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Dr Muriel Newman

Politically Correct Madness

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News-2-200117The mainstream media did themselves no favours earlier this month, with their handling of the ‘he said, she said’ row between the ‘Mad Butcher’, Sir Peter Leitch, and Waiheke Islander, Lara Bridger. Their dispute over whether comments he made were ‘racist’, dominated the news, with the Herald even running it as a front page lead story.

What Sir Peter described as ‘light-hearted banter’, occurred at the Stonyridge Vineyard on Waiheke Island, where he says he warned her group to be careful of drinking and driving because there were lots of police around. She responded she was Tangata Whenua and could do what she liked – to which he replied that Waiheke is a ‘white man’s island’ too.

When he was informed that she had taken offence, he says he apologised unreservedly.

The fact that the press dined out on this story for days on end is an indictment – and a sad reflection on the state of the media today. The demise of quality journalism is one of the main reasons the industry is in decline. This incident served to reinforce the view that they are becoming – to use media commentator Brian Edwards’ description  – “trash tabloids”, with a focus on ‘gossip, celebrities, and sensation’.

The Herald’s decision to publish paparazzi photos of John and Bronagh Key on holiday in Hawaii, just a few days later – invading their privacy without any mitigating news interest – reinforces the view of Brian Edwards.

Sadly for the mainstream media, they don’t seem to realise that they are now on the same slippery slope that led to the demise of the New Zealand Truth newspaper. Unless they return to the standards that were once the hallmark of their profession, they will find their readers will increasingly abandon them to find their news elsewhere.

The Mad Butcher story also serves to remind us of a destructive intolerance to free speech that has now pervaded society. At one time, you could call a spade a spade – and if you inadvertently offended someone, then such was life. But these days, the rise of political correctness means that if you say something that social activists consider to be wrong, you can be mercilessly hounded, ridiculed and humiliated, your career threatened and your reputation ruined.

We saw this last year when the executive chairman of Saatchi & Saatchi, New Zealander Kevin Roberts, was forced to resign following a storm of criticism from feminist groups after he challenged a prevailing view about diversity. When asked by a reporter whether there was a problem with a lack of gender diversity in the advertising industry, his response “not in my view”, was not what the feminists wanted to hear, and the barrage of ugly protest led to him stepping down.

Massey University Chancellor Chris Kelly suffered the same fate. Discussing changes to their veterinary degree course, the former veterinarian explained that there was a high fallout rate of male students, but with female vets taking time off from their careers to raise a family, it was resulting in a shortage of vets especially in rural areas: “When I went through vet school, many years ago, it was dominated by men; today it’s dominated by women. That’s fine, but the problem is one woman graduate is equivalent to two-fifths of a full-time equivalent vet throughout her life because she gets married and has a family, which is normal. So, though we’re graduating a lot of vets, we’re getting a high fallout rate later on.”

Feminists dived in to the attack, twisting his comments and claiming they were sexist and insulting to women. That’s not what he intended, of course, but nevertheless a week later he resigned.

Political Correctness is being used by vested interest groups to force new norms of thought and behaviour onto society. Nowadays if you are not “sensitive” enough in embracing values such as “tolerance” and “diversity”, then you will be aggressively attacked and stigmatised by activist critics – including in the media. In seeking to impose a uniformity of thought and behaviour onto society, the roots of political correctness are totalitarian.

This week’s NZCPR Guest Commentator, Dr Samuel Gregg, the Director of Research at the US think tank the Acton Institute, describes the originator of these ideas – the Italian philosopher Antonio Gramsci – as the most dangerous socialist in history. He explains that while the traditional socialist battle was economic – ‘liberating’ the working class by taking control of the means of production and distribution – Gramsci’s focus was on controlling culture:

“Still a Marxist, he viewed art, literature, education, and all its other elements through the jaundiced lens of a class struggle. But he realized that these things didn’t just respond to political and economic power; they also produced it. So if the Left wants to win, it must seize these things first, get control of the ‘cultural means of production’. Gramsci insisted that Marxists had underestimated the importance of culture-forming institutions such as the media, universities, and churches in deciding whether the Left or the Right would gain control.”

According to Dr Gregg, the key to controlling culture is to manipulate language by changing its meaning: “Seemingly benign ideas such as ‘justice’ and ‘due process’, must be exposed as cynical bourgeois ploys that serve to disguise systematic injustices. Truth is no longer important, for truth is just a ruling class construct. What matters is the pursuance and maintenance of power, so that millions of media-consumers and thousands of university students can continue being enlightened about the hidden structures of privilege.”

This is the thinking behind the PC attacks on the likes of Kevin Roberts, Chris Kelly, and Peter Leitch – their comments were taken out of context by activists and portrayed as prejudice in order to advance their agenda.

This is also the thinking that underpins ‘identity politics’ – or identity liberalism as it is often called – where the struggle for social justice has moved from its traditional focus on the working class, to the so-called ‘oppressed’ groups in society centred on gender, race, and sexuality. Anyone who dares to criticise an increase in the rights and privileges for these groups will be attacked by modern day socialists and labelled “racist”, “xenophobe”, “sexist”, or “bigot”.

In fact, this was the strategy adopted by Hilary Clinton during her campaign for the US Presidency. But when she called Donald Trump’s supporters “deplorables”, she went too far:  “To just be grossly generalistic, you can put half of Trump supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right? Racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic, you name it.”

Many commentators believe that her insults, claiming these voters were “irredeemable” and “not America”, marked a turning point in the election campaign.

There is now a growing chorus around the world for the ‘left’ to end its obsession with identity politics. As Professor Mark Lilla of Columbia University explained in the New York Times, “One of the many lessons of the recent presidential election campaign is that the age of identity liberalism must be brought to an end.”

He believes that Hillary Clinton focussed too much on diversity on the campaign trail, calling out explicitly to African-American, Latino, LGBT and women voters at every stop: “This was a strategic mistake. If you are going to mention groups in America, you had better mention all of them. If you don’t, those left out will notice and feel excluded. Which, as the data show, was exactly what happened with the white working class and those with strong religious convictions. Fully two-thirds of white voters without college degrees voted for Donald Trump, as did over 80 percent of white evangelicals.”

Professor Lilla says that identity liberalism as a political device has spectacularly failed. He believes, “National politics in healthy periods is not about ‘difference’, it is about commonality. And it will be dominated by whoever best captures Americans’ imaginations about our shared destiny… Identity politics, by contrast, is largely expressive, not persuasive. Which is why it never wins elections — but can lose them.”

With its focus on group rights, identity politics is leading to a rejection of the fundamental concept of equality, fought for by human rights campaigners such as Martin Luther King: “I look to a day when people will not be judged by the colour of their skin, but by the content of their character”. Character appears to be of little regard to modern day activists; to them it’s about skin colour, gender, sexual orientation – anything but the universality of character.

This change is largely being driven by ‘Affirmative Action’, whereby special state privilege is awarded to members of groups claiming to be the victims of discrimination.

But John Moore, who writes for the Liberation blog run by Dr Bryce Edwards of Otago University, calls identity politics an “elitist scam”, since the state largesse that flows to groups claiming to be marginalised ends up in the hands of the elites who run the groups, rather than those in need: “Modern social-liberalism – in the form of identity politics – has been exposed as an elitist scam. Gender politics, LGBTQI+ movements, and tino rangatiratanga struggles were all presented as a way to alleviate the poverty, oppression and discrimination of those at the bottom of society. Instead these ideologies have only acted to elevate… an elite of those from subjugated sectors of society.”

His call for New Zealand’s political ‘left’ to abandon identity politics is echoed by Simon Wilson, the former editor of Metro Magazine: “The identity politics debate is like a cancer eating out the strength and heart of the centre left”. He believes that if the Labour Party wants to win the next election, they need to “focus on things that matter to everyone”.

The reality is that unless the political left abandons identity politics – and political correctness – they risk generating a cultural backlash from Kiwis who are sick and tired of being vilified and sneered at by left wing activists whenever they speak their mind.

With a growing feeling that political correctness is out of control, it is clearly time to rein it in.

Firstly, the fact that the Human Rights Act makes it illegal to insult anyone in New Zealand is being used by social justice activists to justify their attacks on the free expression of others. Under Sections 61 and 131 of the Human Rights Act, it is unlawful to promote anything that is threatening, abusive, or insulting. And while the Human Rights Commission claims that the threshold for complaints is very high, the penalty is, nevertheless, a criminal conviction, with imprisonment for up to 3 months or a fine of up to $7,000.

The campaign by the Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy against “soft racism” has also made the situation worse. Nowadays, it seems that if you say almost anything at all about race – including calling for equal rights – you are accused of racism.

It is clearly time that the word “insulting” was removed from the Human Rights Act, but in reality, to knock back the political correctness that is stultifying society, we need to go further and abolish the whole Act, since we already have a Bill of Rights to protect our freedoms.

In addition, all forms of affirmative action, whether in laws, regulations, policies, programmes, or procedures, should be hunted down and eliminated.

And all government agencies pushing political correctness and identity politics should be dismantled – including the Human Rights Commission, the Ministry for Women, the Ministry for Pacific Peoples, and the Ministry for Maori Development.

The media too have a role to play by recognising when they are being manipulated by the PC brigade and rejecting their advances in favour of common sense.

It is surely time that New Zealanders took back control of the country from the social justice elites who have held a gun to our heads for far too long.


Do you believe political correctness is out of control in New Zealand?


*Poll comments are posted below.


*All NZCPR poll results can be seen in the Archive.

Click to view x 120


Freedom of speech is being undermined by this PC madness. Gifford
We are producing some very narrow minded young people. No possibility of shades of grey in a discussion. Ann
NZ has over the years become to liberal to the left and over politically correct on a lot of issues. Wayne
Political correctness has gone so far as to allow racism towards white people and sexism towards men. Also the right to freedom of expression seems to be reserved for the left. Time for the New Zealand Herald to stop allowing racist articles by Lizzie Marvelly to be published too. Sean
It permeates all of the comments made whether they are tongue in cheek or not, ans is harming our times rather than enhancing them. Rob
I’ve thought for years it’s stupid & I’ve had to bite my tongue when I’ve had thoughts that I had to keep to myself. True the media is one of the main culprits. Cindy
It has been for some time. Trevor
Dictionary meaning of ‘insulting’, ‘to treat with contempt’. Not the intention in a reasoned discussion. Jill
Isn’t PCness born out of division and all constituents are attached to liberal indignations BLISSES wether they like it or not, just as there was never a PARTNERSHIP. This so – called PARTNERSHIP is only made up of divisive hissy fits or guilt trips of the past. The security of ONE NATION or the European agreement was that all NZers are queens subjects as 1law4all which is the common denominator between the addition of division or the trend of two nations ownership and the multiplication of ONE NATION as bipartism in ARROWgants. No mediated statements there, just questions from a long bow. Kelly
Most definitely. Lynnette
It’s abnormal subnormal and restricts the ability for people to say what they really want to say, lets all get back to straight talk and all the cultural junk being invented by dimwits be banned. James
PC is not only out of control in NZ alone. This cancer has become a world wide phenomenon. Spreading PC is nothing but an agenda to fragment and ultimately destroy society as we know it. The age old rule of divide and conquer is alive and well and the PC brigade does not even realize that ultimately they too–in the end– will be victimized by their own agendas. PC does corrupt and eventually exterminate all remaining traces of common sense, the ability to discuss, debate and allow constructive criticism and free speech. All this for the sake of turning whole populations into a amorphous mass without any ability of independent thought.To undo this unholy trend we need people at the helm who have not been corrupted by PC, have no fear to tell all these PC spinsters to get lost andrepresent these folks in out society who have not lost the ability to call a spade a spade. Michael
It is truly manic what these trendy lefties are doing and the garbage is being led by the MSM. Will they wake up when the last newspaper reader says “enough.” Ronmac
We are so sick of cultural marxism, social engineering and racial identity politics. Where is the leader who will call this out, campaign to win the election and change this PC environment as in the American(Trump) election? Monica
What a great article. Thank you for your honest explanation of what’s happening our free speech.the academic left are taking control of our society. Drain the swamp in our govt councils, schools, osh, its all about them with them with their heads in the public trough. Making continuous rules and regulations to keep themselves in work. Morrie
Totally agree. Norman
Absolutely 100 % Glenn
We must stand firm and reject PC speak outright! Michael
I agree with Muriel Newman. Mark
Bring back common sense and one nation one same common law for all. Andy
Political correctness is not a language tolerance issue. It is and always has been an ideology control issue using language as a tool for propaganda and intimidation , not of words but of ideas. Foul language is unwanted but free speech and the free exchange of ideas cannot be legally inhibited without destroying our genuine identity. Richard
Absolutely. It has got to the stage where it is putting yourself at risk to voice opinion opinions about any people or culture. Bryan
To the point of being bloody ridiculous. Max
Political correctness is akin to a pervasive disease that knows no bounds and continues to eat away at society. Garth
A brilliant commentary on this subject – well done! John
We need to return to the times when one had the right to freely express one’s opinion without fear of being unjustly vilified. Ron
That insanity has been out of control for at least a couple of decades I believe. Steve
An interesting article.. spoiled by the extremism of the the last 5 little sections. Rochelle
OMG .. so out of control! Now we have “Casual Racism” to add to the list of PC bullsh*t. Maddi
It has been out of control for a long time now and we can thank the last Labour government for making matters infinitely worse. There was a time when we got along with each other pretty well and people weren’t frightened to speak frankly and voice an honest opinion. Thanks to political correctness gone mad, we have now been polarised into an intolerant and racist society where activist academics, assisted by the brainwashed and abysmally stupid media, attempt to manipulate how we should think and behave. The only thing George Orwell got wrong was the date! Martin
PC is self evident,- enough said! John RL
I have seen it coming for a long time. In the 17 years I’ve been in NZ I’ve seen the Herald move from a centrist paper to noticeably apologist of the ‘social justice’ causes you mention. More and more of their columnists are spouting ‘minority’ propaganda, which is too often disparaging, if not directly, then by implication, of white males. Colin
Definitely! I agree with your comments about abolishing some of these ministries. Bryan
Destroying our way of life as it used to be. Margaret
Gone mad but how do we start reversing it. Albyn
the bias towards anyone who speaks out is extreme and the average man in the street has no say and is not allowed to speak his or her mind on topic relating to N Z. Melva
Progressively getting worse! Peter
Political correctness is just one of the many things that is overdue for correction or realignment or whatever other PC term that one wishes to use. As to papers, and the New Zealand Herald in particular, many have long since ceased being newspapers and have become opinion papers. In the case of the Herald, it is in my view now teetering on the edge of becoming a trivia paper. That was perhaps predictable with the Herald’s acquisition years ago by the Reilly group and the Herald now seems to declined into the mould of the British gutter press. Peter
It seems to me that if you have a white face you have to be very careful about what you say even if it is meant as a joke, but if you are Maori you can say what ever you like. John
Most people are now too scared to publicly air reasonable contrary views on race, LGBT and like issues for fear of being pilloried by the media. Ted
The whole PC movement in New Zealand is getting out of control and the way it is going it is only going to get worse. Digby
Will anything be done about it? Simon
It is good to read an article confirming it. Terry
Get rid of all ox rubbish like Maori seats Race Relations conciliator. Maori everything we need to all be Kiwis. Greg
Your comments ion Political Correctness are absolutely correct and beautifully made.thank you for such a great piece. Frank
Absolutely, at the expense of common sense, truth and integrity. Kevin
PC BS is everywhere. Even at my work. Philip
As mentioned in your article we are becoming a nation of peoples too scared to cast an opinion for fear of retribution!! Mal.
Common sense and tolerance seem to have been buried in an avalanch of pc protestations. Margaret
Absolutely. Laurel
Common sense seems to have gone out the door! Theodorus
Absolutely insane. Kevin
It is used as a weapon by small minded people or crafty politicians. Noel
The Maori “elite”, such as iwi leaders, do very well from government handouts. The trickle down effect is not working, so that funding does not reach those who need it most. National should cut its ties with the iwi leaders group and not accede to their demands for more and more. Further, the Waitangi Tribunal should be wound up. Its findings seem to be based increasingly on manufactured historical “evidence” which which makes Maori look like victims. It’s time to treat everyone equally, regardless of skin colour or descent, as Dr Martin Luther King said. Until we do this we are not “one people”, but divided. And the division seems to be increasing – to our detriment. Laurence
It makes cowards of us all. Sarah
The PC brigade are way out of control and every kiwi has a chance to change this in the next election by voting for the party who is prepared to make the change. Make no mistake such a oarty will not be committing political suicide…in fact just the opposite. Look at Brexit and Donald Trump and look forward ti a similar result in France shortly. Doug
Without doubt. Peter
It has been for years. Perfect example is Don Brash’s Orewa speak calling for equality for all New Zealnders being labelled “racist” – as it has on numerous occasions since. It was quite the opposite! Laurie
It is completely out of control. Shank
Definitely and totally fed up. Cecelia
Yes, most definitely! Joseph
Absolutely out of control. If something is not done to rectify this state of affairs then democracy and comment are dead and we would be headed for a totalitarian society and country with free speech a dead issue. We need politicians and people who will counteract the problem we are descending into. Brian
Totally!!!!! But whilst we have so many liberal weirdo’s and academic twits controlling us it will only get worse. Alan
It has been out of control for years but now more people are aware. Paul
Lefties need to be reigned in. Their use of PC is a load of crap! Jim
What a load of shit we are at today. If you can’t say what you think then what is life all about. As for these fucking Maoris who think that they own the country, well its time for all to tell them to just fuck off and go and live in the islands in their caves and go back to wearing their grass skirts. Time for the country to say we have had enough. Dream over. Graham
PC has been out of control for a number of years and all the lefties and Maori take advantage of the term and promote it further. Ken
Had enough. Mebel
Political correctness is definitely the tool used by the left to silence freedom of speech for everyone. It is absolutely Marxist and plainly aimed at destroying the freedom of the people who live in Western Democracies. Such a Trojan horse injected into any society will decay its centre, destroy it’s traditional social structures and values and lead to a feeling of frustration and hopelessness among the people who create private wealth and independence. It also erodes the necessity for personal responsibility by targeting and supporting the lower levels of society and telling them continuously that it is not their fault, whatever these sad people think is their problem. It is always the fault of the boss or the evil white middleclass men or the colonialist “oppressors” or whatever other nonsensical term the Trojan horse subversives, be they Marxists, extremist feminists, misguided radicals or just the stupid who have no idea about anything, choose to invent or cling to. Dianna
And how!! Jan
I have long lamented the pervasive power of political correctness in NZ through my blogs with two on the subject this month alone. Living on Waiheke and knowing Sir Peter Leitch personally it was a natural topic to choose to show the absurdity of it all http://www.joholmes.com/blog/peter-leitch-racism-row-shows-ugly-side-of-generation-snowflake The other under attack was Sir Bob Jones for speaking the truth about beggars http://www.joholmes.com/blog/sir-bob-jones-accused-of-racism-over-beggar-comments Jo
PC goes against what most Kiwis would identify as “Normal”! Many of these PC groups need to “get over themselves” and get out there and enjoy life while they still have wellness along with a healthy, fit body! Bruce
The Brexit and Trump results were a vote against democracy itself, mainly by uninformed, disgruntled protest voters who wanted to hit back against the usual government establishment, and who seem to have forgotten that no matter who you vote for, the government gets in. Many people feel relief that 2016 will soon be over, but now in 2017 Trump has become the establishment, while in March the UK will invoke article 50. If Trump implements any of the policies he promised, he will alienate half of America; if he doesn%u2019t implement all of them, he will alienate the other half. If the uk does start the process to leave the EU, it faces years of hard negotiation and political and economic turmoil. In both the uk and America, 2016 might come to seem the last good year they ever had! In New Zealand, our democracy is being attacked by the institutional racism of unelected appointees and favouring Maori over non-Maori. Be in no doubt: this is due to one thing only, and that is the evil nonsense of political correctness. Political correctness is used to attack democracy here in New Zealand and in the UK and Europe. PC is ‘The Emperors New Clothes’ and is actually just nonsensical bullshit, so unsurprisingly nobody understands it, but too many are intimidated by it. If we replace political correctness with good old-fashioned common sense, it will perhaps be possible to save democracy in New Zealand otherwise NOT. In America and the UK, democracy is threatened by anti-establishment sentiment, whereas here the threat is from public indifference. Does New Zealand, America, or the UK want to become like Russia? Because that is the future if we do not stand up NOW for democracy. Complacent, blinkered New Zealanders need to understand what a disaster it would be to lose our democracy. We seem to be more interested in saving dolphins. In both cases, democracy and dolphins, once they are gone, they are gone forever. We need to WAKE UP! G
Yes and how, never mind, the US have a real man in charge now and he will start the ball rolling on all this PC stuff. Athol
The media has given political correct activists/terrorists so much space and an avenue for outlet that it is now not worth buying a paper or watching the news. Wayne
‘Is’ thanks to media over hyping and has been for some time NZ is way more racially divided today than it ever has been, is this ‘progress’ ? Bryan
I ask, How come there are only ‘racists’ from the Caucasions among us ? I have yet to see a news article declaring one of our ethnic peoples to be ‘Racist’, (except, of course, Winston Peters, who is chronically racist to those aforementioned ‘ethnic’ groups). Political Correctness, according to H.S.Truman (Past USA President), “Is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, promoted by a sick main-stream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a piece of shit by the clean end”. MervB..
So called values have replaced morality. Whose values are being protected? Certainly not those of ordinary decent law abiding citizens. Anon
My son left uni some years ago with a mild politically correct attitude which subsequently change once he entered into the cut and thrust of the ‘real’ world. Unfortunately some people do not seem able to emerge from that view of life. Barry
I am a firm believer that when Political Correctness combined with Occupational Safety & Health Policies over-ride common sense then the flame of eternal hope and mans ability to evolve naturally are…..EXTINGUISHED. Wayne
All one need say now is “Ooh, you’ve hurt my feelings and immediately after that follows such things as (you add the “ism” bit) insult about race, gender bias,, culture, language, concealment of the face, whatever. Its damned disgraceful that we are lurching into the 21st Century with hard held beliefs that belong with the Dodo and believing Gods handed down rules to certain people or that mountains have feelings!! Steve
I hope you are sending your article to every at least right-leaning MP, forget the lefties. If the present Government takes no action in fixing this there will almost certainly be a “spring” backlash which undoubtedly could worsen the situation if the lefties win the upcoming election. It is definitely time for a change, but hopefully from the ‘right’ side. Alan
Absolutely. Unfortunately the PC brigade are milking the current legislation for all its worth, to the detriment of others as we saw with the Mad butcher tirade at Waiheke. Incidentally, I don’t recall reading in the Herald, or elsewhere, Ms Bridger’s comments that “she could do what she liked” which is really at the heart of the problem. The current political direction has created complete arrogance from some groups. An overhaul is well and truly overdue. Chris
I have felt for a long time the media has a lot to answer for! Sheena
In an empire of lies truth is treason. Phil
I wish that people who have been subjected this had stood their ground iinstead of resigning! Diane
Absolutely! Mark
Absolutely! Sue
PC is stifling free speech. Peter
It has effectively stifled any form of informed debate. Kevin
One of the “push factors” for my leaving teaching after 28 years. Neville
Media downplay the extent that a ‘had enough’ view has now been expressed in both UK & USA electorates. David
I am 65yrs old an have voted national at every election however this year NZ FIRST well get my party vote. Bruce
Has been for a long time. There was an old saying when I was a kid “Sticks & Stones may break your bones but names can never hurt you” Eric
Blame the media for a lot of this ive said for years you cant beleave a lot of what comes out of the papers. I bet they hate social media as it gives the individuals point of view. Clark
It’s ridiculous. Destroying NZ. Mary
Absolutely out of control. It now takes precedent over our freedom of speech. Tony
Absolutely! Don Brash was on the right track with his plan to eliminate PC. It is our biggest ptoblem. Jim
Totally. No need for more to be said. Rog
We’ve cancelled our paper sub. Our local rag has content more to our liking!! Brian
It’s out of control worldwide so lets hope NZ can lead the way and put a stop to this dangerous nonsense . Graeme
Try saying something in a public forum that is critical of maori/welfare/etc and see what happens to you! Carl
Yes and its getting worse every year. Take for instance this. The Dompost, I have written letters to the Editor pointing out the cost of things Maori with examples but my letters are never printed. My latest letter was the comparison with our new Transmission Gully highway at the cost of $896 million over the six years of construct pointing out that the Maori Language Commission had received $4.2 BILLION over the same time frame. Of course my letter was never printed. Laurent
Politically Correct Madness is completely out of control in NZ and destroying our lovely country. Kay
Political Control? Read Political Corruption! Kevan
Out of control to the point of ridiculous. Rick
Overseas people have been dragged into court for speaking their mind. In NZ it is drammed into our young people attending training eg nurses, teachers to be very careful to the point of being dishonest when giving their opinion. The emperor syndrome is well and truly established. Ido
Absolutely no doubt about it! The biggest scam ever. Dennis
Yours and other comments are spot on Muriel. 20 yrs ago I lost a management job when I was ganged up on by a group of radical nurses who complained about my “style” to an American male HR executive with a myriad of trivial PC complaints. He believed them and the chief stirrer actually replaced me. She was sacked 3 months later for incompetence but the damage to my reputation followed me to the next job. PC is used as an effective poison in many workplaces. For the past 20 years I have been a management consultant. So it was actually the incentive to becoming self employed! David
This question needs to be asked at every Secondary school in New Zealand. Paul
More than out of control. Political correctness is a fraud on truth. It is also cowardly intimidation, and intolerance, of those who have a different view from the PC brigade. The PC brigade is largely made up of people who call for tolerance but then, by one means or another, won’t tolerate views that don’t suit their pre-meditated purposes. So they attack and abuse them with cowardly name-calling such as racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic, you name it. And now hate speech! Jack
Offence cannot be given, it can only be taken. The choice of whether to take offence resides squarely with the receiver. Alan
Most definitely PC is way out of control. The ludicrous provisions of the Privacy Act are among the many examples of stupidity. Graeme
Too much publicity and attention is given to certain people’s opinion on “human rights” but there’s virtually no mention of “human responsibilities”. A person does not have rights without responsibilities. Alan
Absolute. But I cannot see a solution for those idiotic so and so’s who promote it and enforce it. Johan
Commonsense is a are quality to find these days. Dave
ABOSOLutely out of control and requiring decisive political action by the elected members of Parliament. Alan
Some is unbelievable. David
We need political correctness like a hole in the head! Paul
It has been out of control for a long time, and it is being allowed to get worse. William
There is something equally virulent -cultural correctness. Bill
Cannot fart without it insulting someone. Its gone mad. Nick
As a result of some genuine comments (I just wanted to now why) posted on a FB site recently, I was viciously by members of this FB group; attacked for my comments. All I did was express my concern for what I observed from ‘where I sat’. It seems that was very wrong. I had my comments re-written by another ‘from the other side’. I was accused of ‘where I sat’. Really?? All I wanted to know was why I was seeing what was actually going on, and trying to understand it. The ‘rise-up’ partly explained it. Jan
Out of control – OR – in the control of the leftists? Geoffrey
This has been going on for years – we are well overdue for a change in mindset. Graham
Suppressed feelings about social matters will Eventually lead to violence. John
Happy new year, Muriel. I appreciate the articles on political correctness and Obama’s legacy. Lets see if you can have comment from conservative Americans who support Donald Trump to counter mainstream media, including The Dominion Post who are hell-bent on trying to destroy Trump, and that includes Obama and NZ Green politicians. Ian
And getting worse. C G
Most people don’t tell things as they are for fear of not being politically correct. Gaire
Thin skins!! John
Totally out of control. The Mad Butcher fiasco was absolutely ridiculous with a mountain being made out of a molehill. The media are to blame as well the way they promote this political correctness. Somehow we need to reverse it because all too often it actually harms those it is meant to protect. Helen
PC madness these days. Kevin
Ridiculous socialists! Tony
I am amazed at the intolerance of those who preach tolerance. Murray
It’s beyond stupid and totally out of control. Kerin
Socialist governments, including the ‘Key’ led National government, have almost destroyed the freedoms that have been taken for granted, & fought for in world wars, by the free world countries. Thankfully President Trump offers a glimmer of hope for America. Here in N.Z., Political Correctness has been a major tool used in the dumb-down education system that has taught a whole generation to believe theories as fact. Socialist ‘Key’ went one step further & entrenched apartheid into our political & legal system. [We no longer have one law for all] The majority in the U.S.A. finally said enough is enough, & voted accordingly. Sadly, in N.Z., we struggle to find a political leader who can be relied on, to take us in the right direction. Is Winston the best we have? I find it disgusting that only 1 per-cent of readers contribute financially to this valuable NZCPR news letter.. Is this just another example of the FREE RIDE society that the Socialists have bred?– A.G.R.
PC is tyranny. Roy
Your article says it with clarity and profound insight. Thank you. Peter
It now appears that you cannot tell anyone what you think of them even though it might be right what you say in case they take it as an insult Get rid of half the bureaucracy about rights and tell Susan Devoy to go back to playing Squash. ColIn
Free speech is rapidly disappearing. Sue
How many times does one read headlines that incurs the comment – “don’t let the facts get in the way of a flamboyant story.” Warwick
e.g. Opposition to the Treaty industry is taken to be anti-Maori. Don
Commonsense and free speech are casualties of the propaganda. People are too afraid to speak their minds, or it’s not polite! Fiona
This is a tautology: by definition, political correctness describes any belief system, and the behaviour stemming from it, that is not controlled by reason. Graham
Change is coming, but needs to be implemented faster, however when you have a conservative govt implementing race based legislation, you begin to wonder who will carry the torch. John
Completely 500%. Bruce
‘Political correctness’ fosters self-centredness. Believe what I believe. Think like I do. Act like I do. If not, then you’re intolerant, divisive. Hold it a moment. Who set the guidelines for this strange game? The PC brigade! Bruce
But how do we combat it? Perhaps by loudly labelling as ‘PC’ everything so perceived. And WHY did the people mentioned feel it necessary to resign? Just wave two fingers at the groups and media and don’t reply, thus providing more fuel for their venom?? Anthony
All political correctness is complete rubbish! Mike
Well past time for correction. Jim
Absolutely and totally. Graeme
I am now classed as a right wing bigot For voting and having an opinion. Keith
Worked in an educational system for quite some time, where staff simply oozed with it. To be fair not all, overall those that did were men amongst boys & boys amongst men, Quite sad really, They lived in sheer terror of the hairy armpit & Roman sandal brigade that swarmed into the system pumping their poisoned negative views into young men, they the students, often came to me wondering what made these social justice warrior types brain operate, not allowed to tell them would you believe. It is in my opinion a form of civil control, Marxism & Nazism used to great effect, being that you watch what you say, think & write. Am I on to it? Max
Totally out of control and daily getting worse. David
Most definitely. David
Your examples are correct. This sickening PC must stop Hugo
Most sensible article on this subject I have read in a long while. Harry
I am sick of being told that Maori cannot be racist when we all know the most racist people in NZ are Maori or those who think they are or pretend to be Maori. Max
I was incensed that the Mad Butcher felt obliged to apologise to the stupid woman. Wah
Caused by the media reporting balance to the minority view, not the facts in their context. Max
Yes. Absolutely! Graeme
Goes hand in hand with the APARTHEID that reigns in NZ. We should ALL simply become Tagata Whenua. Problem solved. Oh and maybe we’d ALL need to be LGBT & white middle aged dudes. Geoff
Claiming the Treaty is our founding document and constitutes a “partnership between Crown and Maoris” is NZ’s pillar of PC. How can this be when the Treaty was ratified by having “the boundaries of New South Wales (NSW) extended to encompass all of the islands of NZ”, causing Maoris to become immediate British citizens the same as everyone else? It was Queen Victoria’s Royal Charter of 16-11-1840 which authorised our split from NSW to become an independent British colony, gave us our first constitution and English law only. The above Royal Charter is held in Archives NZ, Wellington. George
The paper by Dr Gregg is frighteningly accurate, but more scary is that millions of people worldwide do not know the origins and intent of the PC ‘culture’. Tony
How can we ever expect to fix social problems in our country, if we are too afraid to talk about those problems, who the problems mainly are caused by, or who are the most affected by them? If we can’t be critical of wrongs we see being done, then we can’t fix them. It’s totally ridiculous. Brenda
Completely and utterly and should relegated to the rubbish bin along with all the other Acts. Jo
It will destroy the very idea of honest comments and instill deceit in every statement of those speaking for purpose. Brian G
And it has been for sometime to a point where the truth is being suffocated… Graeme
Any law based on race is racist. Martin
No point in commenting – it won’t stop the bleeding-heart liberals. When they realise it’s all backfired on them, it’ll be too late… Andy
It’s been out of control for too long. One of Karl Marx’s contemporaries made a comment that has stayed with me. He said that bureaucracy would become an iron cage around society and he could only see a dark icy future for society. What say you? Kath
Not only in NZ but most western countries. Mike
Hell yeah! Insanity has set in. John
‘ It is ridiculous. Michael
Common sense has far more value. Gary
It is not only political correctness its all forms control. The dept of health and satety have gone mad self perpetuatig to justify their exestence, Councils, need to cover their decisions by employing hords of consultants etc Ian
And has been for at least the last two decades. John
Elitism is not good, anywhere in the world. David
Our leaders need to remember who elected them, and start representing ALL of us, instead of giving special rights to a certain group in exchange for votes. To scream RACIST at someone who is only asking for equality before the law, as is our right in a Democracy, is over the top. All race based privilege needs to be revoked. Joyce
It certainly holds too much sway in reporting, in our media. Frank
To the extent that the lunatics are running the asylum! Andrew
Muriel has nailed it as usual. It’s gone from a fair and sensible balance to extreme and silly. Less sheeple and more independent thinkers needed. Donald
It is completely out of control. Tell the truth and duck for over! Bruce
A simple glance at recent changes under the Land Transport Rules: Small Passenger Services Reform 2017 which seeks to impose limits on drivers seeking recompense for car pooling establishes this!! David
Has steadily been getting worse and worse over the last 25 years that you have to be sooo careful what you say. Ross
It can’t be a democracy, The loony left wingers are stomping on every attempt at freedom of expression and you get get called a rascist, bigot and whatever else they want to brand you. Dump some of these weird Bills and get rid of some of these stupid Government Departments and the Waitangi Tribunal. Steve
Totally true. Monty
Absolutely. But while it exists why don’t we with Celtic ancestry, form a Celtic Tribunal and take back that which Maori took by force. After all the Celts were the owners of the Land. Dave
This poll in itself is not PC, Let’s all vote! Peter
Well and truly over the top. Barry
Time we woke up and told these idiots to pull there heads in and tell the media to ignore a lot of this rubbish. John
Absolutely! Colin
Yes, that and local body bureaucracy are both totally out of control in this country and both h stripping us of of the ‘can do’ and innovation that was once a hallmark of kiwis. Alan
Most of NZ media emulates American ‘fake news.’ Just as so much actual news here in NZ is twisted by the media for their own agenda – dare I say it – left leaning knockers pushing hard through misreporting; seeking ‘more for me’ rather that reporting balanced news. Time to drain this swamp in New Zealand! Stuart
I’m thinking of forming C.R.A.P. Citizens Revolting Against Political correctness!!!!!! Andy
Absolutely. Ian
Absolutely it is. How it has got to this stage is quite unbelievable. All of the people that support this pc rubbish are nothing more than a pack of losers who have no common sense. Mike
Not only New Zealand but throughout the world. People, I believe are becoming more thin skinned and are unwilling to accept criticism. I am of an age now that I do not get upset by folk when I call a spade a spade. Dennis
Yes. For a considerable time it has been increasing in its intensity; and now is the real enemy, not only the right freedom of speech and expression of views, but of democracy itself! In tandem partnership with a ever larger rampant bureaucracy it is going to be very difficult to reverse and eliminate without a change of attitude from the right spectrum of the political divide. It is an essential part of the political left and weapon they will not likely give up lightly, especially as they managed successfully to start it in schools; and most of the general public blindly accept it as a religion of normal behavior. It will take a monumental campaign to turn this around in New Zealand; a Trump in our politics might be the answer, especially so under the MMP system. Brian
It’s the most stupid thing and should never have got off the ground. Dona
The media have read the views of the average person incorrectly They probably don’t want to understand and are quite happy taking their egos for a walk to justify their stupid PC stance. John
A Very Good Article! Frances
Totally out of control just as it is in many communities throughout the world – to the the total detriment of these communities. Hylton
When you can only speak openly among known fellow confidantes for fear of persecution this surely will lead to a division worse than honest, open and free speech would engender. Gary
It has been for 25 years. Richard
If you don’t like a true comment you can call it racist etc, as you say, madness. Edward
Grossly out of control. Lew
There will never be a country of one people while some radicals continue to stir up with comments of us and them. Jon
Absolutely .. Its total bullshit! Des
Mad Butcher was right-operative word is ‘also’ in what he said. In other words NZ belongs to NZers regardless of runic background. Tony
The hole thing is way out of control as you correctly report. What happened to “one country, One people & equal rights for all”? Robyn
Totally out of control and we are being manipulated every day in the press and TV. Jeff
Absolutely absolutely. It almost wants me to leave our shores………but where to go as we see it in other countries as well……but not so prominent! Joe
I really hope Chriss Kelly told those in in the system where to shove it prior to resigning for stating a perfectly obvious fact.Their loss is far greater than his regretably and god help our universities if this purported rationale behind this contiues to prevail. Phil
Excessive political correctness is nullifying robust factual debate. We should start by getting rid of Susan Devoy and her outfit. She was a very good badminton player but her attributes stop there. Albie
When I was a kid Political Correctness was something spouted by Hitler to justify his madness and con the people. Bill
It’s completely evident! Neil
Take me back to the old Transvaal. There is no PC in the Philippines. Christopher
Roll on the next election where peaple can have their say whithout being called racist. Frank
Only since the Smith’s (so-called, maoris…) took over several years ago. John
Stupidity gone mad. Barbara
Definitely, and it has been for a good 10 years, maybe longer, maybe closer to 20 years. I remember Sir Brian Lochore saying that PC is ruining this country and he was right then and even more so now. I was saying it 5 years before he did and so did many other NZers. I will continue to say what I think and a person doesn’t like it I am happy to discuss my views logically and rationally and if the complainant doesn’t like it then get a life. Kevin
The racist and gender attitudes of feminists and Maori are dangerous and ignorant. Gordon
Get off our backs – you short sighted people! Donald
I would like to make a comment, but I might offend someone. Mitch
Time to get back to reality – and free speech. Graham
Totally over the top. CHRIS
It surely is, it is so bad in Company you have to think before you say anything. It is especially difficult for us older fella’s as we are used to speaking our minds!! Ian
And I’m tired of the Insults againt a demotraically elected President! The left only like democracy when it suits them – see Brexit, Scottish Independence, shall I go on? DERRICK
It has got to the stage where we are afraid to write or say anything in case it is misunderstood with potential nasty consequences. The country’s media is pathetic. Dot
Absolutely out of control. Moyra
Out of control, and it becomes necessary to suppress the idiocy, the strident voices of discordance and often too of feigned rage by manipulators and distorters of public views. These people are also manipulators of language attaching the word “phobia” to issues about which the p.c. legions want to promote. We are not frightened of homosexuality, nor of Islamic extremism, for example; we are simply opposed to these cults; and even most strongly opposed; but not frightened of them. Because if push comes to shove, we will deal with them, deal to them. L
In 2017 let’s start to demolish PC by voting in support of politicians who will focus on abolishing Maori seats before the 2020 election. Ignore other issues, the business of govt will roll on, but dealing with our racial political system is vital for NZ. John
This is so self evident, universally rejected by the majority who , as usual, are too gutless to speak out in public Any time you let your society, government, or any other entity tell you you can not speak your mind and comply you set us all on the downward slope to totalitarianism. Show some back bone you cowards and stand up to this madness. Peter
Bring back some common sense to our politics all the polys want is to be re-elected at what ever cost there are no principals any more Richard
Am I allowed to? Richard
Has been for a long time but the slippery slope was made much worse by the last Labour government. Frank
Political correctness is inimical to freedom of speech and freedom of expression in the public square. John
Insanely out of control – I have stopped listening to RNZ News because of this!. Don
We are witnessing the stripping away of decades old traditions, morals, ethics and common courtesies thru this insidious culture. If left unchecked it will lead to the total collapse of western culture. Steve
We are learning to cringe when the PC brigade openly oppose free speech – we need to stand up to these people and put them in their place. Brent
It is a deplorable shame the way we have bent to these people.. Don
Sometimes yes..we will always have the Bullies, the strong, the weak, etc Elaine
The media are doing exactly like NZ post, providing a poor coverage and service. people look for alternatives, like NZ post /email. Newspapers people will source news from reliable web sites. Michael
We are in serious trouble when the messenger is shot, not the issue debated. Willy
Yes I do……..f*** the Judge. Wiremu
Absolutely. I am so pleased you are focussing on this subject. The media has a lot to answer for, have they no better stories? Christine
Certainly agree with this. But is there a will in politicians to do this? Martyn
Very well covered in Dr Muriel Newman’s covering article. Colin
It’s nauseating. Barbara
Has been getting progressively out of control for years. Unfortunately, most of it has been abut “look at me, I have gained political points by supporting that noisy minority” The politicians have the tools to put things right, but continue to get it wrong. Maybe Donald Trump can lead the way back to normality by forcing things back into perspective. When the world sees it working, maybe they will follow? Neil
The PC claptrap has been out of control for years, Absurd claims by feminists, socialists, opinion writers in the press, all trying to convince the public that they know better than everyone else on what is right, you only need to read the Herald paper and the views of their “Opinion columnists” to confirm this. The Mad Butcher report a perfect example. The woman involved is being racist by claiming some right she has “I can do what I want” because she is a member of some tribe of the maoris. This whole PC business is as ludicrous as is the people who promote it. David
NZr’s used to be one people but through PC rubbish have now several diverse “racial” entitities eg.Maori whites,emigrants and a rabid government creating a phobic society with false media, we are on a self destruct path that needs digging up. Ian
The over sensitivity by many people to any remark made regarding race or language is immediately followed by accusations of ‘red neck’ or racist. At one time such comments would be accepted as normal conversation but the pendulum has swung so far the other way that Europeans are now the ones discriminated against. Of note is the recent change in RNZ National policy, which now forces their news readers to complete each news report with some Maori comment which leaves most of us guessing as to its meaning. Familiar NZ place names which many of us have pronounced all our lives, using English vowel sounds are now changed. Do you know where Muttermutter is or Mount KoKo or Toepora? What about the names of places with N—-r, which is the big change and sanitizing at present? Chris
And has been growing across society in every field with the nanny state allowing people to take no responsibility for their own actions. Dave
There are more important matters to debate. Barry
It has become ridiculous! June
Definitely David
It’s time to call it what it is : Cultural Marxism. Barbara
Yes, yes, YES… most definitely! Trevor
Soft politics breeds soft electorates; criticism becomes intolerable, and minorities cause havoc in society. William
Absolutely. David
Political Correctness has been out of control for a long time. There should be immediate and severe push-back from moderates every time it raises it’s head above the parapet. Allan
Excellent article, Muriel; entirely to the point Bruce
Lets just go back to when you could call a spade a spade. Jim
Most definitely. Beryl
New Zealand is the poster child for socialisim & how effective it can be on controlling & manipulating a populations culture. Tracy
Totally out of control. Tim
Time to bring it down. Ron
Over the top so often -laughable. Ray
Superb article by DR Muriel. Howard
…a dictatorship’ would have more freedom… C
Absolutely and that is nothing new but what can we do about it? Gary
It has gone far beyond being a sick joke. Noel
God yes we are drowning in it how great a nation we would have if it was rained in. Nigel
Political Correctness has been out of control in NZ for a very long time. We will never overcome this abuse of freedom of speech until the media are reigned in and expected to stop promoting those who are so easily offended. Stop scouring twitter and Instagram for their news….people go there if they want to see photos or read comments. Freedom of speech cost many lives and we must now work to ensure we don’t let the PC brigade take over and lose that right.It is time for the non PC people to speak up and out! Gail
Absolutely. Robyn
And overseas as well. It’s just mind control and censorship by another name. It’s become a tool of the intolerant to dominate the reasonable. Rebecca
Shame on those who resigned and did not have the guts to make stand. Ian
This is demonstrated by our football teams – we have the All Blacks and the Maori All Blacks – a team chosen on a racist basis even though there are many Maoris in the real All Blacks. Why does that team exist? The All Blacks represent NZ – the Maori All Blacks represent apartheid NZ. Liz
Yes, just look at the madness over the mad butcher’s comments. The whole thing was stupid and the media just made it worse. Andrew
PC is completely out of control – you can’t say anything these days without being viciously attacked and accused of dreadful things. Donald
There is no free speech in NZ anymore. Bruce
You are right about the media – I cannot bear to read or listen to the news when they are on one of their PC campaigns. They are a disgrace to their profession. Ray
I totally agree that the whole human rights macinery should be abolished as it seems intent on undermining what little freedom we have left in this country. John