Steven Pinker is a Canadian-American cognitive psychologist as well as a linguist, and popular science author. He is Johnstone Family Professor in the Department of Psychology at Harvard University.
He is also a Humanist—- which I am not—however, Pinker is an interesting study because when it comes to the subject of “political correctness”, he is very much on the mark with most of my Evangelical brothers and sisters and he feels free to speak on such subjects because he is also a defender of , “free speech”.
That means that he is willing to debate. If anything needs to happen among the educated and those in educating circles it is debate. It used to be the norm in higher education but misguided agendas seek to strip it all away.
He so rightly acknowledges,
“Political correctness started out with good aims and achieved much good in the early stages of the movement in its attempt at eliminating demeaning remarks and unacceptable discriminatory policies.”
And I agree with Pinker. I was very glad as young student in school in the 70’s and 80’s to see students of all races and then special needs and handicapped students recognized as the valuable human beings that they are in society. “Do not use labels and do not ostracize” was the idea.
But then, and I saw it happen, over time, the political correct ideology began to get weird. We all did didn’t we?
But Pinker sees it too and goes on in his talk to expose the current over reaching agenda of “Political Correctness”, stating …
“Often movements reach their decadent phase, where having achieved the majority of their goals they don’t go out of business but they need to find increasingly obscure grievances and causes to maintain their moral franchise and I suspect that’s what happened to what we now call political correctness, many aspects of which which in their original and moderate form were completely reasonable. “
This is where we find ourselves now. Where the “Politically Correct movement needs to find ” increasingly obscure grievances and causes to maintain their moral franchise”.
Where ever increasing obscure and “micro” aspects of thought, conversation and values are “politically incorrect” and are” labeled” causing harm.
Has “Political Correctness” itself become a bully? I think so.
There are so many areas where I and many of you, my Christian brothers and sisters would disagree with Pinker…. but to His credit and to those like Him, I do pray that voices like his continue to press back against the tide of ridiculous and unintelligent unfounded movements that seek to treat the free marketplace of ideas in such a “Politically in-correct way”.
Remember the Apostle Paul in the Agora (marketplace) of Corinth?
Men of that day in that place were allowed to speak and think in openness and frankness.
May that continue.