, white girl before they leave… which is a real sad thing, because then we have another issue we have to deal with down the road.” ~ Paul LePage, Governor of Maine
If you DIDN’T watch the video, chances are you just read that quote and thought, “Nah… That can’t be right,” and you just went back and clicked on the video to see if he actually said that. I did the same thing. In the comments section of the post in which I read about this story, a person wrote that he liked Governor LePage because he “tells it like it is.” But the more I think about the phrase “tells it like it is,” really it starts to sound like a whole different way of obscuring language with Political Correctness. If you think about it, in cases like this, saying someone is just “telling it like it is” has become PC code for “I agree with the racist thing this person has just said.”
And this anti-political-correctness movement has its tentacles in EVERYTHING right now. It affects conversations about what’s happening in Oregon… It affects a perceived “War On Christmas” and results in people saying “Merry Christmas” like a middle finger… It affects how Christians speak about Muslims… It affects how people speak about refugees… I was writing about this stuff three years ago when I wrote about people letting go of using the word “Retarded.” It’s everywhere. People file all of their prejudices and bigotry under “Everyone Is Way Too Worried About Political Correctness These Days,” and that way it’s really easy to dismiss it when someone looks at them and says, “Hey. That’s not okay. You’re better than this… WE’RE better than this!”
Listen–You might have a very real concern and fear that all our white daughters are getting knocked up by black men. You might see this as just ONE MORE THING that deteriorates racial purity in this country… But if you decide to voice that concern (or, as in the case of Gov. LePage, it accidentally slips out), don’t blame “Political Correctness” for people calling you a racist. People are calling you a racist because you just said something that is from page one of the White Supremacists Manual that they keep beneath the Confederate Flag in the same drawer as the “Skinheading Clippers” in the church lobby of the monthly KKK meeting.
Incidentally, three days ago the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency arrested three people and charged them with distributing heroin in three different Maine counties. Below are the mug shots of “D-Money,” “Smoothie,” and “Shifty” Governor LePage was referring to…
I’m not completely sure which one is which, but I’m relatively sure that there is only one person in this line up who has any chance of “impregnating Maine’s young, white girls.” And that chance is… remote.
People who say offensive things about minorities and women and immigrants and LGBT folks and NOT some sort of champions of “Free Speech.” Yesterday, an officer who patrols in the area Tamir Rice lived in (before the 12 year old was gunned-down and killed by police officers for carrying a toy gun in a park… All before their squad car even stopped rolling) made this comment to Tamir’s grieving mother (after accusing her of “just want[ing] money”): “Raise your kids not to play with fake guns stupid bitch.” It’s just not okay. And the guy in the video below ended up losing his job because his un-PC statements were caught on tape. I won’t be captioning this one…
Guess what? You don’t get to say racist crap free of consequence. Stop trying to hide your hatred behind bogus claims of “people being way too politically correct.” I mean, sure–You have every right to say racist things… And we have every right to call you a racist. You have a right to spew a bunch of bigoted garbage… And we have a right to call you out on the grossness of your bigotry. We have a right to get it on video. And we have every right to tell the people who sign your paycheck. And we have every right to expect the people around us to treat each other with respect. And we have every right to demand that people in positions of leadership are held to a higher standard on this… Whether those people are officers, Church leaders, governors, congressmen, or political candidates.
And as a side note (on a side show), this is why Donald Trump is so concerning for the GOP… I’m aware that there is plenty of racism within both major political parties in America, but this issue has become a real problem for republicans. Trump may draw some large crowds right now, but embracing this “Anti-Political Correctness” movement is a huge mistake. You might still be able to win a lot of local elections by being the party of Anti-Gay, Anti-Immigrant, Anti-Refugee, Anti-Black Lives Matter, Anti-Muslim, Anti-Poor People, etc… But the country–as a whole (and the world as a whole)–is moving in a very different direction. It’s moving slowly, but it’s moving. Embracing that image with fear-mongering, politically incorrect candidates is a terrible decision. I suspect the leadership of the republican party is much more comfortable when their candidates keep their racism where it belongs… Off camera.
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