Political Correctness Defined (pt. 1) – A Nominalist’s Cookbook

You may also like...

5 Responses

  1. Matthew says:

    Great work Branko, I enjoyed listening to this.

  2. Kirill says:

    Listening to that story about Dawkins promoting the eating of “human road kills” i remembered the following lines from the book “The righteous mind” by J. Haidt (the story “about the guy and the chicken” refers to a guy fucking a chicken before cooking and eating it):

    I got my Ph.D. at McDonald’s. Part of it, anyway, given the hours I spent standing outside of a McDonald’s restaurant in West Philadelphia trying to recruit working-class adults to talk with me for my dissertation research. When someone agreed, we’d sit down together at the restaurant’s outdoor seating area, and I’d ask them what they thought about the family that ate its dog, the woman who used her flag as a rag, and all the rest. I got some odd looks as the interviews progressed, and also plenty of laughter—particularly when I told people about the guy and the chicken. I was expecting that, because I had written the stories to surprise and even shock people.
    But what I didn’t expect was that these working-class subjects would sometimes find my request for justifications so perplexing. Each time someone said that the people in a story had done something wrong, I asked, “Can you tell me why that was wrong?” When I had interviewed college students on the Penn campus a month earlier, this question brought forth their moral justifications quite smoothly. But a few blocks west, this same question often led to long pauses and disbelieving stares. Those pauses and stares seemed to say, You mean you don’t know why it’s wrong to do that to a chicken? I have to explain this to you? What planet are you from?
    These subjects were right to wonder about me because I really was weird. I came from a strange and different moral world—the University of Pennsylvania. Penn students were the most unusual of all twelve groups in my study. They were unique in their unwavering devotion to the “harm principle,” which John Stuart Mill had put forth in 1859: “The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others.” As one Penn student said: “It’s his chicken, he’s eating it, nobody is getting hurt.”
    The Penn students were just as likely as people in the other eleven groups to say that it would bother them to witness the taboo violations, but they were the only group that frequently ignored their own feelings of disgust and said that an action that bothered them was nonetheless morally permissible. And they were the only group in which a majority (73 percent) were able to tolerate the chicken story. As one Penn student said, “It’s perverted, but if it’s done in private, it’s his right.”

    Sorry for this rather lengthy quote, but I didn’t want to cut it because it’s quite telling.

  3. Malić says:

    To be completely honest to Dawkins, he wasn’t promoting it, just making a “logical” remark. You bring out really fine illustration to the point, not overlong in the least.

  4. Chet Gut says:

    Excellent breakdown, all three parts, thank you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *