There, I fixed it (Acapulco Edition)

Amid the carnage that has made Acapulco the murder capital of the world, one enterprising police chief believes he has found the solution to tourism woes: a brigade of attractive young women between the ages of 18 and 28 that will now “assist tourists across busy roads, patrolling the beachfront and detaining criminals while the arresting authorities arrive.”

Here are my favorite parts of this unbelievably sexist program:

a. “The unit starts its day at 7am at the western end of the bay, where after half an hour of applying their mandatory make-up, complete with pre-approved shades of bright-pink lipstick, the brigade it inspected by the municipal force’s senior officers.

b. “‘But it’s not sexist’, he [the police chief] insists, ‘we have fat chicks too’.”

c. “‘We focused on their physical fitness training in the swimming pool’”, a sentence uttered by … you guessed it, the least PC Police chief ever.

Given all this, I was surprised that brigade members weren’t dressed like Hooters waitresses.  Here’s a photo of the daily inspection:




(Just Don’t) Say Anything

Jonathan Chait has a good piece at the Atlantic documenting the University of New Hampshire’s new rules of politically correct speech.  It is very appropriately called “Everything is Problematic.”

While I do think educators should try to avoid using hurtful or stereotypical speech, UNH’s new guidelines would have me so worried that I think I would be terrified to say anything in the classroom.  Here are some examples of words and expressions that should not be used, along with their preferred replacements:

1. Older people, elders, seniors, senior citizen (People of advanced age)

2. Poor person (person living at or below the poverty line, people experiencing poverty). Likewise, don’t say “rich,” say instead person of material wealth.

3. Obese, overweight (people of size).  Really, UNH? People of size?  don’t all people have size by definition?

These new guidelines also seem like they would lead to passive, roundabout ways of speaking that hinder clear communication.  Just hearing things like “person of material wealth” would make my eyes glaze over as a student.