The Case Against Post-PC

A reader demurs:

One of your readers neatly summarized the Post-PC mindset: “if you offend everyone, you offend nobody”. This is in fact a deeply nihilistic attitude, and the popularity of Post-PC humor derives directly from the feeling of most people I know that the world is totally out of control. This sensibility holds at its core that offending everyone is acceptable and funny because nothing matters, nothing has any value, and the there is nothing which is beyond the pale. It is a very liberating outlook, because there is no need to examine your own attitudes or beliefs, because any action or statement is acceptable.

While I am no apologist for the ultra-sensitive PCistas, I believe that there are such things as right and wrong, whereas those who write Post-PC shows assert the opposite, or at least assert that those who try to demarcate right and wrong are clowns.

I don't dispute that some of the post-PC humor is a response to a sense that the world is spinning out of control. But I think it's not so much nihilism as the latest cultural adjustment to the astonishing diversity of modern life. It doesn't preclude the idea of right and wrong. It just brackets it, like much humor, while it laughs at our mutual differences. I think that's a sign of cultural health, not sickness. But then I'm a fan of modernity, which appears to be a lonelier position than it was only a short time ago.