As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. – Colossians 3:12
There’s some strange logic afoot this year in the world of “presidential” politics. Sometimes I wonder if it’s really all as random and off-the-wall as it sounds – or instead maybe so carefully orchestrated that we’re conveniently missing the fact that it’s carefully orchestrated.
One prime example is this carefully played resistance to “political correctness.” We’ve all heard it: “I don’t let political correctness keep me from standing on my convictions!” has become a sort of rallying cry for those tilting at establishment windmills. However, in my estimation this is a fine example of misdirection, duplicity, and manipulation.
Here’s how it goes: The term political correctness was originally coined to apply to situations where truth is re-worded, sugar-coated, or even avoided altogether in order to pander to, or avoid offending some person or group with political clout. When politicians and other public figures employ political correctness in order to avoid dealing with difficult truth the practice is rightly criticized.
Over the years, however, the definition of political correctness has been cynically re-calibrated to justify speaking without common courtesy, good manners, and/or polite behavior. In this election, “I’m tired of political correctness” has become an excuse for offensive remarks, name-calling, bad manners, character assassination, bullying, and what used to be categorized as “oafish” behavior.
I’m sorry, but allowing our discourse to be governed by principles of common courtesy is not the same as political correctness; civility isn’t politically correct, it’s simply “correct;” it’s the right thing to do.
civility isn’t politically correct, it’s simply “correct;” it’s the right thing to do.
- There is a difference between “unvarnished truth” and boorishness.
- “Telling it like it is,” should not be confused with vulgarity.
- “Shooting from the hip” does not excuse graceless incivility.
- “I’m just being honest” can be achieved without resorting to churlish or loutish invective. I could go on….
I taught a class once where we enjoyed a discussion about truth, honesty, and authenticity. “I’m not sure anyone really wants to hear the truth,” one woman said. “What if the truth about someone was, ‘hey, you’re ugly!’ Would you still want me to be honest?”
But she had missed the point. Real honesty would allow us to see people as God sees them, and the truth is that each person is beautiful in the sight of God.
There is no excuse for meanness, disrespect, and bad manners; not even – especially not – the lie of, “but I’m speaking the truth.” Think about it.
– In love, and because of love, DEREK
“Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” – Philippians 4:8