PC WATCH -- MIRROR ARCHIVE
Chronicling Politically Correct oppression..
The Blogspot version of "PC Watch" is HERE and "Dissecting Leftism" is HERE. The Blogroll; John Ray's Home Page; Email John Ray here. Other sites viewable in China: Greenie Watch, Dissecting Leftism and Recipes. (Click "Refresh" on your browser if background colour is missing)
31 July, 2003
New York City is opening a a full-fledged high school for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students because they get "harassed" in regular schools. So how about a school for whites only? They get harassed in lots of U.S. schools too. Or would that be Apartheid?
30 July, 2003
SO WHO WANTS RESPECT FOR THE POLICE ANYWAY?
"Eighty-five gay and lesbian police officers marched into history yesterday. They led a merry band of dancers in hotpants, men in drag and a rollerskating nun through the streets of London for the 31st annual Gay Pride parade. For the first time, officers taking part were allowed to march in uniform, and they were led by Britain's highest-ranking openly gay police officer, Commander Brian Paddick."
29 July, 2003
ANTISEMITISM NOW CORRECT
"Anti-Semitism is no longer the exclusive preserve of the Ku Klux Klan, the uneducated, the outcasts, and sheeted bigots of the night. The bigotries at home are nurtured now on the left, by domestic radicals allied with the usual suspects abroad. This is not easy for some of us to get used to.
Phyllis Chesler, a left-wing feminist, was a reluctant candidate to become a ''professional Jew,'' as she puts it in ''The New Anti-Semitism: The Current Crisis and What We Must Do About it.'' The role was thrust upon her by men and women she thought were her intellectual, emotional, and social comrades in arms against injustice, but who took an irrational detour into vicious mendacity, spouting demented politically correct propaganda against Jews and Americans everywhere."
28 July, 2003
The excerpt below is from an article by Kate Legge which appeared in The Weekend Australian of July 26th., 2003, p. I19 but which does not appear to be online.
VERBAL CLEANSING FAILS
MY girlfriend was cross at a sixtysomething male colleague with whom she was collaborating on a research project. "He's an old woman," she sniped.
As she dropped this clanger, we both reacted with a shriek that was part word police, alert for politically incorrect pejoratives; part self-preservation, given we are dangerously close to qualifying for membership of this majority; and part amazement at how it miscast the old women we know and love as fusspots.
Bitchy is an androgynous adjective. Once restricted to gossiping women, it is applied to men, often in gay circles, when the talk turns personal and critical of clothing, haircuts and taste in shoes. Bastard remains sex-specific. You don't commonly hear women called that.
Ageist words present the next frontier of verbal cleansing. When I started in journalism it was the inaugural Year of the Disabled and cadets were dispatched to interview groundbreaking achievers.
It was 1981. The term disabled had replaced blunt hooters like crippled or spastic and our linguistic smelting continued. Words were beaten and moulded on the social forge around notions of challenge and opportunity rather than hindrance and disadvantage.
Like the media's discovery of feminism with its reporting of the first female astronaut, chief executive, MP, magistrate and so on, there were endless stories of the first rock climber in a wheelchair and other conquerers overturning discriminatory laws. Inevitably, tokenism reared its head and there were times on this journey when we lurched from the sublimely inspiring to the sheer ridiculous.
27 July, 2003
SUMMER IS INCORRECT TOO
Every year, the first rays of sun come chaperoned with a host of warnings about the dangers that we face from the sun, the summer, the holidays, life at home or life in general. Most of these warnings are unnecessary; all of them are irritating. What is it about the holiday season that so attracts scaremongers and killjoys?
After skin cancer, there is the general risk of heat. In Kansas, USA, the 'SAFE KIDS coalition' has issued warnings about the dangers of leaving children unattended in cars 'even for a few minutes', and 'even with the windows down', after a 22-month-old Kansas girl who was left in an SUV for eight hours in the full sun tragically died In Britain, campaigners are generally more vocal on the issue of pets in hot places
Even in a globally warmed summer, people go on holiday - and this provides no end of opportunities for panics and advice. The journey itself, we are told, provides numerous hazards - aeroplanes carry the risk of deep-vein thrombosis, terrorists or other passengers with air rage. If you are backpacking, prepare to be warned about the dangers of everything from hitch-hiking (not that anybody does that any more) to mugging; if you're a young person just out for a fun holiday with friends, a whole string of calamities can befall you, from drinking, drug-taking, dehydrating, drowning, and generally dying as a result of irresponsible (aka carefree) behaviour.
The holiday romance has been relabelled sexual harassment and diagnosed as a cause of sexual disease, so you don't want to be getting too close to anybody else. But be careful, too, about those activities you can do on your own - from water sports to biking to swimming to sightseeing, everything from sharks to crashes to pickpockets could ruin your day.
This is by no means an exhaustive list - but it clearly shows that there's no such thing as a risk-free summer. At home and abroad, outdoors and indoors, the pleasure police and panic-merchants can turn the most banal aspects of everyday life and leisure time into a cause for alarm.
From the point of view of the safe summer killjoys, the real problem with summer is that the risk managers have no place in it.
26 July, 2003
MULTICULTURALISM AS RELIGION
Paul Gottfried in his book "Multiculturalism and The Politics of Guilt" argues that the collapse of much of mainstream Christianity in the West is providing fertile ground for a new ersatz religion based on 'multiculturalism' with it's own secular theocracy.
"Gottfried argues that the West's relentless celebrations of diversity have resulted in the downgrading of the once dominant Western culture. The moral rationale of government has become the consciousness-raising of a presumed majority population..... For the new political elite, nationalization and income redistributions have become less significant than controlling the speech and thought of democratic citizens. An escalating hostility toward the bourgeois Christian past, explicit or at least implicit in the policies undertaken by the West and urged by the media, is characteristic of what Gottfried labels an emerging "therapeutic" state.
For Gottfried, acceptance of an intrusive political correctness has transformed the religious consciousness of Western, particularly Protestant, society. The casting of "true" Christianity as a religion of sensitivity only toward victims has created a precondition for extensive social engineering. Gottfried examines late-twentieth-century liberal Christianity as the promoter of the politics of guilt. Metaphysical guilt has been transformed into self-abasement in relation to the "suffering just" identified with racial, cultural, and lifestyle minorities. Unlike earlier proponents of religious liberalism, the therapeutic statists oppose anything, including empirical knowledge, that impedes the expression of social and cultural guilt in an effort to raise the self-esteem of designated victims."
25 July, 2003
AN INTERESTING STORY: FEMINISM RULES
And no alternative viewpoints allowed:
It was late in the day. Just as I was preparing to go home, a single woman who was a staff member at our college walked into my office. A part-time editor for a major Christian publishing house, she had a "technical" question regarding a book manuscript that had been assigned to her.
Apparently, the hapless minister's wife who had submitted this piece had asserted that innate differences between the sexes existed and should be respected if marital harmony were to be obtained. A feminist professor in our psychology department had assured this editor that "no evidence whatsoever" existed for this claim of biological differentiation. Sexual differences, universal as they are, are all caused by culture and socialization and thus are malleable and subject to redefinition. So she claimed. Based on this, the editor had quietly removed the offensive section from the manuscript. Now, she'd had second thoughts and was seeking another opinion.
I presented to her what I thought was an impressive set of documentation to the contrary, including anthropological evidences for the universality of many sex role differences, diagrams of male/female brain differences, and photographs comparing male and female nerve cells. While alternative arguments existed, I pointed out, there was extensive and reputable evidence in favor of what the minister's wife had written. In fact, historically, it was the psychologist's view that was novel, and it was difficult to sustain logically and empirically as well. The editor might personally disagree with this viewpoint, but to dismiss it uninspected and even censor it as if it really were pseudo-scientific and poorly documented would be unfair and unwarranted.
The editor listened intently and asked appropriate questions. Then, she startled me with her decision -- the debated passages would remain deleted!
24 July, 2003
Good old capitalism! Someone has seen a market niche opening up as a result of the PC censorship of books that is so prevalent these days. These people are a publishing house for novels that have lost out to PC censorship. Sounds like boredom relief may be on the way!
Wow! This blogger knows how to shoot down political correctness. No wonder he blogs anonymously. He would be in trouble otherwise. Quote:
MEDIA CONTINUE TO PRETEND SURPRISE ABOUT BRYANT'S BEHAVIOR
The other day, a FoxNews empty, talking head said, "Well, what do you expect? He's 24."
Huh? Felony sexual assault?
Well, no. The topic was the adultery he allegedly admitted rather than the rape he has denied.
But how about, "Well, what do you expect? He's a black basketball player."
No one dares to say what everyone knows. The sexual behavior of young black males is as irresponsible in the US as it is all over Africa, where the AIDS rate runs pretty darn high in consequence. It is notably worse than the behavior of males of other races.
And black athletes in particular are always in the headlines for rape, sexual harassment, and any other sex crime imaginable.
Even Fox has not got enough guts for that much reality.
23 July, 2003
Britain sure is a rich mine of PC insanity. These three examples are from the column by John Hay in the Brisbane Sunday Mail of July 20, 2003, p. 55 (not apparently online):
MORE political correctness. Yorkshire (UK) takeaway shopowner Yusuf Nayir grabbed a rolling pin for protection when he chased vandals who were attacking his premises. He caught one of the culprits and handed him over to police - who charged Yusuf with carrying an offensive weapon.
DON'T say it with flowers. A husband in Plymouth, England, was jailed for two months for being in breach of a restraining order. He had sent his estranged wife a bunch of flowers.
POOR little darlings. No, not the kids, the teachers. Children at a school in West Yorkshire have been asked not to bring lunchboxes to school because they are a health and safety risk to teachers. The headmaster said that modern lunchboxes were very bulky and that teachers could trip over them.
I was unable to source these stories via Google but John Hay's email address is given as firstname.lastname@example.org
Blogger Scott Norvell has got himself a weekly column about PC on Fox News that has lots of good (bad?) examples of PC idiocy on it. The most recent column is here. His stuff appears first on his "Tongue-tied" blog. Maybe somebody should alert him to the existence of PC Watch.
22 July, 2003
THE EU JUST LOVES CRIMINALS
The police should not have needed to resort to any of this nonsense anyway:
"An armed robber convicted after being secretly filmed at a police station was awarded o1,000 compensation yesterday for a breach of his human rights.
Stephen Perry, 39, was arrested in Wolverhampton in 1997 by police investigating attacks on mini-cab drivers in which passengers stole cash.
Perry repeatedly refused to join identity parades but was filmed when he visited a police station in the town after officers had adjusted the custody suite camera to take clearer images.
The pictures were edited into a compilation tape showing other individuals and victims picked out Perry as the robber. He was sentenced to five years in prison. Yesterday the European Court of Human Rights, in Strasbourg, found Britain responsible for a breach of Perry's right to respect for his private life. The court said that, although normal use of security cameras would not amount to a breach of the Human Rights convention, he had no reason to expect footage to be used for identification.
"That ploy adopted by the police went beyond the normal use of this type of camera and amounted to an interference with the applicant's rights to respect for his private life," said the judges.
Police had "flouted" the relevant code of practice, failing to ask Perry for his consent or allowing him to see the tape in advance.
The Government was ordered to pay Perry o1,000 in compensation for his "feelings of frustration and invasion of privacy" and nearly o6,700 towards his legal costs.
21 July, 2003
CRUELTY BY BLACKS IS OK
Cruelty towards animals by Australia's blacks is SO correct that the animals cannot even be protected against them. And NOBODY thinks of prosecuting the brain-dead black youths concerned. Warning: Nasty picture on this site. Excerpt:
THE State Government has refused to intervene in what has been described as Queensland's worst case of mass animal cruelty.
Hundreds of wild horses on Palm Island, 65km off north Queensland, have endured torture, beatings and starvation but RSPCA inspectors say the Department of Primary Industries has "washed its hands" of the issue.
In response to horrific photographic and anecdotal evidence of gruesome stabbings, beatings and burning of horses by teenage gangs, Primary Industries Minister Henry Palaszczuk said the department would finance a "Help an Animal Smile" education program. Inspectors are outraged. They are also frustrated they have been refused government help to remove the tortured animals and prosecute the offenders.
PC is powerful. It looks like it has got Boy Scouts of America to cut their own throats. Despite being under no legal obligation to do so, several branches are now allowing homosexual troop leaders. How many parents do they think will send their sons along to camps under those circumstances?
20 July, 2003
BUS driver Tony Campbell cannot believe he was sacked after running over four ducklings. A part-time driver with Brisbane Bus Lines for 15 months until July 10, Mr Campbell said he was dismissed despite putting his passengers' safety first. He had to make a split-second choice between driving over the ducklings that waddled across the path of his bus or braking hard, risking injuries to some of the 15 standing and 78 seated passengers.
19 July, 2003
The influence of political correctness on national holidays is now profound. It seems rather deplorable that in both Australia and the USA, national holidays are being turned into something very different from a national celebration and being turned into a celebration of "diversity" and multiculturalism instead. Must EVERYTHING be turned into Leftist propaganda?
18 July, 2003
A PLAGUE OF GEESE UPON YOU!
Amusing: lots of U.S. recreational areas are being heavily polluted by huge flocks of Geese (and their abundant feces) and nobody seems to be able to figure out a politically correct way to get rid of them. In simpler days they would have have made lots of nice roast dinners for families.
NICE JEW HATRED?
I didn't know this: "As you probably know, "Anti-Semitism" is a designation coined in mid-19th century Germany to offer a more politically correct term for Jew-hatred. ... ". It sure is not a politically-correct term now. It goes to show again that trying to make people use different words for things does not work. If the thing itself is objectionable, any term denoting it will soon become objectionable too.
17 July, 2003
A follow-up to the attempt by Canadian feminists to get criticism of feminism prosecuted as "hate speech": That was too much even for Canadians and it rather blew up in their face, fortunately. They are now ducking and weaving furiously but still have not retracted or apologized. One comment:"As a piece of research, the report is a farce. As a glimpse into the mindset of PC feminists, it is fascinating. And, with the Canadian House of Commons debating whether 'a project that is a poorly disguised attack on men and the family unit' should have received $75,000, no wonder Bouchard is miffed. Feminism's days of slurping at the public trough may be ending."
16 July, 2003
MEN AND WOMEN DIFFERENT AFTER ALL
"It's Official!" According to Psychology Today, it is no longer un-PC to talk openly about differences between the sexes. "Talking openly about sex differences is no longer an exercise in political incorrectness; it is a necessity in fighting disease and forging successful relationships."
Phew! That's a relief ...but why qualify their "okay" with the utilitarian qualifiers about disease and relationship success? Surely a magazine interested in the human sciences would want to encourage discussion and curiosity just because it's interesting and people should be interested in people.
15 July, 2003
GERMS GREER -- THE UNPLEASANT AUSTRALIAN
A reader writes:
"Miranda Devine has a shot at Germaine Greer over her politically correct leftist brand of paedophilia. Greer is of course merely reviving the child sexuality mumbo jumbo of the 1970s left. PP McGuinness noted this strange lapse of historical memory from modern leftists.
Georgia Lewis says Germaine is really something of a "literati shock jock" digging and ferreting around the bottom of the barrel to keep the stocks of Greer Inc. up.
At least Greer is no brainless P.C. robot. Way back in 1989 she wrote an article called "Why Sex Change is a lie" that upset the transexual lobby. Of course Greer's apparent visceral rejection of trannies, if repeated by social conservatives today would be condemned as homophobia."
14 July, 2003
MAN-APE GENETIC DISTANCES SHOW RACE DIFFERENCES?
Is this the ultimate in scientific incorrectness? A flamethrower post from Chris Brand:
"Black people are markedly more similar genetically to chimpanzees than are Whites or Amerindians. This striking result was re-published by "Legion Europa" , giving details of a 1995 paper in American Journal of Human Genetics which apparently had not seemed of interest to the rest of the media. A later paper from Pennsylvania State University confirmed the result and added detail showing Asians somewhat further removed from chimpanzees phylogenetically than Europeans (Molecular Biology & Evolution, 1996)".
I am not an expert on the science involved but it seems sound as far as I can see. Reality can be mightily inconvenient.
I sought a comment from Razib, one of the geneticists at Gene Expression, and he emailed me as follows:
Uh, this is kind of a red herring. the most recent research pushes the divergence between non-african & african populations about 80,000 years back. chimps diverged from hominids a few million years back. africans are more like chimps in their population substructure, not going through multiple bottlenecks and radiations, as both groups reside near their species' point of origin. eurasians are a subset of northeast africans that have gone through multiple bottlenecks and radiations (ergo, southern amerindians, at the end of this process are the least like genetically diverse chimps), so their neutral markers show less diversity, so they would probably match less with very diversified species genetically like than africans, who are the most genetically diversified human beings. this of course is all in the neutral non-adaptive parts of the genome....
Razib does not seem to deny the basic point that African differences are most like Chimp differences but disputes that the similarity has much significance.
13 July, 2003
GREENIE CORRECTNESS GONE MAD
Florida state game officials fined Michael McCormick of Tavares, Florida, $180 because he lassoed an alligator that was about to attack a woman while she was holding two infants. You see, it is illegal to have possession of an alligator in Florida, apparently for any reason.
When police arrived they made McCormick cut the rope and then the police called the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to come and catch the alligator, which they never did.
A week earlier a 12-year-old boy in Tavares was attacked and killed by an alligator. Maybe even the same alligator.
Source: Ananova (UK) 23-Jun-03. Via Jerry Lerman.
12 July, 2003
I have lifted this straight off the New Criterion blog:
A commencement address worth reading
"The columnist Neal Boortz wrote a commencement address that we find refreshing for its cant-free attack on the academic culture of political correctness, big government, and sundry other evils. A couple of sample paragraphs:
You have been taught that the real value of any group of people - be it a social group, an employee group, a management group, whatever - is based on diversity. This is a favored liberal ideal because diversity is based not on an individual's abilities or character, but on a person's identity and status as a member of a group. Yes - it's that liberal group identity thing again. Within the great diversity movement group identification -- be it racial, gender based, or some other minority status -- means more than the individual's integrity, character or other qualifications. Brace yourself. You are about to move from this academic atmosphere where diversity rules, to a workplace and a culture where individual achievement and excellence actually count. No matter what your professors have taught you over the last four years, you are about to learn that diversity is absolutely no replacement for excellence, ability, and individual hard work. From this day on every single time you hear the word "diversity" you can rest assured that there is someone close by who is determined to rob you of every vestige of individuality you possess.
Alas, this commencement address has never been delivered because no one has had temerity to invite Mr. Boortz to campus."
11 July, 2003
Conservative Irish blogger, Right-Wing Analysis, has this in his post of 10th:
An article has been published in the Irish Times that is so staggeringly politically-correct that I just have to ridicule it. In it, Richard Adams condemns the Harry Potter books as a "political bandwagon". Harry Potter, he declares, is a Conservative. "A paternalistic, One-Nation Tory, perhaps, but a Tory nonetheless" (Honestly, this is serious). He also points out that Rowling is a honorary member of the British Weights and Measurments Society, one of her fellow members being Norris McWhirter "once a friend of apartheid". Ah yes, that familiar smear, guilt by association, and how unsuprising to hear it used by a liberal like this one.
Association is not the only crime in his books, however, so is omission of minority practises. "Hogwarts celeberates Christmas and Halloween, but there are no feasts for Rosh Hashnash and Diwali" For God's sake, it's a book written by a Western Christian for a Western Christian audience. If someone complained about an author of childrens book in, say, India, not including enough references to Christian practises, no doubt he would spout indignance from his imaginary high moral ground.
Worse to come, however. JK Rowling, he states, is committed to the traditional family, as if this were comparable to cannabilism or child-sacrifice
10 July, 2003
An Australian article blasts feminist political correctness by giving extensive evidence that it is boys, not girls, who have been disadvantaged in our school systems for a long time. A few excerpts:
It was known back in 1975 during the tenure of the Victorian Committee on Equal Opportunity in Schools that boys outnumbered girls 4: 1 among students requiring remediation in basic literacy skills.
It was quite contrary to the feminist mindset of the members of the main Committee to have any recommendation that benefitted boys, or indeed to allow any hint that it was not females who were the victims of an oppressive patriarchal system that kept women in servitude. Showing that girls had superior literacy skills and a 15% higher success rate in HSC exams would have blown the feminist mythology to smithereens.
The problem with boys and education seems to occur in all English-speaking democracies. In the USA, African-American women are in universities at double the number of African-American men. Males who are functionally illiterate and unemployed become alienated from society and are very vulnerable to being involved in crime and other anti-social behaviours.
Women, even poorly educated women, always have a biological role. recognized by society, as mothers. We deprive men of their earner-provider role at our peril.
9 July, 2003
EMPLOYEES of a London travel agency will be forced to report their affairs with co-workers under new guidelines. Under a rule about to be introduced, if staff of unequal status at Thomson Travel become romantically involved they need to report it to the company immediately. Bosses will then take steps to keep them apart in the office. According to Thomson, the aim is to prevent anyone who is sleeping with the boss from getting special treatment in the office as a result.
8 July 2003
A PC WINNER
Robert Kirby writes:
I have waited a long time to become a member of a legally protected group. My entire life I have been white, male and English-speaking middle class. In the eyes of the American political scene, I was the problem. All of that changed last month when I turned 50 and qualified for membership in the AARP, formerly the American Association of Retired People. I am now officially elderly, one of the most powerful disadvantaged groups in America. I don't feel old. I can still make it to the bathroom (generally) on time, I can dress myself and when people flip me off on the highway it's not because I was driving too slow. But now that I technically have the right to complain, I shall make the most of it. No longer am I a faceless persecutor. I am the most powerful force in America -- a victim.
Not all old people feel this way. My wife has been elderly longer than I have, yet seems to be ashamed of it. She wears makeup, does her hair and makes prolonged, complicated efforts to appear younger than she is. Not me. Being old is my ticket out of complete accountability for whatever opinion I choose to have. No more do I have to shut up for fear of being politically incorrect. Damn it, I am a victim. You can't get more politically correct than that.
7 July, 2003
EFFECTIVE IMMIGRATION CONTROL INCORRECT
"I think that drastic actions are necessary to protect our nation. I think that we should immediately put a moratorium on all immigration. We should only allow people to enter our country if they have a United States citizen as a sponsor, and if both people pass an extensive background check. We should let few, if any immigrants and visitors in from countries that are known to sponsor terror. We must clamp down on our borders, with troops and fences; illegal immigration must be stopped.
In today's politically correct atmosphere, my views on immigration must seem extreme. They should not; not only is regulating immigration essential to keep our enemies out during times of war, but regulations like these used to be the norm. When my ancestors came here from Ireland, Scotland, England, France and Germany, they did so legally. They came on ships, to specific immigration centers. There, they were screened for diseases, criminal backgrounds and malevolent ideologies. Those carrying diseases, and those whose loyalties were questionable (especially anarchists) were turned away or quarantined. The majority of those refused entrance for disease died, and many of the anarchists and criminals returned to prisons. America is a nation of immigrants, but not a nation of enemies. Our motto is "Out of many, one," not "out of many, a bunch of terrorists, predators and parasites seeking to destroy our nation." Somewhere in recent years our legislators have signed a national suicide pact on our behalf by proclaiming diversity to be more important than sovereignty and common sense."
6 July, 2003
MORE than two-thirds of Australians are fed up with political correctness. A survey of 1200 people by research company The Truth Report found more than 70 per cent of men and 65 per cent of women are tired having to watch what they say. Those aged 18 to 24 and over 50 were most likely to be annoyed.
5 July, 2003
MORE FROM DIANE RAVITCH
A review of my book in "The Scotsman" (Edinburgh) said that a well-known local writer for children sold a story to an American textbook company, along with illustrations. The U.S. publisher, however, informed her that she could not show a little girl sitting on her grandfather's lap, as the drawing implied incest. So, the author changed the adult's face, so that the little girl was sitting on her grandmother's lap instead. A contributor to a major textbook series prepared a story comparing the great floods in 1889 in Johnstown, Pa., with those in 1993 in the Midwest, but was unable to find an acceptable photograph. The publisher insisted that everyone in the rowboats must be wearing a lifevest to demonstrate safety procedures.
4 July, 2003
SOME GOOD ADVICE
Harry Potter and other vibrant exceptions aside, there is something vaguely depressing about much current children's literature. One remedy for parents who wish to protect their kids from the bland and the preachy is to pull out a passed-down edition of "Make Way for Ducklings" (1941), "Blueberries for Sal" (1948) or "One Morning in Maine" (1952), all by the author and illustrator Robert McCloskey, who died Monday, age 88.
In the pages of these classic works, in the expressive, monochrome drawings, there is no Big Sociological Message, forced sunniness or sentimentality, but rather the gentle but sharply observed depiction of children's--or ducklings'--dilemmas, regional landscapes and midcentury American cities.
AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL CORRECTNESS
A CHILDREN'S book author faces a possible $55,000 fine after the Aboriginal owners of Uluru moved to take legal action to ban his book about a teddy bear who climbs the rock. In a landmark case aimed at stopping white people disrespecting the rock, Uluru's traditional owners will ask the Federal Court this month to ban the popular children's book by Sydney author Alan Campbell. The Aboriginal owners, Anangu, say Campbell's book, Bromley Climbs Uluru, is deeply offensive to their culture because it contains photographs of a bear sitting on the summit of the rock. Anangu do not like people to climb the rock and take photographs at the summit. The commercial use of such images in illegal. But Campbell describes the row, revealed by The Weekend Australian Magazine in March, as a case of political correctness gone mad. "I'd like to fight this case for the sake of others - this is a freedom of speech issue, it is censorship on a grand scale," Campbell said yesterday.
3 July, 2003
IT HAD TO HAPPEN
JK Rowling's blockbuster books about the boy wizard Harry Potter have been branded as "evil" by a conservative Christian school in Melbourne. As a result, the five books in the Harry Potter series will not be stocked in the library of the Maranatha Christian College
2 July, 2003
Japan is so politically incorrect in some ways that it is amusing. These quotes from Japanese politicians come from the London Times via Cronaca:
'Japan is becoming a considerably intelligent society, far more so than the US. A large number of blacks, Mexicans and Puerto Ricans live in the US. On average the level is still extremely low'
Yasuhiro Nakasone, former Prime Minister
'The most harmful thing that civilisation has brought about is baba (old hags). It is sinful for a woman to continue to live after she loses her reproductive capacity'
Shintaro Ishihara, Governor of Tokyo
'The voters could not have vanished faster if I'd been an Aids patient'
Yoshiro Mori, former Prime Minister, after a poorly attended rally
1 July, 2003
An email from a U.K. correspondent:
"I was effectively refused service at Waitrose deli counter in London's Kings Road on Sunday, as the Muslim behind the counter "can't handle pork." This from behind a barricade of hams and salami. He offered me some cheese instead.
I rang the manager the next day and asked if he could help me with my application to be a fighter pilot, which I cannot fill out because I'm blind."
MARK TWAIN INCORRECT
A family in Michigan has filed a formal complaint against a high school teacher for reading a racial slur from the text of Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, reports the Detroit Free Press. William Robinson, 18, claims a teacher at Cousino High School in Warren used the word when reading from the book and during later discussions about it. He said he was offended. Robinson's mother, Theda Harris, said the family plans to file a lawsuit against the district. A spokesman for the district pointed out that the slur is in the book.