*Now THIS should spark some interesting dialogue. A recent PEW Research Center study shows Black folks overall think people should be more careful with the language they use, so to not offend people. 59%) of the general population (all races) say ‘too many people are easily offended these days over the language that others use,’ according to Hannah Fingerhut on behalf of PEW.
“Fewer (39%) think ‘people need to be more careful about the language they use to avoid offending people with different backgrounds.’
But in the race breakdown, Fingerhut writes…
“Among blacks, 67% say people should be more careful with language to avoid offending people of different backgrounds, while just 30% say too many people are easily offended by language these days.
Just so you know. I’m with the 30%.
Among whites, opinions are reversed: 67% say too many are easily offended, compared with 32% who think more care should be taken to not offend others. . . .”
Within the Hispanic population, 49 percent say people should be more careful and 47 percent believe too many are easily offended.
While I am all for being appropriate, as a person who has spent much of her life in the field of communications, I realize that people don’t always say what they mean — nor mean what they say. Hell, I include myself in this. Writing allows me to be more ‘thoughtful’ but speaking off-the-cuff is something else. And it can be a lot of work to edit yourself each time you open your mouth. I believe we can tell when someone is being evil and inappropriate vs. someone less able to articulate effectively. This is why I think we have to look at this one-on-one — on an individual basis. Also, I don’t necessarily take what someone says about ONE thing, and apply it to how they might feel about ALL things. For example: I might tell you I hate the color blue. But that doesn’t have to mean I hate it on you.
So if I am forced to choose “overall” I’m with the 30%. I think that because we are all at different levels of frustration in our lives, what may upset one person on any given day; won’t necessarily upset another. Or, what may have offended that same person last week, rolls off his or her shoulder today, based on where that person is in their life.
But back to the research…A ‘political correctness’ debate, (which brings out the most raw emotions in people), shows most Americans believe people are too easily offended by what people say:
When it came to Blacks vs. whites, Black folk felt more people need to watch how they say things; while whites think Blacks are too sensitive.
And then there are the Democrats, divided here by race and gender, over whether folks are ‘easily offended’
So now, in writing, your thoughts are…