“Political correctness is not merely the imposition of rules of sensitivity on us; it is also the demand that incorrect thoughts expressing the forbidden attitudes must be stigmatized and abolished. For reasons I have given earlier, this seems virtually impossible, but impossibility has never discouraged moral reformers. And the basic assumption of the politically correct moral reformer is that the moral life is essentially imitative. That is part of the reason why the anti-discrimination movement is so preoccupied with creatures called ‘role models.’ The assumption is that the young (particularly) will imitate those they admire, so the state attempts in the first place to control the people called ‘celebrities’ by imposing the responsibilities of ‘model-hood’ upon them. It relies on the psychology of imitation to control the way people behave.
“One way of understanding this strange project is to say that it is a version of the story of the fall of man, played backwards, so that fallen men return to their pristine condition of moral goodness.”
▪ Kenneth Minogue, The Servile Mind – How Democracy Erodes the Moral Life (Encounter, 2010) extract from pages 107 through to 109.
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