The EU withdraws the guidelines and the right celebrates. But in the US, certain rules have been valid for years

The EU withdraws the guidelines and the right celebrates. But in the US, certain rules have been valid for years
The EU withdraws the guidelines and the right celebrates. But in the US, certain rules have been valid for years

by Carmelo Sant’Angelo

Christmas is safe again this year! The Grinch of Brussels has understood its true meaning. It was not thanks to Cindy Chi Lou, but to the Italian right, who softened the heart of the European Commission to the sound of bagpipes, shawls and flutes. The EU Commissioner for Equality, Helena Dalli, withdrew the guidelines for internal communication.

But what did this document say that was so terrible? First of all it had no impact on EU citizens, but directed the Brussels bureaucrats to use a politically correct canon of language. The content is the most banal and obvious for those who are familiar with operating in international contexts. These are the same rules as in the US have been valid for over a decade. For example, if you are addressing a lady whose marital status is unknown, it is preferable to use a generic “Ms” rather than “Mrs” or “Miss”. If you write to a promiscuous audience of colleagues, instead of starting with “kind ladies and gentlemen”, “dear colleagues” appears more hasty. If we refer to the Christmas holidays, it is better to wish “happy holidays”, because, for example, the Jewish colleague celebrates Chanukka at the same time.

On these trifles the right has managed to inundate, for two days, every information space, making believe that they were “stealing Christmas” and, on top of that, he also added the damnation of memory for the name of the Virgin. Obviously all false, but the media campaign has managed to credit the Italian right as the champion of Christianity. A sort of crusaders, albeit with a jacket impermeable to the suffering of migrants.

What happens, however, overseas? You immediately understand that the United States is a true multi-ethnic society as soon as you step on their plane. There are no more hostesses or stewards on board, only “flight attendants”. The attention to words is even moving, when to define a second-hand car they do not call it “pre-owned”, but “previously enjoyed” (previously enjoyed).

The controversy triggered on the European guidelines is, therefore, worthy only of those who have never put their nose out of Garbatella and have no international work experience.

Having said that, however, I would like to suggest a lot of caution with the “politically correct”, because it can claim victims. He knows something about it Doug Adler (but this is only the most striking case) a tennis reporter, former professional player. In 2017, at the Australian Open, during Venus Williams ‘match against Switzerland’s Stefanie Voegele, Adler was describing Williams’ aggressive play and called it “guerrilla effect”. Unfortunately, the term “guerrilla” has the same sound as “gorilla”, so the chronicler immediately ended up in the media pillory. Lighting the fuse was Ben Rothenberg, a freelancer covering the event for the New York Times, who recklessly tweeted that Adler had referred to the champion as “a gorilla” due to her African-American roots.

Espn, the television channel Adler worked for, asked him to apologize immediately live in order to keep his job. The next day, however, he fired him. The explanations of the interested party are useless, who in his defense argued that the “guerrilla effect” indicates an aggressive and exhausting game, conducted under the net. In his defense he also recalled a commercial for Nike in 1995, which defined the competitive rivalry between the two testimonials: Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras “Guerrilla Tennis”. His only consolation was the judicial recognition of the illegality of the dismissal, but his career also ended forever. His life was cut short by the hysteria of social media, which not even his employer could resist.

So be careful to blow on the ingenuity of the people with false news, because reactions are unpredictable. The flame of hatred blinds.

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