I recently complained about this on someone else's blog, so I might as well bring it here and vent at a more appropriate place.
In a baseball-related discussion, someone wrote that my partner's blog "often has a hair trigger on political correctness matters".
I hate this. Hate it!
For centuries whole segments of the population were disparaged and referred to in less than human terms. Now some of us insist this is wrong. We ask that we all refer to people as people, the way we ourselves wish to be spoken of.
This supposed "hair trigger on political correctness matters" means commenters on that blog don't ignore racism, sexism, homophobia or xenophobia. We see it, we call it.
In another irritatingly wrong usage, people who fancy themselves speakers of unvarnished, unpopular truths will say, "It may be politically incorrect to say so, but...". As if being so-called politically correct demands we not speak plainly, that we coddle difficult facts in euphemism.
First of all, words like woman, African-American and Muslim are not euphemisms. When one of my relatives calls a 50-year-old woman an "office girl", and I ask that she use the term "assistant", I am not being euphemistic. The person is a woman, and an assistant.
And on the other hand, where do we really see the use of euphemisms? Who is repackaging torture as "aggressive interrogation methods"? How did genocide become "ethnic cleansing"? Where did abortion rights become "pro-life"? It's our side that demands the plain truth.
We should crumble up that meaningless phrase "politically correct" and throw it in the trash heap of reactionary hoaxes. It can land right on top of "liberal media" and "feminazi".
There's no agenda. There is no "political correctness". There is just common decency.