Friday, April 10, 2015

Give Reality a Chance

The language of political correctness is a suffocating foetor which blots out rational thought and reasonable discussion, and reduces men to exclusively political creatures, helpless as individuals and only feeling a false sense of power when united with others who are equally helpless and ignorant. Politics is an area where there is not only strength in numbers, but reality in numbers – the only reality that exists for those who are committed to the collective as the basic unit of human existence.

But there is something worse than PC language -- or, at least, something more tiresome and inane -- and that's “cop language” -- that robotic, multisyllabic (by people who may have, at best, sixth-grade verbal skills), mealy-mouthing hodgepodge bereft of all meaning and designed (by politicians, government lawyers, and “agents of social change”) to protect the Regime's foot soldiers against any and all accusations of prejudice, bias, stereotyping, etc. In other words, to make sure that whatever the police say doesn't serve to ruin the chances of a successful prosecution and conviction. So these hapless cops are reduced to using words they were not brought up using, and are only vaguely aware of their meaning, in order to convey “information” which has absolutely no information value to the media, the public, etc. and which basically requires a translator to figure out what they're talking about. (Is it any wonder more and more of them have decided the hell with it, just shoot first and avoid all the humiliating convoluted verbiage? Take desk duty for a week or two; it's worth it.) (And you think they talk that way to each other down at the station house, when there are no news cameras around? Forget about it.)

But there is something even worse, and that's the language the media are, apparently, required to use whenever discussing a criminal case. Regardless of the strength of the evidence – often overwhelming – the “perp” is always “the accused” and their actions are always “alleged” right up to the point of conviction, if not beyond. Now... this may be technically correct if you're a law school graduate, but hey, we're talking about the media here, OK? I remember when the radio guys in Buffalo used to describe burglars as “yeggs” (when's the last time you heard that word?), and that was way before anything like a trial. But hey, all of the listeners knew what “yeggs” were – it has a lot more cachet than “the accused”, to which the average citizen would have responded, “Whattaya mean 'accused'? He did it, ya dopes!”

Add to which, the right to “a prompt and speedy trial” has been totally overtaken by politics, legalistic red tape, and “sensitivity” -- so that, in the aftermath of a crime, victims suffer or recover, evidence is endlessly discovered, debated, and quashed, people die, babies are born, and yet the “accused” remains “the accused”, for months or even years, like a character out of Kafka. There may be some legal systems in the world – past or present – where this is considered normal, but ought it to be considered normal for us? Hard to imagine. I'll bet that a great sigh of relief comes from the law enforcement and judicial community every time a “perp” either takes their own life or has it taken by the police – “At least that's one long, drawn-out ordeal we don't have to go through.” (And did you ever notice that when the accused-to-be winds up dead, they are no longer the accused? Then they are referred to as the one who committed the crime. That is, they are tried and found guilty by the mere fact of no longer being available for trial. Interesting, huh?)

Case in point. One year ago a strange little rat-like creature walked into his senior high school in a Pittsburgh suburb with a handful of kitchen knives and proceeded to stab everyone within reach until he was finally subdued. The victims, 21 in number, all survived, and they are, of course, in various stages of recovery, physical and psychological. (And by the way, where were all the football jocks while this was going on? Where were all the guys who spend every Saturday morning at Master Kim's Tae Kwon Do? It's hard to believe someone can stab 21 people in a row, over quite a few minutes, without someone stepping up and taking him out before the number gets that high.)

But at any rate, we have 21 eyewitnesses, namely the victims, and probably scores more. And yet the media still have to bend over backwards and tie themselves in knots, describing this guy as a “suspect” and his act as “alleged (by the authorities)”. All of the events are preceded by the words “authorities say”. (I imagine the victims “say” the same thing – or would if asked.) Either that or they make it sound as if the knives, acting alone, caused the wounds. The knives are assumed guilty, even if the person who used them is not.  (Kind of reminds me of "gun control", now that you mention it.)

OK – so a guy is “suspected” of doing something dozens of people saw him do (and they all agree – there are no dissenters), and his acts, from which 21 people are still recovering, are “alleged”. Which means – what? They might not have happened? In which case, was everyone stabbed by someone else (or by each other, or themselves), and they just imagined that it was this one guy who did it all? Or maybe they only imagined they'd been stabbed; better check with the local hospitals to see whether there were any actual, visible wounds or just a bunch of babbling hysterics claiming they had them.

I don't want to seem cynical or crabby about all this, and I certainly don't take the event lightly (any more than I take so many other events that have become typical of government, i.e. “public” schools). It's just that we've drifted so far from any objective concept of reality that we have difficulty describing real, traumatic events when they actually happen – as if everything has now been relegated to a fantasy world, a parallel universe of elaborate animation and skilled voice-overs, from which it has to be reclaimed if we're ever to get our thinking straight. It actually reminds me of the film “Inception”, where there are so many layers of “reality” that one loses track of which is the real, or basic, or original one. As one layer of programmed fantasy is piled on another, each layer becomes the “reality” for the next layer, and so on. It gets to the point where even the characters lose track.

But does this really reflect the everyday experience of most people? I mean, don't we basically all get up, have breakfast, go to work, drive, shop, etc.? Isn't that our baseline? Well... I would be willing to claim that there are people out there whose real baseline (as far as they are subjectively concerned) is television – or computers – or the Internet – or video games. They may have physical existence in the same world as the rest of us, but their consciousness dwells elsewhere (or nowhere, as the case may be). The perceptual/psychological world where you live is your reality, in other words; what other people think is of very little relevance unless they somehow attempt to penetrate your world (or you mistakenly stumble into theirs). (And you'll notice how the friendships and bonds formed within these fantasy worlds often turn out to be stronger and more enduring than the relatively dull, ho-hum relationships people have in the “real” world.) (There was a meme some years back in which a guy would come home from work and his wife would spend an hour telling him what happened on all the “soaps” that day. Nothing about her actual here-and-now existence – maybe because there was nothing to tell, which is sad.)

So I suppose in some worlds – in some parallel universes – those 21 people didn't get stabbed, after all. And the “alleged” perpetrator simply showed up for school and attended classes as usual. Maybe that's what the media are trying to do – reduce the pain by, somehow, reducing the reality value of events. If something only “sort of” happened, or if there's an equal chance that it didn't happen... well, maybe that doesn't make it OK, but it makes it less bad. How are we supposed to judge events that almost didn't happen, and the people who almost didn't make them happen? Judgment is based on reality, on facts – or so we've always been led to believe. But if even core reality is just a point of view – just subjective, and prone to all sorts of bias and prejudices... if the best we can hope for in the way of reality is some sort of agreed-upon, politically-based momentary “position” which can be altered with no effort... something with no more lasting significance than a “sound bite” or a “screen capture”... why, then, we have the perfect makings of a slave-state populated by mindless serfs. Who, of course, attend public school and read, or view, the mainstream media.

Maybe that's what it's ultimately all about. Wean us away from this “reality thing” so that we become purely social, political creatures like bees or ants. If that's the agenda, then I'd say it's already well under way.

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