Oct 052009
 
Authors: By Monica Farid Daily Californian UCBerkeley

(U-WIRE) Fairy tales are the stuff of dreams. They are beautiful, pure, innocent and idealistic tales full of profound morals (like wash your apples before you eat them).

However, many of us may not realize that fairy tales contain a disturbing amount of dangerous messages. In fact, it’s rare to find a single fairy tale that does not espouse radical extremist thought. For this reason I have decided to create a nice and inoffensive fairy tale for your pleasure: “Snow Caucasian.”

Snow Caucasian was a womyn who had an evil stepfather who was jealous of her weight-lifting abilities and tried to kill her. She escaped and found seven kind but vertically-challenged men who taught her to clean, cook and wash dishes. One day, her evil stepfather consulted an ethnically ambiguous gypsy and disguised himself as a “very mature” womyn. He approached Snow and tried to convince her to eat a poisoned apple. She fell into conversation with this womyn and, being a cerebrally gifted person, came to realize that this was in fact her evil stepfather.

The conversation proved to be enlightening because Snow also discovered that her step-father’s niceness-deprived behavior toward her was actually a symptom of a middle-age crisis. She offered her support and as she reflected upon his condition, Snow accidentally bit the apple. All at once, she became motionally-challenged. In horror, the seven vertically-challenged men called for the prince (who was a certified nurse) and soon Snow was well enough to kiss the prince and live politically correct ever after.

According to Answers.com the definition of politically correct is “of, relating to, or supporting broad social, political and educational change, especially to redress historical injustices in matters such as race, class, gender and sexual orientation. This often involves changing or avoiding language that might offend anyone, especially with respect to gender, race or ethnic background.”

Although I happen to be vertically-challenged, something about the whole notion of political correctness doesn’t sit well with me. But the problem with criticizing political correctness is that you can very quickly be seen as niceness-deprived and culturally insensitive. Many people assume that if you’re arguing against inoffensiveness, then you must be arguing for offensiveness. But the truth is this, while you should try to be as compassionate and diplomatic as possible, you simply can’t please everyone. And acknowledging this fact does not necessarily entail that you’re on a mission to offend the masses.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against the basic principles behind political correctness. But the problem with this concept, as it stands, is that it defines all people as being either dumb or as ticking bombs (yes, as politically incorrect as that sounds).

Just as political correctness labels potential antagonizers as being hopelessly stupid, it views the victims as being ready to explode like a pressurized can of deodorant in a campfire. Do not try this. I have yet to spot a rainbow sheep. Luckily this ban was lifted after black parents complained that the policy was ridiculous.

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