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Monday
May022016

My Balls have Shrunk

Not physically, but metaphorically.

I used to write interesting stuff here, some of it controversial.

I would often try to act as Devil’s Advocate and get a discussion going.

Not anymore. For better or worse I mellowed out. Looking at this old post from five years ago. This was one of the turning points:

Title: Political Correctness 

Texas A & M has an annual contest for the best definition of a contemporary expression. This year (2011) it was "political correctness." And here's the winner

"Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."

I hate Political correctness, it is a form of censorship. It makes people afraid to speak their mind, or to even mention certain subject matter.

Yesterday I wrote a piece which I intended to be a discussion around a podcast, “Are urban cyclists elitist snobs.”

In my view cyclists are a minority, and if a small element of our minority behaves badly, we all get smeared with the same shit stick.  

I was stupid enough to draw an analogy with other minority groups, namely people of color and gays. I should have known better, and I should not have even attempted to pick up that turd.

This morning there was a comment that suggested I was racist and anti-gay. My first reaction was to start composing a comment defending myself. Then I thought fuck it, why should I have to defend myself against something that is entirely untrue?

I deleted the piece along with all comments. Maybe I acted a little hasty, but I clicked “Delete” and it is gone. Forever as far as I am concerned.

I may not have done the right thing, but I did the “Safe” thing. A suggestion like that can quickly grow legs and with the help social media I could lose my reputation overnight, and all these years of writing here would be right down the toilet. All because of one little politically incorrect turd.

End of article.

 

So there you have it. My Balls have Shrunk. Maybe it is old age, but I just want to live a quiet life. Social media is a powerful thing, but it is killing free speech. It is hardly fair when the critics can remain anonymous, and someone like me is writing under their real name.

I may not be as interesting as I once was, but at least I’m still here.

 

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Reader Comments (19)

I agree with your view on PC. It is a form of terrorism and is succeeding. The first amendment, both parts, are being eroded in American culture just like the second and nearly all of the others.

The founding fathers of this country predicted the erosion as a result of specific events and abandonment of values which clearly have come to pass. It is sad the experiment of creating a country, with a governmental system based in individual inalienable rights and freedom, will not be completed.

May 2, 2016 | Unregistered Commentersjx426

There's a reactionary movement against political correctness happening in America today. Trump's popularity, Andrew Dice Clay returning to the spotlight, increasing mockery for the shrill blue-haired college students talking about "intersectionality" (the Olympics of oppression).

The 2nd wave of PC is dying under its own weight. They're eating their own. Gay men are no longer welcome in some PC circles, now that everyone sorta likes them.

Parts of Europe, on the other hand, are jailing people and taking away their children for "hate speech", like if you mention that maybe sorta kinda unchecked Muslim immigration might possibly not be optimal for all parties involved.

But a reaction is happening and growing stronger. So f*ck urban cyclists. And f*ck mountain bikers, brompton riders, old retrogrouches, hipsters on adventure bikes. F*ck jewish cyclists and muslim cyclists and gay cyclists and christian cyclists and redneck cyclists and black cyclists and genderfluid asexual androgenous multiracial cyclists

May 2, 2016 | Unregistered Commentersteve

That my friend is having balls!!

moulton #1834

May 2, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMike C

When I first started hearing anti-cyclist rhetoric in the media, about 2009 or so, it rang familiar because I had heard it before in the '80s and '90s about Gay people. The details were different but the tone, the demonization and the (lack of) logic was the same. The damned if you do and damned if you don't rhetoric was the same. Scaring parents into being fearful for their children was the same. The belief in all sorts of strange motives attributed to them was the same.
It seems whenever a disenfranchised minority gets a few crumbs thrown their way it rubs some the wrong way. They feel that the "natural order of things" has been disrupted.
Feeling that Black people should stay at the back of the bus and not just sit anywhere is not any different than feeling that cyclists should stay in the margins and not take the lane nor have their own path to go on.
I guess as a species we really haven't evolved much past our medieval ancestors who could be led to believe in goblins or demons to explain the unusual. Add to that those in power who use demonizing minorities to further their own wealth.

May 2, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJames

I feel the opposite, I think, as I have aged, my BALLS have become bigger, As a nipper in England I was always a shy reserved youngster. Now at 83 I feel I have nothing to loose anymore. I belong to the Classic Rendezvous Bike group and I guess I have quite a reputation for speaking my mind, stirring things up.I know many of the members are sick of me and my rants. BUT WHAT I have to lose? Political correctness? If you do not agree then DON'T BLOODY AGREE! Why care what others think? This is, OR WAS a free country. Why put up with things you don't like? I intend to live what ever time I have left enjoying life. Maybe when I am gone they will say "He was an cantankerous old bugger but you knew where he stood" AMEN!

May 2, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterjohn crump

i'll admit that as i age, my filters grow thinner. i'm over 60 and i tend to say what's on my mind when i choose to speak, but...

If one wishes to be a lout, then one should be a lout, but not complain whine and wail against "political correctness" when others point them out as louts.

There's a fine line between being "politically incorrect" and being an (edit)hole. Common civility and good manners should not be confused with political correctness. i don't particularly care if someone says something politically "incorrect," but i cannot abide a loutish imbecile (BTW, that's an archaic and politically incorrect term for a person of limited intellectual capacity.)

May 2, 2016 | Unregistered Commentermike w.

Its not censorship at all. If one of your readers feels that what you said was racist, they have every right to express their feelings. If you want to delete their opinion , go ahead. BUT remember, sometimes we may not see ourselves as others see us and in some cases they may be doing us a favour by pointing something out which we did not consider. I know it's happened to me more than once.

May 2, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterayjaydee

So stop looking to Social Media for validation.

You, Dave, already gave the reason you have this blog. You aren't doing it seeking confirmation and recognition, and support or Kudos for what you write. Stop letting it turn into that by defending your words.

As songwriter Pfeifer Scott (and the Editors of Life) wrote:

"Don't Let the Weasels Win"

Steve Farner

May 2, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSteve

And the world is diminished.

Dave, I'd have like to have read your comments. Maybe I'm getting old and cranky, too, but I can read an opinion I disagree with (sometimes even one of yours!) without tarring the writer. We disagree; is that so bad?

May 3, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPat Lamb

please research the "Frankfurt School" to get the fundamental origins of the current philosophy/ideology of multiculturalism and political correctness from which this current iteration of "progressiveness" comes from. Combined with useful idiocy of largely ignorant politicians this current trend will ,I predict, end with the demise of our western culture/society or a violent backlash, which I personally would prefer.

May 3, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterzoltan

Mel Brooks explained in his great treatise on PC thought,
"Blazing Saddles", that PC begins when you let the Irish in.

My theory is PC exists since the Internet killed irony,
sarcasm and dry humor in general.

May 3, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBubba Maistre

Balls!You need balls! :)
PC culture has undermined public discourse to the point of absurdity.It divides people into "offenders and " victims."Any possible avenue of communicating ceases because the (usually)self-appointed "victim" has run to the equivalent of Mommy or Daddy to complain how mistreated they are.Sticks and stones,etc,is discouraged.Identity politics have trumped any thoughst of actually stopping and considering what or why the"offender" said what he/she did.
Shame.It turns otherwise sane people into idiotic robotic reacters.
About the Frankfurt School,it seem s from what I read on Wiki just a minute ago that it seems that many on the far right have laid blame on them for the political correctness trend.I need to do more reading.
Dave,speak your mind and let the chips fall where they may.As John Crump says life is too short for BS!
Cheers!
,Joe

May 4, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

Here's perhaps how you should have written it:
"As a white middle-class hetero male it's not often I get to feel like a hard-done-by minority, which is why I love cycling. It gives me an insight to some full-blown Aussie bigotry..."
Charlie Pickering, The Weekly, 22 July 2015

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I7gE19uX2ZA

May 4, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterTony

Not you too.

People being offended by people being offended is so bizarre.

Basically it's white men being told racism, misogyny etc. are unacceptable and for they find this as censorship. You can say what you want, but I don't have to like it and I can tell you that. You wanting people to stop reacting negatively to your speech is exactly the form of censorship you're talking about.

Some food for thought.
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/jan/28/pc-culture-freedom-of-speech-freedom-to-be-offended

May 5, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPatrick

You poor old white guys. There there fellas.

May 6, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterDave

rightt on patrick! and as for zoltan hoping for an old whiteman backlash!! lol!

May 8, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterayjaydee

Yes and no. One person's political correctness is another's censorship. That person's freedom of speech may be another's persecution.

Thirty years ago, I would have said "one man's". But that's sexist - or at least many people would perceive it as such. In a way, being PC is being sensitive to the perceptions of others.

It's a difficult path to negotiate, but it starts with the belief that all people are of equal value and deserve equal opportunities. OTOH, it doesn't mean someone 5' tall deserves a spot in the NBA. We all have abilities and disabilities - just not as many as society delivers.

May 9, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSteveP

Dave: "Cyclists get persecuted just like blacks and gays"
Public: "Uhhh...... maybe you don't know what persecution is..."
Dave: "GODDAMNED POLITALLY CORRECT SONS-OF-BITCHES, I'M TAKING MY TOYS AND GOING HOME! SOCIAL MEDIA IS KILLING FREE SPEECH!!"

May 13, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterTony

1994 Winter Olympics, ABC Commentator, after Dan Jansen slipped and lost the 500 meter race:

"Was the ice slippery...?"

Dan's coach, Peter Mueller succinctly replies:

"Ice is always slippery."
And he turns and walks away...1,000 meters to go.

May 14, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSteve

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