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  1. #1

    Political correctness vs the arts

    I consider myself a liberal, but the rules of political correctness have to make it hard for comedians, writers, and free thinkers to speak truth from their hearts anymore...What do you think of all the socail rules vs the individuals true thoughts and feelings?

  2. #2
    Toubabo Koomi The Dude's Avatar
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    It doesn't even need to be their true thoughts. They could be liberal as hell but if they make a joke and say the N word for example they will be buried.

    That's why I like bands like Anal Cunt because they just don't give a shit. Homophobic, misogynistic and rasist lyrics but whether or not they believe in it nobody really knows especially since the vocalist is dead.

    I think art should be free for you to express anything. Literally anything. If you don't agree with it just ignore or don't pay attention. If it's really popular then you're probably wrong, if not then you made the right choice ignoring it. BTW I'm not saying all art that isn't popular is bad at all. I meant in terms of whether it is widely considered "good" art.

    It reminds me of a DVD an ex of mine brought round in high school. All it was, was footage of knife fights and was kinda disturbing, but in a crude and simple way you could call it art.
    Last edited by The Dude; 07-25-2018 at 04:46 AM.

  3. #3
    Yeah...the best thing one can do with bad art is ignore it, since art is an expression and by nature it wants to be noticed.

    I don't see how walking on eggshells can be good for art.

  4. #4
    The Brain
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    I think it's really difficult. I do think it's important than artists/comedians are free to express things in a non-PC way but I think there's a big history of using that as a shield to excuse very shitty behaviors. Personally I try to take it on a case by case basis. I'm definitely uncomfortable with arbitrary rules being set on what people can and can't say but I also think there are some things that society won't and probably shouldn't tolerate, but it's really difficult to say where that line should be, let alone who gets to decide.

  5. #5
    See I think art does little to influence or especially indocternate. Whoever became a serial killer because they read silence of the lambs? Who a racist bc they heard a racist joke.... usually in art you like the way something is told. You buy it out of respect for style and beat not out of belief. Does art ask for your belief system? To regulate it because of ones beliefs feels imposing And God damn how far can the line go?

    I think someone is more likely to become a racist sitting in a certain kinds of churches than they will hearing a racist joke. I'm a white fella myself but love hearing black and Hispanic comedians laugh at white ppl if the jokes are good.
    Last edited by Benjamin Button; 07-26-2018 at 04:31 AM.

  6. #6
    Cero Miedo Mystic's Avatar
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    Personally, I think even blurring these ideas, even making it a conversation, is problematic. I don't view rhetoric as violence. I believe a whole outrage industry has been created in order to silence particular people, in order to manipulate for power, in order to, rather than winning an conversation of ideas, to silence people through fear and mob mentality. I think good people join the mob because 1. they are indoctrinated into it 2. they don't want people to suffer and they're taught this is social justice 3. they like fitting in with a group and getting the support that comes with virtue signaling.

    Honestly, the more people apologize and try, the tighter the lines get. A lot of good liberals have been eaten and destroyed by this bullshit. I hope more people will rise up and tell these people to fuck off.

    Judge folks by their actions, not their words. It's insulting to people who are truly suffering to make "social justice" issues out of jokes, language, etc.

    If you don't like, don't watch. But it's not about that. It's about control. That's why pushback is necessary.

  7. #7
    The Brain
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    I think someone is more likely to become a racist sitting in a certain kinds of churches than they will hearing a racist joke.
    This is a good shout, and one I agree with. On the larger idea that media doesn't influence, or doesn't to a harmful extent? I honestly don't know. I guess that's the basic question at hand. I guess I honestly don't feel I have the perspective to answer it. It's really easy for me as a white guy to say nah, that kind of speech isn't harmful! But, if it was harmful, I feel like I would be in the very last group to actually feel any harm. If someone in a position of power or influence is using racial slurs, for example (just for example, not targeting anyone in particular), I don't feel like I have the right to go to the group that was being slurred and say hey, it's just language, you're not really suffering. Then again, if it's in the context of art or comedy, I'm not the type to try to get offended on behalf of someone else, or at least I try not to be.

    I generally keep my opinions to myself, I guess, because I do think it's a tough issue. Most of all, if it does come up, I do think it's important to engage in real conversation on both sides and try not to make broad generalizations. Not everyone concerned with social justice is a phony virtue signaller, and not everyone who uses non PC language is out to oppress people. I would guess on both sides those types are the minority.

  8. #8
    I agree with you on the dialogue part. Ppl need to listen to each other.

    Definitely agree that a person in power should never insult a person for their color, sex, sexual Orientation and whatnot.

  9. #9
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    It's gone way too far. Political correctness in the workplace is completely acceptable. Its acceptable and should be the case in a lot of atmospheres, but there is zero room for it in the realm of art. If someone creates art, and it is considered racist, sexist, or mysogynistic, or hateful, you have the power to not listen, watch, or buy whatever products are associated to it. To censor is to prevent artistic expressionism. Even if you dont agree with that expressionism, it is necessary. Everything is everything. All life has a right to create art. And even bad art can create positive change, even unintentionally. If it creates negative change, that's not for us to control. In the future that change could in turn create positive change. We cant blot out the parts of life we dont agree with.

    Art needs to breathe. It needs to bleed and live. It needs to at times reflect the current climate, no matter how ugly. Without art we are lost as a civilization. And in this climate art is dying. Its so depressing to see. Im not encouraging hate, but if hate happens, all you can do is control yourself, and your own environment. Censoring art is never the answer imo.


  10. #10
    That, kleck, was art in itself. Well put.

  11. #11
    The Brain
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    I think part of the problem is that politics and entertainment have started to overlap so much in recent years. I agree we can't simply blot out what we don't like. As far as art causing negative change, that is a real concern but it's hard to anticipate sometimes and harder still to know what to do about it.

    Do you really think art is dying though? I feel like it's thriving, at least in a lot of areas.

  12. #12
    Cero Miedo Mystic's Avatar
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    I've lived long enough to know that the progressive left is the new religious right.

  13. #13
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    Comedy is on life support. Music industry is scrutinized like never before. People are even afraid to explore, as the backlash is so severe that it's like undertow pulling you into a lifetime of being perpetually stranded.

    Even if art is finding a way, it is becoming harder for it to. At this rate, it will eventually become impossible.


  14. #14
    Truth is whites and blacks and Hispanics and gays friends....I think politics divide people more than it should
    Last edited by Benjamin Button; 07-30-2018 at 09:55 AM.

  15. #15
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I think I get a lot less exercised by this than a lot of you, judging by the thread. That's for a couple of reasons, but mainly it's because I don't see it as that new a phenomenon, so much as the tiniest twist on something that's basically been there throughout our history. First, to revisit this quote.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mystic View Post
    I've lived long enough to know that the progressive left is the new religious right.
    This is fair enough to a degree, but you've got to add a couple of modifiers to it. The first is to note that at some level there can't be a 'new' religious right because they are still there, and still using much the same tactics, so it's not like they've gone away and the ground is solely occupied by people on the left. And second, you can actually drop the word religious out of there, because it's been a tactic used across the right - religious or otherwise - for a long, long time.

    The truth is that every culture, every society, at some level polices discourse. That's one of the whole reasons that freedom of speech became a thing in the first place, because people in control realised that for the most part, citizens would actually perform the function for the state anyway, and they didn't need to do it in the top-down, heavy-handed way. That hasn't always stopped them, of course, but it's an important part of why the idea was allowed to germinate. Even so, look at the number of ways that people have policed free speech in American history. From the castigation and even lynching of abolitionists through McCarthyism to boycotts of artists seen as 'seditious' or 'disloyal'.... I mean, I could go on, but the long and short of it is that policing the acceptable boundaries of speech and opinion is something that has always happened in America, and in the rest of the world that I know about too for that matter, and the only substantive difference is that tactics that have been used very successfully by one side are being put to use by the other (with much the same success). That's it, as far as I can see.

    In fact, you can go further. The idea of a community in which you have 'total free speech' and in which that doesn't happen is actually a logical impossibility. That's why Free Speech only really applies in certain cases and has very little bearing on the consequences of your speech in the wider world.


    As for the effect on the arts... again, I think we can be in danger of overreacting about it. Yes, every so often I see something that I think isn't ideal, but in 9/10 of the times where I see language that you'd consider non-PC, it doesn't attract negative attention because of the context and the way it's handled. Of the remaining 1/10, the vast majority of the cases that do attract a backlash tend to be trying to court controversy - can they really then complain when they find it? The actual number of instances where someone seems to be acting in good faith and still gets hammered... we're probably taking about a fraction of one percent of all the art out there.

    And I think we're also in danger of forgetting that far more, infinitely more restrictive times than ours gave us Shakespeare, Chaucer, the Golden Age of Hollywood, Jazz, Rock N' Roll, Beethoven, Mozart, Charles Dickens, Oscar Wilde, the Silver Age of Comic books, Dante Alighieri, the giants of Vaudeville and Music Hall.... and again, I could go on, because pretty much every major artist in history flourished in a time when there was more restriction on what you could say, and the penalties for transgressing those boundaries were greater, than today. Point is, if we're going to be realistic about this you have to acknowledge that artists have always had to walk a series of lines, and one of those is the boundaries of taste and decency as set by the audience and the public at large. I don't really think there's a credible case to be made that expecting the same thing of today's artists really affects their ability to be creative in any way. If you do think there's a real creative gap in today's art, I'd look for other explanations.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  16. #16
    I disagree that the impact of the religious right is what it was. Unfortunately, the Republican party is reaching to an even worse base. At one point the religious right fought against any congress or president doing a decent job with its dogmatic values. Those values don't have the same level of voice that the dogmatic left values has, now. Also, you go back centuries to debate that these liberal dogmatic values couldn't effect the arts nowadays.

    There's a recent interview from Steve Carrel that said the office wouldn't work nowadays, because of the things his character did wouldn't be accepted. Tim Allan talked about his struggles with today's climate.

    I bet Steve Carrel is as liberal as they come and the Office is as good as it gets, but due to over the top sensitivity he feels the show wouldn't work.

    There is a ridiculous political correctness effecting art.Seems the United States swing back and forth in extremes, and moderate voices in between are just watching the swing over their heads pass way to their right and to their left.
    Last edited by Benjamin Button; 12-03-2018 at 02:22 AM.

  17. #17
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Benjamin Button View Post
    I disagree that the impact of the religious right is what it was. Unfortunately, the Republican party is reaching to an even worse base. At one point the religious right fought against any congress or president doing a decent job with its dogmatic values. Those values don't have the same level of voice that the dogmatic left values has, now. Also, you go back centuries to debate that these liberal dogmatic values couldn't effect the arts nowadays.

    There's a recent interview from Steve Carrel that said the office wouldn't work nowadays, because of the things his character did wouldn't be accepted. Tim Allan talked about his struggles with today's climate.

    I bet Steve Carrel is as liberal as they come and the Office is as good as it gets, but due to over the top sensitivity he feels the show wouldn't work.

    There is a ridiculous political correctness effecting art.Seems the United States swing back and forth in extremes, and moderate voices in between are just watching the swing over their heads pass way to their right and to their left.
    Happy to talk it through if you want, but you might want to have another swing at that when you haven't been drinking because that post doesn't make much sense in it's current form.

    I've read enough of your columns to put that down to nothing more your recent post in the drunk posting thread....

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  18. #18
    Yes, I drank alchohol. But I'm simply making two points concerning modern American politics/comedy and arts.

    1.) How much do you hear from the religious right as compared to late 90's/early 2000's.... During the Clinton administration and into the Bush administration, God and the Bible was much into politics from a right wing standard. There was a certain base always being reached out to.

    Today I think there's a less religious and more rascist group on the replublican side being reached out to...There's not much a religious.right that we hear from... though there are voices from Jerry Fallwell Jr and others we hear from, the religious right voices aren't as prelavent in politics as they once were. While on the left there's a high level of sensitivity that drives into art insomuch Bill Maher, a liberal, doesn't feel comfortable going on college campuses to tell jokes. And I mentioned other example of comedian actors who've said good, liberal shows may not work on modern TV.

    2 ) I'm saying between the alt right and really sensitive left, there aren't a lot of moderate voices being heard.

    Simply making discussion points as I just came across this thread for the first time in awhile. This isn't meant to be personal.

  19. #19
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I certainly wasn't trying to be personal. Hey, I've come on here after a few, posted some things, and read them back sober and haven't been able to make sense of them myself. So when I read that, and it didn't really follow clearly, knowing you were a smart guy and seeing your other post, I thought you might want to have another go with a clearer head. No offence was intended through any of that, and I hope none was taken.

    I don't especially disagree with anything in that second post. But I do think most of the things I said still hold. There's never been a time where things like discourse, jokes, and the acceptable topics of conversation haven't been policed by the audience, and we live in one of the few times in the US/UK where it hasn't been actively policed by the government, too. The only thing that makes it feel different is we're living in and can clearly see public taste and the boundaries of what is acceptable changing, and that might be because a left that was traditionally a bit passive is getting as militant as the right wing were when they insisted on censoring Hollywood, on comics, and on all the various television censoring that went on right up to the millennium.

    So yeah, the specifics can seem a little weird but when you take a step back it doesn't look like people are subject to anything that hasn't been there throughout history - except you could say that because these lines are currently contested this is one of the few times where it's possible to take it in the neck from both sides.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  20. #20
    No offense. I consider myself a liberal. For me if restriction is coming from the right, it's one thing. Still, since the power in recent history in Hollywood has been from the left, the right wing could not shut up the arts...When it's left wing sensitivity and the power is on the left it may limit good art ..There's something to Bill Maher not being able to tell jokes on college campuses. There's something to the TV show, the Office, not being able to work with the current climate. Art needs realism and characters and jokes that aren't needing to walk on egg shells. Power on the left being policed by the right will lead to rebellion in arts which is interesting. Power on the left submitting to police on the left limits art.

  21. #21
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I don't know that I think those cases mean a great deal, in the grand scheme of things. It all comes back to one thing for me. Whenever tastes change, artists either change with them or they are replaced by others that are more in line with the new order of things. I don't know a lot about Bill Maher but I don't see why the basic rules wouldn't still apply. You either get comfortable and learn to work within the new structure, find a way to work against the tide with a particular outlet or someone else comes along and takes your place.

    I'm not sure I buy the left on left thing because even with that, it's still a lot less restrictive on what you can say than pretty much any other moment in our history. Even with getting it in the neck from both sides, there are still more areas out there which have been brought out of various taboos than those which are now off-limits. And even then, there are very few topics that are off-limits, it's more the treatment of certain topics that tend to get adverse reactions. The only difference is that because it's changed when we're grown up and already used to something, it seems weird, unfamiliar, more restrictive than if we were young and just learning things for the first time around. But that says far more about us and our relation to the events than about the question itself.


    Meh, it is what it is. I come back to the original point that I started with. I just get a lot less exercised about this than other people. I've heard plenty of arguments before but I'm still not convinced there's anything particularly special about the time we're living through now.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

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