“That game is soooo gay!”
“He is probably gay anyway!”
Without thinking, I gave my sour PC disapproving look to both of the comments which led to a discussion of whether I was prejudiced. Am I? When I tread lightly around word usage?
Earlier in the day, when I was researching game shows for a project at work, I came across a YouTube clip of Wheel of Fortune on South Park. Out of interest, I watched the related CNN clip about people’s responses to the episode’s usage of niggers.
So it’s true that in America at least, we get wrapped up in PC terminology. I have trained myself never to use waiter or waitress…instead to use the gender-less word server regardless of the context. I still try to get myself to say mail carrier than mailman. And I have a certain reluctance to say her or him when I fudge it by saying it them.
I don’t want to offend anybody but it complicates communication. And really for what?
At dinner, I was accused of being prejudiced not being able to use certain words in all context even though there was no implication. So why is it that we can use the words if it’s a word that we use to describe ourselves…but other people can’t?
A few years ago…when I first got to Pittsburgh, someone asked me if I was Oriental. I had quickly corrected him on the spot, feeling like he was uneducated. He was unaffected. At the native american reservation last week, my sister’s patients—all poor uneducated native americans—often asked if she was Oriental. She said yes, but didn’t correct them—knowing that they don’t know anybody. Ultimately too, does it matter?
When I was younger, I used the word hate a lot. But then I stopped because people I was making a strong statement although I meant that I preferred not to do something. So I have almost halted all usage…treading the lines of It’s interesting or I don’t think it appeals to me implying doubt and partiality. In America at least, we prefer to exude a facade of agreement and fairness when inside, we think something else entirely.