First of all let me say that I find the use of racist terms abhorrent and personally offensive. Racism and everything that goes along with it is a cancer within our society. That being said, it is ridiculous and dangerous to try to regulate against it. I am not talking about discrimination or affirmative action here, but free speech and thought. I am talking about the city of New York outlawing the “N” word. See this story for more details.
It is a massive waste of time and the people’s money to pass laws and referendums that have no weight or consequence. And yes, I feel the same way about the recent one in Congress. There is too much serious work to be done to waste time on symbolic gestures. And legislatures need to remember that it is the tax payer’s money they are wasting on the grand performances. While children starve around the world and home need rebuilding on the Gulf Coast, millions of dollars gets flushed down the collective toilet of grandiose statements through legislation.
But just as importantly this is another example of a group of people trying to control you. In this case it is people trying to control your speech. Makes you wonder about that entire free speech thing doesn’t it? Language is a powerful thing. Those who wield it need to do so with great care and consideration. At the same time, to arbitrarily limit or ban certain words is absurd. Not only is it impossible at the base level, but it simply adds more power to those words in the end. And, this is the most important point, who am I to decide what words you can use to express yourself. Ban words because the are offensive? That takes us directly to banning collections of words – such as books. And that leads to the banning of the speakers of the words – which leads to the suppression and imprisonment of dissidents. A very slippery slope from which there is no easy return.