January 4th, 2006

PC Marches On

Posted in The Job - Comment by 200

Only in this case PC means ‘Political Correctness’ not ‘Police Constable‘. It seems that the first is more important than the second these days.

According to an article on the BBC News website a certain Pc Zahid Malik, from Nottinghamshire Police has complained to one of the Police Magazines which nobody reads that their use of the term ‘Black Museum’ is racist. It follows hot on the heels of another PC (Police Constable this time) being told by a trainer not to use the phrase ‘Black Coffee’ on a training course. (it should be coffee without milk, apparently).

The Black Museum (yes I do refuse to call it the Museum without a defined colour) is situated within New Scotland Yard and depicts the history of crime in London and surrounding areas back to 1875. It’s been known as the Black Museum for many years, presumably due to the nature of the contents. Which include exhibits from many famous murders and misdeads. 

PC Malik says “I question the negative use of the word `black’ in these contexts.”

“I feel we all have an important responsibility to ensure that the language and terminology we use is in a sensitive and appropriate manner.  

“We live in times where language/images and motives can easily be misinterpreted and misunderstood.”

That’ll be easily misinterpreted by people who feel the only correct use of the word ‘black’ is in terms of racial groups.

This comes from Dictionary.com
black ( P ) Pronunciation Key (blk)
adj. black·er, black·est
Being of the color black, producing or reflecting comparatively little light and having no predominant hue.
Having little or no light: a black, moonless night.
often Black
Of or belonging to a racial group having brown to black skin, especially one of African origin: the Black population of South Africa.
Of or belonging to an American ethnic group descended from African peoples having dark skin; African-American.
Very dark in color: rich black soil; black, wavy hair.
Soiled, as from soot; dirty: feet black from playing outdoors.
Evil; wicked: the pirates’ black deeds.
Cheerless and depressing; gloomy: black thoughts.
Being or characterized by morbid or grimly satiric humor: a black comedy.
Marked by anger or sullenness: gave me a black look.
Attended with disaster; calamitous: a black day; the stock market crash on Black Friday.
Deserving of, indicating, or incurring censure or dishonor: “Man… has written one of his blackest records as a destroyer on the oceanic islands” (Rachel Carson).
Wearing clothing of the darkest visual hue: the black knight.
Served without milk or cream: black coffee.
Appearing to emanate from a source other than the actual point of origin. Used chiefly of intelligence operations: black propaganda; black radio transmissions.
Disclosed, for reasons of security, only to an extremely limited number of authorized persons; very highly classified: black programs in the Defense Department; the Pentagon’s black budget.
Chiefly British. Boycotted as part of a labor union action.

Given that there isn’t any racial group which is actually black, I really do wonder what right PC Malik thinks he has for exclusivity on the word ‘black’. It’s things like that which do more harm for racial harmony than good. Sadly, there is an army of like-minded people in the upper echelons of the police service who feel it is their duty to promote this kind of social engineering.

BBC News Link 

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