I have a couple shows coming up soon, Boston at Whitehaus (Aug 28th) and Providence at 95 Empire (29th).
I’ve been amused by the number of people that have been titillated with concern by the idea of The Coincidental Hour at Whitehaus. Apparently, Whitehaus has become associated with some hyper-functioning political correctness. I’m not sure how true it is or not, but regardless, some folks anticipate high tension when The Coincidental Hour meets Whitehaus.
Honestly, I have no problem with political correctness. As Stewart Lee cracks, “it’s better than what he had before”. When operating at it’s best, political correctness is an important rudder that positions hate speech and ignorance in the direction of obsolescence while guiding language towards a cultural inclusivity.
But it’s a funny term, isn’t it, “politically correct”? “Correctness” implies that there is an agreed upon fact used to measure accuracy. It sounds like an effort to apply scientific method to the mutable and subjective nature of political beliefs. The whole thing lends itself to potential clumsiness, misuse and abuse.
When political correctness aims at carefully negotiating beyond attitudes and opinions that are based on ignorance or lies, by employing and promoting inclusive language, then it’s being used as a tool of progress. But when political correctness is used as a method of blatant censorship, no matter how much I might politically disagree with what is being censored, then I personally find that… incorrect.
At any rate, I’m not worried about offending people at the Whitehaus or even in the boycott-happy town of Providence, nor am I trying to offend. It will happen, and people will like it or not. I feel very strongly that the Coincidental Hour is indeed politically correct, but it just may not be correct according to the politics of some people.
[poster by Carl Dunn]