Hands up, who’s heard of the Campaign Against Political Correctness? I came across this group a couple of years ago. It’s part of an agenda to roll back the gains made by those of us who have struggled for equality over the decades. For these people, equality and tolerance are seen as bad things; signs of animalistic weakness, anathema to bullies, misogynists and self-described libertarians everywhere.
The CAPC operates as a flak machine and perhaps one of the most interesting developments in the way in which flak machines operate is how they’ve adopted the language of their ideological ‘enemies’. The Campaign Against Political Correctness is a group of ‘ like-minded people’ who believe political correctness is destroying British society. On their home page they have appropriated the anti-war slogan ‘Not in my name’ and conscripted it to serve a different and opposing ideological agenda. This extract from their website sets out their ‘principles’:
We strongly believe that political correctness is wrong because:
- It is causing tension between communities where there need not be any.
- It is encouraging racism and sexism – especially in the job market – encouraging people to be given jobs based on the colour of their skin or their sex and not on their merit.
- It tries to protect those identified as “minorities” (also including women!) despite the fact that they very rarely consult these people before they speak on their behalf and more often than not thoroughly insult them by assuming that they are not perfectly capable of defending themselves or asking for help if they want it (see our “Latest News” and “Your Stories” sections for examples of this).
- Although it is supposed to be around to prevent offence it deems it acceptable to offend the majority of people on a regular basis.
What is noticeable about this set of ‘principles’ is the way it swats away the real issues like some annoying insect. The second and third points are revealing because they tend to make the claim that others are speaking on behalf of minorities and not the minorities themselves. This objection appears to be rooted in the notion that anything that is done in relation to minorities is a form of ‘extreme liberalism’ and that any effort to achieve parity in the workplace or office is indicative of the further erosion of the fabric of society and calls into question of the British idea of ‘fair play’. Ironic, isn’t it?
What is interesting about groups such as CAPC is the way in which they propagate and sustain the myth that anything that does not operate within its ideological contours is foreign or alien to the British ‘way of life’. Sometimes, to hear these people talk, you’d think we were still living in the 1980s.
It is perhaps unsurprising that the CAPC’s spokesman in the Commons is Conservative MP, Philip Davies, who recently failed to declare an interest during a Commons debate on gambling and is to be investigated by the House.
Funnily enough, the CAPC site doesn’t look as though it’s been updated since 2011. It still carries a story about Davies coming under fire for suggesting that disabled people be paid less than the minimum wage for their labour. The reason he gives for this is as specious as his concern for the disabled. The Guardian also has the story. Here’s what he said:
‘The people who are most disadvantaged by the national minimum wage are the most vulnerable in society. My concern about it is it prevents those people from being given the opportunity to get the first rung on the employment ladder.
Naturally, Davies complained that anyone who criticized his ‘ideas’ were spreading “leftwing hysteria”.
Horrible little man. Horrible little group. Horrible little site.
Here’s a taste of the kind of comments people leave on the site.
Political correctness is not free living, its people interfering in things where they’re not wanted!!!
What does “free living” mean? Here’s another.
Political Correctness and Human Rights laws are ruining this once great nation. A stand must be made and something must be done!
Yeah, damn and blast those human rights! Let’s bring back the rack and the ducking stool!