By Bill Cleary
Political correctness (adjectivally, politically correct; both forms commonly abbreviated to PC) is a term which denotes language, ideas, policies, and behavior seen as seeking to minimize social and institutional offense in occupational, gender, racial, cultural, sexual orientation, disability, and age-related contexts. Wikipedia
I was astonished last week after hearing that NPR commentator Juan Williams was fired from his job for stating that people in Muslim garb on airplanes make him “nervous”. He told the truth. After 9/11 the majority of us feel that way. But Williams made the mistake of not being politically correct in his conversation with Fox News Bill O’Reilly. Because he didn’t emphasize Muslin terrorists he is being criticized by those that have a far left or right agenda.
Speaking on Fox News, where he is a contributor, Williams said, "I mean, look, Bill, I'm not a bigot. You know the kind of books I've written about the civil rights movement in this country. But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous."
Reporters, columnists and the general public are finding it harder to write or discuss certain issues without some group taking offense.
For a further example just look at the contract negotiations between the unions representing the paid firemen and the City of Gloucester City. Ask a resident or a business owner to comment openly about this controversy and they will gladly tell you their thoughts with reservations. “Don’t use my name I don’t want the union or City Fathers after me”.
Presently those talks between the City and the union have broken off and the matter is going to arbitration. The City has started the process of laying off firemen because of the lack of funding for the fire department.
In a new Rasmussen Reports survey, 57 percent of adults say that America has become too politically correct, while 23 percent say the nation is not politically correct enough. Seventy-four percent regard political correctness as a problem in the United States today. Why? Simply put, in the effort to be "PC" our rights to Freedom of Speech and Freedom of the Press are slowly being diminished.
A Busy Agenda-Gloucester City Council approved a resolution at the Oct. 21 caucus meeting to enter into an Inter-local-services agreement with the County of Camden wherein the City provides for snow removal from designated County roads in exchange for pro rata allotments of road salt or calcium from the County.
A resolution awarding a contract for a 20 yard rear load refuse packer, costing $122,976 was passed. The low bidder was Robert H. Hoover & Sons of Flanders NJ. Remington & Vernick City Engineers were paid an additional $12,267, at no cost to the city, for reconstruction of the Joy and Barnaby Street projects. Krisanna Construction of Hammonton was awarded the job to reconstruct Atlantic Street at the low bid of $124,387. Council endorsed the Phase III UEZ Matching Facade Grant in the amount of $150,000. The project will include the original facade program in addition to expanding the program to permit replacement of roofs, walkways and parking lots.i Also passed was Phase IV of the Matching Facade Grant program also for $150,000 that will include original facade program along with the replacement of HVAC systems, fire detection/suppressions systems, equipment and security/video systems of up to a $20,000 matching program. The business can receive up to $20,000 for $40,000 worth of matching upgrades with this program.
An ordinance changing the penalties charged for unpaid sewer and water rents was passed. Unpaid water/sewer accounts will receive a penalty charge of 8 percent per annum on the first $1500 and 18 percent per annum on any amount above $1500. Twenty days after the due date a delinquent fee of $65 per bill will be applied.