With All Due Respect
Often in public discourse you will hear someone, more often than not a politician, say, “With all due respect” as a preface to statements that are often disrespectful.
What is your first thought when you hear “With all due respect”?
Mine is the subject of their comments is about to be disrespected. More specifically, my thoughts go back to Saturday Night Live in the late 1970’s, when it was still funny in my opinion. Dan Aykroyd and Jane Curtin did a Point/Counter Point segment during Weekend Update. Dan would often begin his reply to Jane with, “Jane, you ignorant slut” and Jane would often begin her response to Dan with, “Dan, you pompous ass.” I think this parody accurately reflects the meaning of this phrase more often than not in today’s contentious political climate. This was really pushing the envelope on TV back then.
Pay attention. You are likely to hear this phrase used often during the upcoming election year. Each one of us has to judge the intent of the speaker for ourselves.
Why So Serious?
Try this as you watch the presidential debates. You are watching the debates aren’t you? Substitute one of the phrases above when you hear “with all due respect.” It might just bring a smile to your face and make the experience more enjoyable. Political correctness has the effect of removing a sense of humor from too many discussions. I am not making light of serious issues that need to be discussed but if we can’t laugh at ourselves from time to time we are taking ourselves much too seriously.
Political Correctness has to go
I am proud to live in a country where we still can express our thoughts freely. However, too often political correctness is allowed to silence discussion of different opinions. If you don’t want to take my word for that, see what a liberal has to say about it in, The Silencing, by Kirsten Powers where she says,
“The illiberal left knows that delegitimization works. It’s their strongest weapon in a country with unparalleled free speech protections. If you can’t suppress views you don’t like with repressive laws, then delegitimize the people expressing them…delegitimization through demonizing and intimidation remains the illiberal left’s most effective tactic.”
If we disagree, let’s discuss it. Often the best idea is only discovered when opposing ideas are discussed. Let’s not let political correctness kill our First Amendment right of freedom of expression and any chance we have to arrive at that best decision.
Dr. Ben Carson also recognizes this issue and addressed it well in his closing remarks from the Republican presidential debate on 11/10/2015 when he said,
“There is something special about this nation and we must embrace it and be proud of it and never give it way for the sake of political correctness.”
To borrow from Jane Curtin’s Weekend Update closing remarks,
“Good night and have a pleasant tomorrow.”
Until next time…
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