How do you define...
What is it really...
Why do so many embrace it or fight it
Political correctness is intellectual and social tyranny.
I have experienced it in the church. PC is a way to control the masses.
I see the modern version of the PC ideal being forced onto civil society by the schools and media.
Usually, when people can’t answer for why they believe,
It is easier for them to shut others down by being offended and emotional.
Thus, keeping people ignorant and stupid.
I think of it as if I'm going to insult someone, I'm not going to bring up something they can't change. I will find some other flaw or weakness in your character. Let's say someone is particularly greedy. Insults that compare this person to the monopoly characters is far more politically correct then using a Jewish slur. I can still tell someone to go fornicate themselves on a rusty iron stick, I can compare someone's overwhelming ignorance to a black hole, heck, I can imply their last relationship would have lasted longer if they could perform a cardio activity for more then 30 seconds.
Now, looking at that webcomic, who can guess why that second statement is politically incorrect?
P.C. is a contrived set of sacred cows of the left. Cobbled together to create a defense to arguing their losing points by shutting down speech. Used in the University setting it is a simplistic code of conduct used to indoctrinate the willing and control the thoughts and input of the unwilling. Donald Trump's original genius was to shatter P.C. in the republican primary thus opening the election up to real issues described realisticly. P.C. is also on its back heel of it's last leg if you follow Trump's template. Reject it! Prove it's illogic! Ridicule it! Walk over it and win!
PC is an attempt to control speech and thus the flow of thoughts. It is set up so that anytime a group can decide that a name or phrase in unacceptable. This gives control over political discourse by turning someone’s statement into hate speech when ever needed.
PC is anti-social thought control. We've always had "Socially Correct" enforced through tradition and normalization. It's the "Political" that makes the modern censorship so petty and dangerous. PC attempts to control, manage, direct social norms and mores by and for expansion of political control and dominance. It's the use of political power to dictate and mandate social normalization of not yet assimilated ideas, ideals, and standards.
And it's evil.
You know what's really tragic? If we all just rotated our axes a tiny bit, we could laugh and celebrate our differences in good-natured and inclusive, meaningful interactions. It's a pretty good thing to laugh together. But, because some people are mean or greedy, we have to all walk on eggshells.
Nothing wrong with political correctness. We should all generally try not to hurt others' feelings. PC became wrong when it was weaponized for political power and control. The noble idea behind PC was prostituted for self-aggrandizing, self-congratulatory moral elitism.
I think political correctness is societal self-censorship. Instead of the government using force to censor people, the people themselves censor for speech that a group of people find offensive or hateful. I think it is really an emotional wall that folks build around certain issues or topics that they know they cannot defend with reason, usually to advance a political agenda. For example, it is politically incorrect to say that people coming across the border are rapists even though we know that TONS of women are raped coming across the border. Why? Because it is offensive to Mexicans. What is the real reason? Because Democrats really want more voters in the U.S., and they think more immigrants will mean more Democrat voters either now or in the future. On then other side, it is politically incorrect to take a knee during the national anthem. Why? Because it is offensive to the military. What is the real reason? Because making a big deal about over-payed babies exercising free speech is a good way to score points with certain groups of people.
I think so many embrace political correctness because it redefines terms such that they become inherently more advantageous to certain arguments. (Ex. illegal alien sounds a lot worse than the politically correct term: immigrant.) Therefore, it becomes much easier to shut down opposition because it makes the other side look morally detestable--it has nothing to do with the other side's reasoning.
I think people fight political correctness because it is the only way to get through that emotional wall and address serious issues on the basis of reason. You cannot have important conversations without crossing the threshold into the realm of politically incorrect speech.
According to Merrian Webster: conforming to a belief that language and practices that could offend political sensibilities should be eliminated.
How does one take that? I think is a big part of what is happening in the culture war. Is it a majority rule? If so, then it ls an offence to the minority. It is a cycle that consumes itself. People want it because there are some things that are wrong. People also fight against it because it gets to the point where everything is an offence. Individuals need to have "right think". Sometimes it is forgotten adveristy can builds character.
I unintentionally offend people all the time. I am.ok with that because I am sometimes offended by what people say as well. I guess the balance is when it impedes on another's human rights and freedoms?