Political Correctness or Ego Inflation?

Late last fall I happened to be driving in Bellingham and listening to a local radio station. The announcer was giving the results of the state high school football playoffs. I paid attention because our grand daughter goes to one of the local high schools.
The sports guy reported that the Lummi “Blackhawks” had been defeated by their arch rival, the Neah Bay “Red Devils”. Whoa! I knew that these schools were tribal or Indian schools…. or, if you must, Native American schools. One has to assume that the students themselves chose these mascot names for their sports teams, or, at the very least were not troubled by them.
About this time the press and some professional sports blabbers were dissecting Dan Snyder, the billionaire owner of the Washington Redskins football team, over the name “Redskins”. The team has had that name since 1932 when the team was founded as the “Boston Redskins”.
At the time I wondered why they were picking on the Redskins. After all, there are thousands of sports teams, both college and professional, that have Indian related names. Just to name a few: Cleveland Indians, Atlanta Braves, Kansas City Chiefs, Chicago Blackhawks, Golden State Warriors, and Florida State Seminoles.
These names presumably were selected because they suggested the fighting spirit and determination of the Indians, not as an ethnic slur. Anyone who has watched baseball over the years must have seen tens of thousands of Atlanta fans all chanting and doing the tomahawk chop to urge their Braves on to victory. That is hardly a sign of disrespect.
If you’ve ever watched college football you surely have seen the Florida State mascot (Osceola) dressed in full Indian garb charging down the field astride Renegade, a magnificent Appaloosa, and planting his feathered lance in the middle of the field. More than a decade ago the NCAA went on the warpath against Indian mascots for college teams. Some were forced to change by PC faculty and school administrations. Florida State was able to resist partly because the Seminole tribe had no problem with the mascot.
That fact and, as the example of the mascot names for the two Bellingham tribal schools suggests, most Indians have no problem with these names. The natives that do complain are not really offended. They just want to see if they can push somebody’s buttons and they are aided and abetted by the politically correctness industry.
Remember the centuries long effort to correctly address American slaves and their descendants. In the early days they were referred to as “colored” because it was considered offensive to call them “negroes”. Then
It was determined it was fine to call them “negroes”. In the activism of the early ’60 the left decided that the proper term now was “Black”. OK, fine. But, just when everyone got accustomed to the “Black” term, the PC crowd led by grievance whores Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton announced, “Nope, now we’ve decided they must be referred to as “African Americans.” Some Blacks do not like this term as their families immigrated not from Africa but from the Caribbean or Europe.
How many generations removed from the homeland constitutes the statute of limitations on claiming a place as your ethnic appellation? And, what percentage of your genetic make-up must you have to be considered “African American”?
In the case of President Obama who claims African heritage, he is clearly 50% white from his mother but his father is largely Arab, supposedly with an African Black in his past. Some put Obama’s actual percentage of African blood at 6% and his Arab blood at 44%. Whatever the true percentage, the least part of him is African Black. No matter. He claimed to be African American and they claimed him, voting about 95 percent for ‘one of their own’.
A lot of this obsession with this stuff is a result of people with too much time on their hands. My Parisian friend would characterize it with a phrase that translates roughly as attempting to fornicate with flies. I think it stems from a burning desire to feel morally superior to others. In other words, just inflating your ego but believing you are protecting the feelings of others.
Very noble indeed.

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