No compassion for PC heretics!

In Editorial on July 15, 2013 at 3:30 pm

Lama Surya Das writes about a meeting between an elderly monk and His Holiness the Dalai Lama. During the meeting, the venerable monk stopped the treasured meeting so he could pick up an ant that had been struggling to cross the highly polished floor between the two men. The action surely cut into the allotted meeting time, but it made all the difference for the ant. For ‘some reason’ I seldom click back to the blogs of people new to Phyne Dyning. Most times, the click seems to disappoint. Today was the exception and ‘zanyzacreviews’ (on WordPress) gave me some seeds to chew on. A little while later, I followed ‘Dennis’ back to his poetry site and to his writings about the homeless (gottafindahome on WordPress). Sure, it cut into my allotted time to write. But it made a difference.

Paula Deen? Hang her!

KTVU news reporters? Hang tires filled with petrol around their necks and light them!

Emma Way? Crucifixion atop an anthill!

[Cue the mobs with torches and pitchforks.]

In our quest for perfection in matters of tolerance, Americans have shown a willingness to inflict brave punishments and exile upon transgressors of Holy Political Correctness.

Burn the heretics!

Heretic Paula Deen was exiled from her food kingdom after she was sued for once using ‘the n-word’.


Remember when all hell broke loose after someone used ‘niggardly’ in a news story? I remember burying my head in my hands when that story broke. Mobs have limited vocabularies.

Asiana Airlines threatened suits against KTVU after an intern bamboozled (Is ‘bamboozled’ still permitted?) the station’s anchors into identifying the Korean pilot as Sum Ting Wong (Or was it, Ho Lee Fuk or Wi Tu Lo?)

Are we substituting hypersensitivity for cultural awareness?

Let’s consider the case of Heretic Emma Way.

Emma bashed into a cyclist on her way to work and later tweeted somewhat triumphantly and callously about the incident on social media

Within days, a howling mob descended on Way and she became an instant pariah. The accounting firm where she worked as an intern promptly suspended Way and ultimately terminated her employment. They probably issued a tear-stained press release mewing something about Way’s behavior “not being representative of our company’s culture”.

What does Way’s sacking say about the company culture? “Make a stupid mistake and pay for it with your life”?

Ultimately, Way will be hard to place in a new job. She will be forever branded as that person.

No doubt Ms. Way will end up owing (and being unable to pay) whatever damages the cyclist experienced. Her rent or house payment will be late. Her dog or cat will go without vet care. Her insurance agent, grocer, butcher, baker, and candlestick maker will lose her business.

Serves her right! Right?

Or does it?

Paula Deen got axed (not ‘asked’) from her spot with the Food Network. That paragon of moral business behavior, Wal Mart vowed not to sell Deen’s cookware. Her publisher filed her latest book in the big circular file. Deen was stripped of her chef’s jacket faster than a Hell’s Kitchen contestant who put piss in Gordon Ramsay’s risotto.

It looks like Phyne Dyning is taking the side of the louts. Man the tar buckets! Get the feather pillows!

Calm down.

Remember Fiddler on the Roof? Remember the scene where the Menachem, the village beggar, besets his fellow villagers just before Shabbos Eve (Friday night):

Villager: “And here is a coin for you.”

Beggar: “One. Last week you gave me two coins.”

Villager: “I’ve had a bad week.”

Beggar: “You’ve had a bad week. So? I should suffer?”

Therein, dear friends, is the lesson.

Deen was a boor for using the ‘n-word’ that is unutterable by non-blacks or unless it’s part of a Hollywood script. The prank pulled on the KTVU reporters was in bad taste. Emma Way did a very callous thing and then worsened it with more childish behavior.

Do Deen’s employees need to suffer? What about her investors? What about her support crew? All of these people should do without?

What about Ms. Way?

She’s just out of school. Jobs are tight. Why should her cat or dog risk being euthanized at a shelter because their human companion screwed up? Why should her landlord go unpaid? What about her future? I’ll bet she has student loans? Who will pay those?

“She should have thought about that before.”


We all screw up…sometimes in epic fashion.

Let’s think of a middle way out of this.

What if Way’s employer released a statement saying, “Our firm does not share the values expressed by Ms. Way or in how she handled this highly publicized incident. Our corporate culture is one of responsibility and respect. Therefore, we are enthusiastically retaining Ms. Way in her trainee position and we will endeavor to pass our values to her. We look forward to her embracing those values and those of our community and we trust that she will use this experience to grow.”

Would that be so hard?

Would it be unthinkable for Deen’s publisher to recognize that their client grew up in the South almost sixty years ago and to make a statement about Deen’s contributions to the culinary arts? Are there no African-American chefs who were inspired by Deen’s cooking skills? Why do we dare think Deen is unsalvageable?

In the end, the mob howls for ‘justice’. At night, wrapped in the blankets of their own beds, they pray for mercy.

We all do.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: