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Archive for the ‘Social & political commentary’ Category

Socially Correct Holiday Season Slogans

Let’s put out to pasture the term ‘political correctness’!

Not only has this expression increasingly fallen out of favour based on its accumulated baggage, built on decades of use, but the word political doesn’t stand up anymore as encompassing enough to cover the inexorable intrusion of social media and expression.

Therefore, let’s henceforth categorize any relevant references under the theoretically broader, more modern term of ‘social correctness’.

That said, ‘social correctness’ to some extent itself is an oxymoron.  To be truly social implies a certain amount of undefined freedom; but then, correctness implies some adherence to rules or conventions.  Therefore, while s.c. is equipped to be more current than p.c., the correctness badge is sometimes ambiguous.

Now that we are into December, celebration of the Christmas season and the New Year is gearing up in both symbol and psyche.

Yet, controversy continues to hold its own.  This week in parts of North America, the 1940s song “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”, a popular, albeit borderline, seasonal standard mainly for the older crowd, has been banned from airplay due to some of its suggestive lyrics.  Those who feel the issue is covered in social correctness are applauding, others with a more historical perspective are shaking their heads.  After all, we have urban tangents of music with lyrics which are, at best, provocative, but which seem acceptable to some to be played anytime of the year.

This, of course, does not even delve into the wider debate of using the word and image of ‘Christmas’ itself.  While a wide swath of the population continues to see no basis for concern, except for its historical legitimacy being threatened, segments of the s.c. crowd continue to tread otherwise.

So, where do we stand, now and looking forward?  Perhaps it’s wise to have some adaptive expressions at the ready – for instance…

  • ‘Tis the season to be prepared to laugh at any tastefully designed, non-discriminatory anecdotes
  • Peace on earth, to the extent it is permissible under the applicable, jurisdictional regime in power
  • Warmest wishes for the holidays, although with the impact of global warming, aka climate change, this should be increasingly unavoidable
  • Sleigh bells ring, so it’s safe to assume holiday season no-gooders won’t be depending on them
  • Wishing you a warm and cozy Christmas, as long as you restrict your burning of fossil or flora fuels
  • Let music fill the air, to the extent the lyrics and melody are distinguishable, or at least don’t drown out our senses
  • From our home to yours, since we borrowed all that stuff from you, which we hadn’t returned yet
  • Greetings of the season, allowing that this overwhelming era of communications and marketing have blurred the lines inexorably
  • Let us celebrate with ‘wonder’ and ‘joy’, in the knowledge that their meaning may be under siege somewhere by children growing up with these names
  • Wishing you the best for the New Year to make up for the roller-coaster twists and turns of this one

Of course, the list is as ever-expanding as our collective categorizing will take us.

Where Can I Get a GPS Tattoo?

We have become party to a panoply of leisure travel destinations, embellished by baby boomers entering the retirement lifestyle mode in ever-greater numbers.  With this comes the need to satisfy an ever-widening array of interests or concerns, while communicating with a range of cultures.

There is an abundance of information in both printed and on-line forms, not to mention anecdotal tips one may encounter.  Books in full size to pocket size offer flexibility and quick access for travelers on the move, who do not want to be dependent on connecting devices.  (Of course, many younger trip takers prefer the latter.) (more…)

Reserved Seating Not Needed Here

Our most recent taking in a movie, at our local cinema house, exposed a new wrinkle in the ticket buying experience.  Notwithstanding that my spouse and I were attending a less than half-filled show in the afternoon, we had to select our seats in advance, like choosing concert or airline tickets on a laptop screen.

Apparently, this has become de rigueur at least at some local screens in the last month or so.  One would have thought some warning or notification, if only for public relations sake, would have been justified. (more…)

Facing New Developments

Many of us have memories about tracts of land encountered over the years.  They looked natural, bucolic, perhaps even dreamy – largely because they were undeveloped.

Numerous city boundaries are examples of once-upon-a-time urban/rural landscape divides, where, subsequently, developments have caused diffusion of transition points; the ripple impact keeps expanding, so as to permanently blur any clear sense of dividing lines. (more…)

TOP 10 Election Aftermath Realities

Among the truisms of government elections, and candidates’ behaviours, are that many of them are predicated on massage or sublimation.

Such as in the afterglow of Ontario’s provincial election June 7th(more…)

The Price of Being Outspoken

Many are those whose careers have been negatively impacted by being considered too outspoken. Especially when such speech rattles the cages of those in power, there may be consequences disproportionate to a particular issue raised.

Many examples through history illustrate this conundrum.  We don’t have to look past our current age to see this conflict play out. (more…)

Whatever Happened to Esperanto?   

Some of us are old enough to remember that, before the end of the last century, there seemed to be momentum from supporters of Esperanto, promoting it as a universal language for our world.  Conceptually, this still sounds like a laudable goal.

Deservedly or not, nowadays one seldom (if ever) hears stories about it having impact. (more…)