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When PC goes into mad excess

A letter to the New York Times on 31 July from an administrator in the city’s Education Department denounces a reading-skills exam that used an extract from Edith Wharton’s Age of Innocence; the passage in question begins, ‘It was generally agreed in New York that the Countess Olenska had “lost her looks”’; the complaint is that ‘any girl taking the exam’ will experience the mention of losing your looks as a ‘psychic punch’ that impairs concentration on the rest of the exam.
The reality is of course male or female one with age does lose one's looks.

There are many similar tales for instance note of the recent protests that forced the ‘disinviting’ of commencement speakers at Brown, Johns Hopkins, Williams and Haverford, the censorious monitoring at Brandeis University of a teacher who said that Mexican labourers were once called ‘wetbacks’, and many similar incidents.

When you think PC think Puritan revolution The heroic picture of the individual heretic standing against the church, the dissenter against the state, the artist against the mass culture, has been fading for a while and we have not yet found anything to put in its place except to silence the dissenters with PC.


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