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A Guide to the Insensitive Things You Can’t Say Anymore, According to Duke University

By / 04.24.14



Political correctness is a weird, thing, isn’t it? Every person with half-a-brain knows they shouldn’t say these politically-insensitive things, but the last thing someone wants to hear is an organization or insitution reminding us that “IN ZERO CIRCUMSTANCES IS IT EVER OK TO SAY THESE THINGS.” Most mature adults got this message a long time ago. We don’t need to be reminded that “bitch” implies “feminity is inherently negative” or that saying “don’t be a pussy” claims a gender is inferior. It also makes people sound like neanderthals in their very basic human communications.

But most of us also don’t like having organizations of any kind jamming dogmatic priniciples of political-correctness down our throat just like most of us don’t like it when a stranger comes up to us on the street to ask “if you’ve heard the good news about our Lord and Savior Jeus Christ.”

That’s my only issue with Duke’s “You Don’t Say” campaign. As a society, we very much so need to evolve beyond using phrases like “that’s retarded” and “that’s gay” and “man up” so we’re not reinforcing negative messages about large groups with basic inter-person language. But will we? I’m not so sure. Freedom of speech is curbed, sure, but we still pretty much have the right to say whatever we want in our day-to-day language. It’s not criminal yet to call your buddy a “a little bitch” in jest, unless it’s in a truly harassing manner. So I question whether a preachy campaign about the political correctness of the phrase from a student group at Duke doing to stop people from saying it. If anything, I feel like it’s only going to only make the blood of the cavemen who actually say these things boil, causing them to veer closer and closer to them actually using it in a harassing manner just to see if they can get away with it.

Bottomline: Don’t think you can get away with saying offending things in jest, Bros. You can’t. Someone, somewhere will call you out on it.

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TAGSdon't say these thingsduke university
Brandon Wenerd
About Brandon Wenerd... Brandon Wenerd is BroBible's senior editor, guru of @brotips, and director of strategic partnerships. He joined BroBible in the fall of 2009 after graduating from Penn State. When he’s not writing, Brandon enjoys fishing, Phish, Philly sports, Dewey Beach, supporting live music, hot sauce, and beer. E-mail him with post ideas and news tips:

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