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What Is Politically Correct?


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Political Correctness is an outgrowth of what I long ago deemed The Professionally Sensitive - groups that organized and created an industry out of complaining over perceived injustices. These groups used to solicit donations for which they would send postcards to officials or broadcasters. The cost of this response was negligible and the profits these groups reaped from received donations was enormous. Like Topsy, these groups and their influence grew and grew until now their loud voices command the discussion.

 

Oh - and shame on me for the reference to Topsy!

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ThelmaTodd wrote:

<< Save the PC filters for films in current production if you like. You don't apply them retroactively 80 years after the fact. To do so is an attempt at rewriting history by willful omission and withholding of evidence. >>

 

The problem is that those PC filters are used in some current productions to *rewrite history.*

 

One movie that stands out like a sore thumb is the Disney remake of the movie "Annie" (1999). The producers placed minority children in a white orphanage in *1933.* Anyone that has even a slightest bit of historical knowledge or lived during that period knows plainly well the 1930's was at the height of segregation and bigotry.

 

No way can minority children be housed in an orphange for whites during 1933 unless they have a death wish. This movie to me will always be the poster child for CP gone overboard. Present movie producers can't rewrite history just to make our minority children "feel better" in watching it. They are during harm, causing confusion and creating contradictions for future generations.

 

Imagine some child living 80 years from now watching "Annie" (1999) not knowing the CP logic of the day saying to their parents, look there was no segregation during the 1930's, someone lied to us.

 

Stuff like this are how myths are created.

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It appears to me that "political correctness" is a mask some people employ in the attempt to seem more tolerant.

 

There's no reason one has to insult my intelligence in order NOT to insult all the gimps, midgets, blind guys and retards! OR the **** and chinks and micks and wops...

 

...and honkies, who never left the farm! (apologies to the Firesign Theater).

Sepiatone

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Hi hamradio!

 

Ah! There is another aspect to film- using it to rewrite history. Of course I was refering to things "old and in the can", being viewed and judged in hindsight.

 

The timing of your post and this thread are fortunate, as I was preparing another film submission for today on my *VINTAGE EXPLOITATION FILMS-FILMOGRAPHY thread in Your Favorites* that is to highlight your very point! An infamous case of a filmmaker using film to deliberately rewrite history! Watch for it in a few hours.

 

I suppose that something like PC has always existed, only in past generations of course they didn't call it that. Filmmakers at one time were never free to totally flaunt social norms, recall the Hays Office, Motion Picture Code etc. (or concerns about box office impact- the ultimate censor if you like!) With greater freedom comes the possibility of abuse- like rewriting history!

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> I agree with you, Ham Radio... and the TCM messageboards is a perfect example of political correctness taken to its absurd extreme.

> One would hope that true film fans could use the boards to discuss classic film: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly, The Hilarious and Everything In Between. Sadly, the place is a semi-conscious graveyard for blowhards and control freaks, intent on eliminating the human spirit from any and all discussions. It's death by PC... And it's not the fault of the Moderator... he's Alive, he Understands, but he is forced to kowtow to the prickly, humorless drones who want to drain the blood and color from every conversation. It's not fair to him either.

 

I do not think the Message Boards is all about Political Correctness. It is more about being courteous and respectful of other posters here. You and others on this particular thread may call that PC, I call it playing nice.

 

There are true film fans here. Maybe you are not looking in the right places. Without getting negative here, I would say that many of yours and other's comments here may feel this way only visit and comment on the Hot Topics and General Discussion Forums. Maybe I am wrong here, but I don't think I have ever seen you comment on the Films and Filmmakers Forum, the Favorites Forum or on many of the Genre Forums. Like I wrote, I may be wrong here, there are so many threads on each forum it would be nearly impossible to find out just how many threads you have written on or made comments on. If I am wrong about this let me apologize to you and others who have written here on this thread now.

 

As far as your comment........... *Sadly, the place is a semi-conscious graveyard for blowhards and control freaks, intent on eliminating the human spirit from any and all discussions. It's death by PC.*

 

I would disagree with your comment here. Sure, there are certain people who will go the extra mile to complain to the moderator or to write that people are being too negative or too non-PC, but that is the case with many message boards controlled by an organization like TCM. Obviously, TCM is owned by Time-Warner, and lets face it, they want to control and or at least at the minimum, maintain a certain decorum here on the boards. And I would have to say that part of this could be because there is no age limit to join the message boards.

 

People need to learn that you have to be civil here. Many posters have come and gone simply because they have been too rude, or too argumentative. There's nothing wrong with being argumentative, but you should be able to play nice. Not everyone has the same viewpoint you have. Tolerance needs to be followed and accepted. I do not think that this is PC.

 

I am not sure if you have written much on the Films and Filmmakers Forum, the Favorites Forum and or on many of the Genre Forums. It is on these specific forums where you will find "real" discussions going on about movies, actors, directors, music, writers, and almost anything that attracts serious discussions. This is not to say that "real" discussions of films do not take place on the Hot Topics or General Discussions forums, they do of course, but these other three forums are where the real "meat and potato" discussions take place. Everyday.

 

Each of these three Forums attracts a wide and varied collection of individuals who want to discuss films rather than engage in any form of non-positive behavior.

 

These forums do engage in discussions about the *"Good, The Bad, The Ugly, The Hilarious and Everything In Between"* as you wrote in your first paragraph, but without the histrionics that is usually associated with similar discussions in the Hot Topics and General Discussion forums.

 

> I've been on and off the board for years with my various e-mail addresses... each time I've re-joined I've witnessed the condescension and mistrust directed at the "new" people, myself included, who couldn't possibly know anything about movies, and whose contrasting opinions were by definition incorrect. TCM attracts an audience of the most intelligent, most culturally-enlightened, wealthiest people on the planet... but I can only describe the messageboards as a wasteland.

 

Well now, you have hit the nail on the head. You wrote that you have been on and off the board for years. Each time you came back, did you come back with the same user name?

 

Now, I must point out that because I have never had to leave the Message Board and then rejoin at a later date, I am not aware if there is a rule that states that you CAN NOT USE the same user name again. I don't know. But to me, if I was to leave for any other reason than for being banned, I would come back with the same user name I have now.

 

Because if you didn't use the same user name and that when you did return with a different user name and you continued to post like you had posted before you had left previously, then I would have to deduce that your coming back here represented someone who had an agenda, or just wanted to prevent anyone from knowing who you were before in a previous life here on the boards.

 

Many posters have done this. There is nothing wrong with wanting to come back after leaving, but it is somewhat silly (to me) to want to come back to the boards after an absence and NOT use your previous user name. That would definitely suggest to me that either you were banned, or you left because you received negative responses or that you were generally known as someone who liked to get into scrapes with other posters.

 

Unfortunately for this Message Board, there are many individuals here who have been victims of unnecessary attacks of a personal or even a political nature and have had to deal with trolling activity over the years. Whenever a new poster appears and that poster attempts to discuss non-relavent material or possibly engages in an activity that would be associated with certain forms of trolling, then most of the regular posters feel threatened.

 

You see, there are many of us here who have been here for years and yet have never had to change our user names or have left the Message Boards because we felt the need to do so because what we were writing generated negative activity, or that the comments we made were not universally accepted.

 

This is my fifth year of posting here and I have never, ever had to consider leaving the Message Boards. That is not to say that I don't have disagreements with other posters here, I do, but I have never felt that I needed to leave. There have been months where I have not posted anything. And that is probably because I had nothing to say or I was too busy at work. Now, I read mostly. I make comments when I think I can add something to the conversation, like I am doing here.

 

I have also engaged in posting that has gotten me warnings from the moderator. I have had to go and apologize several times to other posters here, usually through personal messaging. At times I have had to apologize right in the thread I was commenting on in the first place. Sometimes the exchanges we get into become heated and unfortunately even I am as guilty as the next person is about engaging in negative comments.

 

> Art, like life, like people, is a living breathing thing... people have their own reactions, their own interpretations, and when you prevent them from speaking their mind the passion dies. It's one thing to delete a thread or a post when it's SPAM... but when you delete an original, funny, offbeat opinion just for being different you are killing the conversation. The joy is in the conversation. That's why- in my opinion- TCM still hasn't broken through culturally- in spite of the fact that it's the greatest network in TV history. That's why the forum remains stuck in mid-90's technology and thought... that's why the messageboard users are afraid to express their own outrageous opinions and feel they're much safer nodding along and agreeing that everything is simply "good."

 

Sure, *art, like life, like people, is a living breathing thing*..... no question about it. People who post here do express themselves. They do speak their minds. Most just do it with common courtesy and decency, not with negative thoughts and unwanted comments. The problem is that many who do speak their minds do so because they want to stir up trouble or be the center of attention.

 

I have seen it countless times here on the boards. It happens most of the time on General Discussions and Hot Topics. You never see this sort of behavior on the other three forums I listed before. Why is that do you think?

 

My feeling is that the people who like to "push the envelope" do not want to visit the other forums because in reality they have nothing useful or informing to write. Or that they do not have substantive ideas to write about. They want to be read because of the general negativity of their posts. You visit those other three forums and there is genuine conversations going on between the posters there. Almost all of it is in the positive. It is night and day compared from what the General Discussions and Hot Topics forums present.

 

> Personally, I don't care how many movies someone has seen or if they have any expertise in the field... I don't care if they're 9 or 89... I just want to know what movies they LOVED or HATED, what actors they LIKE or DESPISE... their PERSONAL stories of movies are ten times more exciting than ancient industry gossip... It's a shame. Political correctness has taken the cocktails from the cocktail party, and what we're left with isn't a party I'd want to attend.

 

My own personal view is that what you wrote above is common throughout General Discussions and Hot Topics. Ever notice that many of the banned or deleted threads and comments come from these two forums? There are some deleted or locked up threads in Films and Filmmakers, Favorites and Genre forums, but that is mostly due to threads that are duplicated. The gossip that you speak of is everywhere on the boards. That is just part of the overall discussions going on here.

 

But if you dig deep enough in the other forums here you will see a lively debate and discussion about films, actors, and personal stories related to the posters discussing them. Just look around here. There is evidence of this activity going on. You are just not looking in the right places.

 

And I do not agree that the Message Boards is a wasteland. Maybe its a wasteland in General Discussions and Hot Topics by certain posters who need or want to be recognized all for the wrong reasons.

 

The Message Boards is a place for those of us who want to discuss films in a courteous way, a place to just be absorbed in other poster's thoughts and feelings. To engage in thoughtful discussions. If this is the meaning of PC, I don't buy it.

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I read both of your post and I agree with your take on the PC topic.

 

While I believe all content should be shown, based on what I have read here at this site over the years it is clear that those that cry about the world being too PC and the same ones that cry when TCM does shown certain films with what they would describe as a PC host. The Race in Hollywood threads have the evidence. Some people just wish to be angry.

 

As you also noted then there is all the false equivalencies. It is like they have never seen movies like Mississippi Burning, Brokeback Mountain etc....

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*darkblue,*

 

*This isn't a political discussion in my view. There's nothing in this conversation thus far that requires any intervention on my part. As long as everyone can take a deep breath before posting, and remain civil, respectful and polite, a thoughtful discussion about the impact of political correctness on the film industry (or TCM) is fine. As long as the discussion of PC remains PC, have at it (and yes, I do see the irony).*

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ThelmaTodd wrote:

>The timing of your post and this thread are fortunate, as I was preparing another film submission for today on my VINTAGE EXPLOITATION FILMS-FILMOGRAPHY thread in Your Favorites that is to highlight your very point! An infamous case of a filmmaker using film to deliberately rewrite history! Watch for it in a few hours.

>

>I suppose that something like PC has always existed, only in past generations of course they didn't call it that. Filmmakers at one time were never free to totally flaunt social norms, recall the Hays Office, Motion Picture Code etc. (or concerns about box office impact- the ultimate censor if you like!) With greater freedom comes the possibility of abuse- like rewriting history!

Both you and Michael (Admin) are making a good point about this discussion.

Political Correctness is about the social climate around us. Others may try to co-opt it for political reasons.

 

BTW- love your submissions to VINTAGE EXPLOITATION FILMS. I am sorry I don't have the time to respond more than I want to. Some are funny, some are disturbing, most are amazing and worthy of discussion. I think you are saving a bit of film history; I appreciate and applaud your efforts.

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Thank you very much Casablanca lover!

 

The long running exploitation film project has opened my own eyes to how many subgenres of it there are. You can exploit thematic and visual matter, you can make a film about something exploitational or you can exploit your position as filmaker and use the medium to spread mischief. *Leni Riefenstahl and D.W. Griffith* have earned a place in my museum gallery for the latter reason.

 

*The common thread that runs through all exploitation film is sensationalism of visual content or subject matter.*

 

PC and film itself is a nuanced phenomena. Sometimes undertaken through coercion (The Motion Picture Code), othertimes voluntarily for purposes of box office maximisation (out of fear of offending a class of paying customers). Othertimes out of fear of making the film uncommercial. (Film biographies and historical epics often have had to fictionalise their subject for that reason) Worst of all are when the film PC is part of the indocrination agenda of a totalitarian regime. The history of Nazi, Communist and Fascist cinema furnish abundant examples.

 

Do feel free to comment on the exploitation discussion thread! The furnished exhibits have been numerous and quite varied; they should provide a lot of fodder for discussion!

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