In the intolerance, I also saw hope. During one particularly memorable day, when radicals started shrieking when I questioned why our professor referred to an unborn child as a mere “clump of cells,” I remember speaking to a small group of students after class. They told me they were questioning some of their pro-choice views. “Why?” I asked. Because, they responded, if the leading pro-choice activists couldn’t debate the issue without shout-downs, then perhaps their positions weren’t as intellectually coherent as they led us to believe. Intolerance and intimidation do not breed affection and loyalty. Reasoned arguments and basic kindness have their own appeal, and often the barrier to greater influence lies more in the inability to speak (or to be heard) than in the perceived inadequacy of the ideas.
—David French, How Political Correctness Improved My Life
When I teach my students American History, the American experiments in and support of the program of eugenics is inevitably covered. I then link that to the pro-abortion movement. Here is a link: http://groups.csail.mit.edu/mac/users/rauch/abortion_eugenics/ that might prove helpful in debating liberals whose champions include women like Margaret Sanger.
How that vicious old Hitler-in-skirts Margaret Sanger was ever turned into a heroine of “liberation” is perhaps a testament to the incredible genius of the American PR writer’s art!
I will add another angle to political correctness, at least as it involves racial/ethnic divisions.
The fact is, we have a legacy of racism to live down–racism in the sense of oppression and contempt for fellow bearers of the Divine Image who happened to look different from us.
The money quote from Dalyrmple’s interview at Front Page, Our Culture, What’s Left of It:
Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, nor to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is to co-operate with evil, and in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.
Which is generally what is intended these days with the one size fits all blanket smear: “racistsexistbigothomophobeantisemiteradical”.
But you don’t catch any flak unless you are over the target.