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Mr Tewary, Prof Roy and Political Correctness



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Fate has willed that my very first contribution to IPI
debate
ought to be tangential to the subject of policy
reform. :)

I'm afraid Mr Tewary has got it all wrong. He's
standing the
concept of "political correctness" on its head. I
guess 
Prof Roy's explanation and example, while being
accuarte, have
not brought out the naunces of PC very well; therefore
I'd
like to try my hand at clearing the clouds and ending
this
thread on a happy note.

"Political correctness" is (often superficial)
adherence to 
unwritten rules comformace to which, (it is made out
that) 
there exists a more-than-broad consensus. The person
vilaoting
the rule will face a penalty - typically, opprobrium
from the 
peer group. Though political correctness manifests
mostly in the
jargon used by those who strive to be politically
correct, it
is not confined to the written or the spoken word.
There are
fruitcakes who go to spectacular lengths to be
amazingly PC:
some American schools actually banned Mark Twain's
Huckleberry 
Finn from their curriculums because it contained the
word 
"nigger"! One public official was forced to demit
office because
he used the word "niggardly" in his speech!

PC in India may not have yet scaled the peaks that it
has in the
US, but it's surely getting there, inch by inch.  For
instance, 
you're politically correct if you are in favor of the
Women's 
Reservation Bill. You maybe genuinely convinced of the
need for
such a piece of legislation, but that's beside point.
The point
is that if you aren't a defendant of WRB, you're in
serious trouble. 
Why? Apparently, everybody and cousin is not only
agreed on the 
"fact" that WRB is greatest invention since sliced
bread; but they
are also agreed on the "fact" that opponents of the
bill are 
MCP's.

Likewise, it's presumed that many conflicts in
contemporary India
have fascist origins, especially if they involve
Hindus and
non-Hindus. For all we know, the sparring parties
might be 
quarelling about a disputed piece of secular property.
Nevertheless,
if the attacker is Hindu and the victim is a
non-Hindu, it is
generally believed that the perpetrator of the crime
was inspired
by none other than a dead Italian gent named
Mussolini.

The use of the word "fascist" to describe what
possibly is a 
sectarian crime  is not anti-PC; discerning PC
enthusiasts
will tell you that such use is in excellent taste and
meets all
established canons of PC-ness. On the contrary,
questioning its 
use, as Prof Roy had done, militates against the
fundamental 
tenets of PC.

Which is why I believe Mr Tewary has got it all upside
down. 
Prof Roy is at the receiving end of the PC equation.
On top of
that, he's accused of acting PC!! Not for worlds would
like to
be in a similar situation.

Sikhivahan 


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