Ashley Pierce is a political science freshman and Mustang Daily conservative columnist.

All hell broke loose last Tuesday. Adam Levine, a.k.a. the only famous member of Maroon 5, was caught muttering the words “I hate this country” on television’s “The Voice.”

The madness!

The audience of the show took to Twitter to voice its distaste for his words and Levine was forced to explain himself later through the social platform.

Levine claimed his comments were out of frustration when two of his teammates were voted off of the show by viewers as “The Voice’s” version of Ryan Seacrest said “America’s got two more saves and unfortunately two go home.”

Upset with how America voted, Levine voiced his anger in perhaps the wrong words — but that’s nothing to attack him for. I would take his statement as less of an anti-country statement and simply as one that displays disappointment with society. Or more so, he just really hated that “America” voted off his teammates.

I only defend Levine because society today becomes offended at the drop of a hat. One can hardly speak at all today without offending somebody in the room. Political correctness has gone to ridiculous depths to control what can and can’t be said anymore.

Mustang Daily, in fact, recently published an article about a white trash-themed party at a local bar that was drawing controversy. Personally, I just don’t see anything wrong with it. I see it as an attempt to have something different and original. It’s just for fun, not in an attempt to display hatred for those who might fulfill such a stereotype. What if it was a Honey Boo Boo-themed party? Arguably, that would require the same type of dress attire. Would that be OK since it is more focused on one person and not a stereotype?

I’m not denying that such things can be interpreted as mean-spirited. I wouldn’t be happy about a conservative-nut-jobs themed party; much less would I be pleased to hear about a liberal-hippie-themed party. Society has got to stop jumping, though, at any and every chance to find offense.

Not only has politically correct language made it impossible to speak in public without fear of upsetting someone in the crowd, it also has been used greatly by leftists as a tool against the conservative right.

The Associated Press, whose “AP Stylebook” basically dictates how journalists write and what titles are acceptable, “no longer sanctions” use of the term “illegal immigrant” or “illegal” applying to a person ever.

The journalist, Jose Antonio Vargas, who pushed for the change said the term “illegal” was dehumanizing.

OK, sure. I can see that. Except that is what they are. They’re immigrants who have come here illegally.

So often the immigration debate is twisted to have the public believe Republicans are evil white supremacists who don’t want other ethnicities here. No, for heaven’s sake, bring all the ethnicities. Immigrants rock. New citizens stimulate the economy; they bring new skills and a different worldview than Americans have.

Illegal immigrants, I mean, immigrants who didn’t come here legally, are screwing over the people who wait their turn and come into the country correctly. If that process takes too long, then it needs to be reviewed. But the answer isn’t to come in illegally while everyone else has to wait. That’s unjust.

The AP can say it’s shunning the phrase to end dehumanizing language, but I think it has way more of a political agenda than that. It’s making the statement that Republicans don’t view this group of people as, well, people, and more so they’re creating euphemisms to better the left’s arguments.

Whenever abortion or free birth control is discussed, the terms “reproductive health” and “women’s rights” are used instead. Nobody talks about the aborted child or the fact that birth control has never been a woman’s right. Calmer and nicer words are used to gain a better reception among voters.

Curbing and dictating what words can or cannot be said also just disguises true hatred in the world and changes history. For example, the censorship of the classic novel “Huckleberry Finn” took out a derogatory word and instead replaced it with “slave.”

I personally think use of that word is disrespectful and just shouldn’t be used at all. But deleting it from history can only cause such hateful acts and words to return in the future.

“Those who cannot remember the past, are condemned to repeat it,” right? So let’s remember it. We need to stop censoring the past and stop “no longer sanctioning” words and phrases. Political correctness is doomed to create a world full of offended and wounded people.

Human beings are imperfect, we will always hurt and offend; there’s no reason to dictate which specific words people should find offense in. People can decide for themselves.

Join the Conversation


  1. I have some advice. Try to champion ideas; don’t bash the other side simply because they’re the other side.

    In the first few paragraphs, I was thinking, “Hey, I actually agree with Ashley Pierce on something.” Right, Adam Levine probably shouldn’t be in so much hot water.

    And then you lost me. “[P]olitically correct language … has been used greatly by leftists as a tool against the conservative right.” You took a reasonable discussion about the exaggerated and useless outrage that a lot of people find silly (regardless of political ideology) and put blame on a big portion of your audience. Now, rather than continuing to look for any common ground between us, I’m trying to poke holes in your argument to defend myself.

    I’ve never had a problem with the term “illegal immigrants.” Work to enforce that belief rather than framing it as Republicans versus Democrats.

    For a divisive issue like abortion, think critically about why others might have the stance that they do (even if you disagree with it). I think women should be able to get abortions in a number of situations, but I’ve never used “reproductive health” or “women’s rights” in lieu of “abortion.” But why might some pro-choice people do that? Probably because they see the situation as more complex than just aborting a fetus: they want to acknowledge that other things—like others’ lives and a mother’s health—play into the decision.

    If, right off the bat, you draw a line and say, “You’re either with me or against me,” tons of people will block out whatever follows. If, on the other hand, you promote an interesting topic (not just conservatism for its own sake) by thoroughly explaining it and laying out truthful pros and cons, readers would get a lot more out of the column.

  2. Great article, Ashley. Just got out of the meeting and read it. Mr. or Mrs. Leftist (whichever seems more politically correct), first off, the purpose of such a terrific argument is so that it can be poked at from an adversarial defense. Duh. Second, have you not seen the horrific images or read the recent articles on doctors who have pulled out fetal parts from a woman? Do you think that’s a “reproductively healthy” choice for women? You say that you don’t use those specific euphemisms, but I can assure you that the principals or motives behind using them represents the exact point that Ms. Pierce makes-that politically correct titles are used to convey agreement among the public and for the media and cast out the opposing (and perhaps more just) view. Lastly, you mention that one should not try to be so partisan or quick to draw the lines between two sides on a hot issue. But then again, how strong is a person, if they do not defend their beliefs in wholeness and with strong, undivided conviction?

    1. Have you not seen the horrific images or read the recent articles on mass shootings? Do you think guns are a good choice for society?

      Same logic, right? Let’s not sensationalize an issue using uncommon situations.

      And my point wasn’t about abortion. My point was that, to get people on your side, it can be worthwhile to acknowledge their beliefs even if you don’t agree with them. I don’t have the same opinion on abortion as pro-life people, but I can, at least somewhat, see where they’re coming from. No one gains anything if you simply wave opponents off as being wrong.

      “[P]olitically correct titles are used to convey agreement among the public and for the media and cast out the opposing (and perhaps more just) view.” That would have been a superb thesis for this piece, but that’s not the point Ashley made. At first she seemed to be going that way, but then she brought up a pre-chosen conclusion (the left, solely, uses politically-correct language to oppress the right) and gave a few cherry-picked examples to support that.

      Liberals would have gotten something out of this if it were presented somewhat neutrally. By including more evidence that is (seemingly) non-biased, readers would be left to draw their own conclusions. Interestingly, you can make people agree with something they wouldn’t normally agree with if they think they reached the conclusion on their own.

      I guess you can say the partisanship is a defense of beliefs, but it’s totally useless from a journalism perspective: no new information is presented, no minds are changed, and no worthwhile discussions are spurred. See here: if I turn on Fox News, I know that I’ll disagree with almost everything they say. MSNBC is the same thing: I’m usually on their side, but I know it’s stupid to think conservatives would ever care about what they have to say. As it stands, liberals will always just read Ashley’s column with frustration and disgust, and conservatives will appreciate being patted on the back. Status quo.

      I’m not making political arguments; these are real suggestions. If these articles more subtly explored the issues we face today with a less forceful—not to be confused with “submissive”—attitude, I’d actually enjoy reading them and maybe even find myself swayed to her viewpoint.

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