Micole Khemarrica (khromat) wrote,
Micole Khemarrica

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Mini-Rant : PC and Loathing in L.A.

You know, it's one thing to educate an ignorant populace about word connotations that are prejudiced. Only a black person can say "nigger" and get away with it, for example. But it's a completely different thing to demand the revision of history for the sake of appeasing the politically sensitive. Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it, and revising history does not change it.

Removing all evidence of slavery and subjugation in the continental US is denying an important part of how we got here. It's not necessarily nice, it certainly isn't pretty, but wiping it clear from memory is more a disservice to those who lived and died in those times than any derogatory behavior today. And, while I approve the Jeffersonian ideal of keeping religion out of secular government, that doesn't mean every referential instance that even implies a religious link needs to be removed from government seals and such. That's denying that religion had any part in the history of our country, and that's just outright bull.

I grew up in the shadow of Los Angeles County and later had residence there, so even if I've not lived there in a decade I still keep an ear out for news. Here's two pieces that lead to my current frust:

The cross that changed a 53-year old government seal

Politically Charged Words of 2004

Now, the first is a case of that religious-secular split, where the ACLU threated a lawsuit against the Board of Supervisors because of a *tiny* cross in the seal -- never mind that the major figure in the seal was a greek goddess, or that a Masons symbol was also on the seal. At least when the Board folded to the pressure to ammend the seal, they did it right and looked at all aspects of it and changed more than just the cross.

The second is a case of Political Correctness gone overboard, with a purchasing department of the same Board of Supervisors banning a common term of a computer component in all documentation, just because they get the heebie-jeebies over the term Master/Slave (for the primary and secondary IDE items on a chain).

Folks, nobody is calling a Primary Drive a 'cracker' and it's dependant secondary drive a 'nigger'; they aren't being labeled to hurt their feelings. These are non-living, non-sentient, machine parts for stars' sake! And to think that calling a piece of silicon and metal a 'slave' is somehow striking out at the African-Americans' slave ancestors is ludicrous. The terms 'master' and 'slave' were not chosen randomly, but neither were they chosen to malign anyone. It describes the hierarchial relationship of a dominant (high priority) component and its dependant (lower priority) component. Period. End of story.

I have to wonder, though, when the ACLU is going to start hitting cities for their religiously-based names... you know, San Diego, L.A. ("The City of the Queen Of Angels" is a paraphrasing of the city's full name), St. Louis? Are Purgatory, CO and Hell, MI and all the other towns like them going to be required to change their names? While the obvious answer should be "no", for some people it's not as obvious... and that bothers me.

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