If you feel a news story does not measure up to expected journalistic standards, bring it to the Journalism Dry Cleaner. Through our collective wisdom, we will strip it of all offensive dirt.




Friday, 12 February 2016


Any action, write-up or utterance that is said to be 'politically correct' is a good thing. Good because it's cognisant of the need to be sensitive to any group of people in society, who are disadvantaged. It follows then that if the description is 'politically incorrect' the content is offensive by design or default. Two columns in rival Kenyan newspapers go with these two monikers. What gives? 

If the intention is to be politically correct, then the content could be assumed to be leaning towards delivering painful truths without directly upsetting sensibilities of the disadvantaged.

However, if one associates the column with being politically incorrect, then the content creator cares very little, if he or she offends or upsets the disadvantaged, is biased, unfair or even misleading.

But that is as far as the meaning derived from the dictionary is concerned.

In reality, the content in the cited newspaper columns could have everything, very little, or nothing to do with being politically correct or incorrect.

Throw in satire, which creatively seeks to ridicule societal shortcomings, and matters get even more complicated.

From pin-point satire to pen-point martyrdom

That's perhaps why freedom of expression alarm bells go off, if columnists, writers or even bloggers'  pin-point satire, appears on course to turn them into pen-point martyrs, courtesy of state agencies.

So, in summary:

- Columnists have a license to provoke, disgust or offend, right?

- And it doesn't matter if they are right or wrong, or take a wrong turn, right?

- If what is left after reading the articles is not an alright feeling, then there's nothing more left to write, right?

- You didn't get the point of this blog post, right?

In that case, maybe politically correct and politically incorrect are not both correct. (insert satire).

1 comment:

Kelvin Chege said...

No, I didn't get anything. But I guess what you are trying to say is that both politically correct and politically incorrect are important. I read Kwamchesi Makoha article regularly and I would classify him as being politically correct