Sunday, May 28, 2006

Playing Music the Way I Like It

Ever since the days of Marconi, people have been trying to find that one perfect radio station, the one that plays only the music they would play themselves.

Actually, Marconi’s radio transmitted nothing more than a series of blips and beeps with intermittent fuzz – kind of like modern day hip hop. In 1901, he succeeded in sending this signal wirelessly, across the Atlantic. Radio was born.

In the early days, there were very few stations. But even with the plethora of radio stations out there today, I seldom listen. And it goes back to the same age-old problem of not being able to find the right station for me.

I’ve come close. There is at least one station in Indianapolis that plays nothing but smooth jazz. I could listen to that kind of music all day, but even they throw in the occasional R & B song. I’m not fond of R & B.

I once wrote a column about how I used to fantasize about owning my own home jukebox. I could put in my collection of 45s and LPs and just push buttons to bring up my favorite songs in whatever order I wanted.

As it turns out, I can do that now with my computer. I have more than 1,800 songs residing on my hard drive and a program that allows me to play them, one after the other, in whatever order I want. I can pick and choose at will. And with a nice sound system connected to my computer, they sound pretty nice.

Thankfully, the same thing is happening to radio. Not to the over-the-air commercial stations, unfortunately, but to online radio.

For years, several online radio stations have existed that let you pick your genre. But I like several genres and I don’t like every song in any of them. So I still didn’t listen to much radio, even online.

Then, along came sites such as that let you rate the songs you like. Over time, it would start incorporating more songs from those genres and fewer songs from the genres of songs you rated low.

It worked better, but the stations would still throw in a lot of music that other people rated highly, in anticipation that I would like it, too. Typically, I did not. But it was still the best reasonable facsimile of my perfect radio station.

Recently I discovered the latest incarnation of listener-centric online radio. It’s called Pandora Radio at

It’s different in the way it interprets what songs you will like. It pays no attention to genre. It doesn’t care what other people like or have rated highly. It makes no difference to Pandora which songs are popular on regular radio stations or which ones are in the Billboard Top 40.

Pandora’s music experts have spent the last six years identifying the music genome of 200,000 songs. A music genome is kind of like a genetic blueprint. It is obtained by dissecting a piece of music and identifying its many parts. The experts have identified 400 of these so-called music genes.

When you pick a seed song and enter it into Pandora, or a seed artist, the program picks a song at random from the artist and analyzes its genetic make-up. It then adds 100 or so songs of similar genetic make-up to your play list.

You can fine tune your play list by giving each song that’s played thumbs up or thumbs down. If you give it thumbs up, the program will play it more often and play more songs like it. Thumbs down means the program will never play it again, and play songs like it less often.

It’s still not perfect, because those who created the genome, although supposedly experts in their field, still used subjective criteria. And it still sometimes confuses jazz with R & B. But it comes as close as could be expected to allowing me to create the ideal radio station for my taste in music.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Farmer's Highway Lawsuit Derailed by Judge

Indiana, the Crossroads of America, has been in a transportation predicament for several years. The state doesn’t have enough money to fund dozens of important road projects that are stuck in limbo, but desperately needed.

One of the most needed of these projects is the extension of I-69 from Indianapolis to Evansville. Wrangling has been ongoing for two decades over the proposed route, environmental concerns, and how to pay for it.

But earlier this year Gov. Mitch Daniels came up with a plan and presented it to the Indiana General Assembly. His plan was to lease the Indiana Toll Road that cuts across northern Indiana and use that instant revenue stream to fund the other road projects in the state, including I-69.

After the obligatory legislative debate Hoosier lawmakers decided the plan was a good one, so they put their stamp of approval on it. The lease would be for a term of 75 years and would infuse almost $4 billion into the state’s economy immediately to be used for other road projects.

But in April a Greene County farmer, Steve Bonney and six others backed by the Citizen’s Action Coalition, filed a lawsuit in St. Joseph County claiming the lease deal violated several provisions of the state’s constitution.

Last week Judge Michael Scopelitis threw out most of the plaintiffs’ claims, falling just short of calling the lawsuit frivolous. He did leave open the possibility of future legal action on charging tolls on I-69 and on part of its route that has been highly contested. He said those questions had nothing to do with the lease agreement for the toll road.

Bonney, however, seemed unfazed by the judge’s reproach. He immediately threatened an appeal to the Indiana Supreme Court. He is faced with deadlines, however. He has 10 days to file an appeal and also to post a court-ordered $1.9 billion bond in order to continue the suit.

The lease, which is to become effective June 30, is vital to the transportation future of the state. Indiana has been dragging its feet for decades over building the I-69 extension. The project is part of a federal plan to encourage free trade among the United States, Canada, and Mexico. When finished I-69 would be a major north-south route running from border to border. Several states are well on their way to completing segments of the freeway running through those states.

But, apparently, Bonney doesn’t care much about the big picture. All that matters to him is that the proposed path for I-69 cuts through his farm. He knows that eminent domain laws are not on his side, so he and his allies decided to attack the funding.

If he is eventually successful, which seems doubtful, he will have forced the forfeiture of billions of dollars in highway projects across the state, put the brakes on an important freeway extension project, and seriously upset the timeline for completion of that project. And, in return for his efforts, he would get to keep his farm intact.

Somehow, it doesn’t seem like a fair trade-off for the other five million residents of this state who are waiting for roads in their sections of the state to be improved, or for the nation as a whole, who would benefit from increased trade and more efficient transportation of goods if I-69 is extended.

I don’t blame anyone for looking out for their own interests. But at some point, the interests of the people at large must become paramount. In almost any project there are trade-offs. The governmental units in charge of planning must balance the good and the bad. There must always be a cost-benefit analysis.

If the overall benefits for society outweigh the cost and inconvenience of a few individuals, then such projects must be given the thumbs-up. In the case of a few scattered farmers against all the road projects in the state that would be put on hold, including the Free-Trade Freeway, the cost-benefit ratio isn’t even close.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Edinburgh's Mall Needs Theater

Wouldn’t it be nice to go see a movie without having to go out of town?

Like almost everyone else in the world I went to see “The Da Vinci Code” over the weekend. This column isn’t meant to be for movie reviews, and I won’t give one here. But this is a film I was really rooting for.

It was expected to have a big opening, what with all the hype. And it actually exceeded expectations, the first film of the year to do so. The big test will be whether it can hold on to its big numbers in subsequent weeks.

Why was I rooting for it to succeed? I guess mainly because I wanted the public at large to give a giant raspberry to all the church groups who wanted to see it banned or boycotted. But, also, because I like it when any popular medium makes people think about what they believe. It’s good for them.

So now that I’ve gotten my mini-review out of the way, let me change gears a bit and get back to my original thought.

Although I thought the movie was awesome, with lots of action and even more mind-boggling intrigue, what would have made it even better is if Edinburgh residents didn’t have to go out of town to see it.

In most cities, there are movie theaters with 14, 16, even 20 screens. Edinburgh used to have a theater with one screen, but not any longer. But now that we have a major mall, shouldn’t it also have a theater?

I don’t know what the Simon Company has in mind ultimately, but if its long-range plans call for a multi-screen movie theater, that would be outstanding. People come from many miles away to visit our mall. Mall-goers often want to do more than just shop, especially if they have traveled quite a distance.

Amenities such as lots of restaurants, a food court, and entertainment venues such as an arcade and a movie theater are essential to the growth and development of a mall. Edinburgh Premium Outlets recently experienced a substantial growth phase. Unfortunately, a theater was not part of that expansion.

I’ve read recently that outside malls, such as Edinburgh’s, are becoming more popular at the expense of the larger, enclosed, regional malls. At first, that puzzled me. Who would want to go outside in whatever kind of weather that’s out there to go from shop to shop when they could remain inside a climate-controlled, protected environment and do the same thing?

But the reasons given do make sense. Outside malls offer more convenience, in the same sense that neighborhood quick marts are more convenient, although more expensive, than supermarkets.

Especially for shoppers who have one thing in mind, it’s easier to park, perhaps with a view of your target store in site. And you generally don’t have to walk as far. It’s quicker. And when the weather is nice, it’s even more enjoyable to go outside.

So Edinburgh’s mall is trendy. It’s popular. And it draws customers from all over the place. What would make it much better, though, is if it had a movie theater.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

English as an Official Language?

The Bush administration has shown yet again that its right hand doesn’t keep track of everything its left hand does. Last Friday, Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez reacted to the Senate’s passage of an immigration bill amendment that would make English a national language and direct the government to preserve and enhance the role of the language in this country. A separate amendment to the bill also called English the unifying language of the United States.

“The president has never supported making English a national language,” Gonzalez said while meeting with state officials in Texas last week. He didn’t say whether or not his boss supports the current amendment because he’s waiting for the Senate to vote on the entire immigration bill. Passage is expected this month.

The House has already passed a version of the bill calling for stricter enforcement. The two bills differ markedly and it is expected that a radically different version of the bill will be finalized in conference committee.

Gonzalez apparently was tripped up by semantics. Although Bush has indicated he opposes adopting English as the official language of the United States, the president does support making it a national language.

“We have no problem in identifying English, our common linguistic currency as a national language; we also view it more expansively as the common and unifying language,” said White House spokesperson Dana Perino.

It seems like splitting hairs, but in the world of legalese and government policy, hairs are often split pretty thin.

The lack of an official language for the country hasn’t stopped many states from addressing the issue on their own. At least 23 states, including Indiana, now recognize English as their official state language.

Many people don’t know that English is the official language of Indiana. The state passed legislation in 1984 adopting English as the state’s official language. It also recognizes American Sign Language as a bona fide separate language.

Linguistics aside, the official immigration policy of the United States has become an emotional, hot-button issue for both political parties. Immigrants have staged massive, but generally peaceful, demonstrations in cities across the country.

The biggest issue is whether or not to grant expedited citizenship to the 12 million immigrants who are presently in the country illegally. The Senate bill would do so, and Pres. Bush backs such a measure. The House bill, however, does not contain such language and most House Republicans oppose it.

Granting expedited citizenship to millions of illegal aliens would seem not to be very fair to all those immigrants who jumped through the legal hoops to obtain their citizenship properly. On the other hand, deporting those millions of aliens so that they can begin the process of returning to this country through proper channels seems to be a logistical impossibility.

Multitudes of minimum-wage jobs would be left vacant if the illegal workers are displaced. It would lead to chaos in the workplace and lost productivity for thousands of employers, especially those in the agricultural and food industries.

In the mean time, different versions of the immigration bill would address the border issue in different ways. Should we build a 2000-mile-long, 20-foot-tall wall along the Mexican border to stem the flow of illegal aliens? Or should we simply add more border guards?

Bush said in a TV address last week that he will use the National Guard to temporarily assist border patrols. Some worry that the Guard is already stretched too thinly, with conflicts persisting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

There probably isn’t a perfect compromise. But passing a law that would address the border issue first would seem to make the most sense. We need to lock down the border as tightly as possible, whether it is with a large fence, more patrols, or an as-yet-to-be-determined high-tech solution.

After the border is under control, it would then be the most logical approach to allow those who are already here to stay as long as they learn English, fill out all the paperwork, and stay out of trouble.

No, it wouldn’t really be fair to all those who have already gained citizenship legally, or to those who are in the process of doing so. But it’s the most pragmatic solution when looking at the big picture.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

My Thoughts about God

I think about religion and spirituality a lot. And by a lot, I mean several times a day. It seems to be always on my mind these days. I guess I’m just trying, in my own way, to figure things out.

I mean, I know for certain what I believe about organized religion. It sucks! It has been the single greatest obstacle to human advancement. It has caused more wars, the greatest number of genocides, and has been a bigger contributor to bigotry than any other factor in human history.

So what if people take comfort in their religions. Without religion, they would find something else to take comfort it. So what if it has produced some of the best and most artistic architecture in the world. Great architecture is nice, but we don’t really need it. Besides, there might have been other reasons to create nice buildings even if religion were never a factor.

And what about morality? I contend that religion grew out of morality, not vice versa. If you read the bible, specifically the New Testament, you are told of all the noble, moral acts of Jesus Christ. But you recognize right away that Jesus is exhibiting moral behavior. It is already in you to understand how to treat people. Most atheists are just as moral as most Christians, except without the hypocrisy.

And, speaking of atheists, I sometimes think about how to pigeonhole myself. It’s difficult to do. I certainly am not an atheist; they are far too certain of themselves, much like Christians.

I don’t really call myself an agnostic either. The word means “without knowledge.” I certainly don’t have a lot of knowledge about spiritual matters, but the term is too loose. It doesn’t add enough information about what I believe or why I believe it.

I might better fit with people who call themselves rationalists or secular humanists. But even so, I am reluctant to pigeonhole my spirituality or my philosophy of life. If pressed, I usually just call myself a freethinker.

So, in my free time, as I grow pensive about religion and why many people seem to need it, I am often struck by the irony of how those who are intelligent enough to wield great power, either in government or business, so often don’t think twice about believing in supernatural explanations of natural phenomena.

I hesitate to call Pres. Bush a smart man, but let’s face it; he was smart enough to become the most powerful political leader in the world. Yet he is an evangelical Christian who apparently believes in the biblical account of Creation. Hasn’t he ever just sat back and thought to himself, “Hey, this stuff about Adam and Eve, the serpent, Noah’s Ark, and a man getting eaten by a whale and surviving just doesn’t make a lot of sense.”

And anyone who knows much about history knows that the bible was canonized by committee. When has a committee of lawyers ever done anything that we could put our trust and faith in? But that’s who compiled the bible as we know it, a bunch of Catholic bishop lawyers who were working under a strict deadline set by Emperor Constantine. I’m sure they gave it a lot of thought, but still one has to wonder how much important stuff they left out and how much junk they included.

A product of my ponderings has been the categorization of faith. It takes a lot of faith to believe the bible, especially the good parts. There is virtually no independent corroboration.

So I think that faith can be divided into three types. First, there is innocent faith. It is the faith of a child, and also the faith that people retain as adults when they haven’t learned that faith is an illusion. Generally, people with less formal education who have not traveled far from where they were born and who are quite happy with a simple life have this kind of faith. My mom has this kind of faith and it is probably the most genuine.

The second kind of faith is the kind you have when you’re afraid not to. People who are well-traveled and more highly educated, but who still really want to believe that there is a heaven they can go to when they die have this kind of faith. They know, down deep, that having faith is not logical. But they fool themselves into believing because what if there really is a hell. They know they don’t want to go there. And they know that, according to Christian dogma, by default you go to hell. So they live a deceptive life, going to church, going through the motions, telling themselves and others that they believe – and hoping God doesn’t notice.

Then there is the third type of faith. It is the faith of epiphany. It is owned by those who have had a turning point or milestone in their lives that have caused them to have faith, maybe when they really didn’t before. Maybe they were wrenched from the jaws of death, or maybe they witnessed what they believed was some kind of miracle. Whatever the reason, they now believe in their religion because of their great epiphany.

When I was a child, I had faith number one. As I grew to be an adult, and throughout much of my adult life, I became aware that the stories of the bible couldn’t be literally true. I rationalized my faith, not wanting to lose it out of fear of losing my soul. My faith had become type two.

I hope I never have type three. I don’t want to go through that kind of trauma. But perhaps, if God exists, he chooses people he wants to invite into heaven, and traumatizing them is his way of choosing.

In the end, my ponderings about religion haven’t led to many epiphanies. But here is what I am pretty sure of: I don’t know the mind of God. I know that nobody else knows the mind of God, even though they may think they do. If I don’t know something, and don’t have much evidence that it exists, it’s hard for me to believe in it or have faith in it. If God wanted us to follow the bible, he would have made it much clearer and more understandable. If there is a God, he must be very disappointed in every religion we humans have made up about Him. And finally, the pristine logic of the universe makes me lean toward believing that a force we call God does exist in some form. There is nothing in science that rules him out.

And so, where does that leave me? It leaves me with more stuff to ponder. If I’m willing to take the leap of faith that God does exist, then I’m forced to ask myself, “What is His nature and what, if anything, does He want of me?”

I’m certainly not willing to fall in line behind some bible-thumping evangelist to get my answers. But that’s ok; I enjoy my pensive moments.

Will Rationality Overcome Religion?

Sam Harris, author of the provocative book “The End of Faith,” is often called a leading atheist. But he doesn’t like to call himself that. He doesn’t understand why people who do not believe in religion have to have a label.

For example, there are those who make everyday decisions based on the pseudoscience of astrology, the belief that the position of the planets and stars can somehow affect destiny. These people read their daily horoscopes and make decisions accordingly.

But what about the more rational people who do not believe in horoscopes? Maybe they read them occasionally for entertainment only, but they would never make any decisions based on what their horoscopes say. Do the non-astrology-believing people have a label?

No, they do not. So why should people who choose not to believe in God or religion have a label? That was one of Harris’ points at the World Conference of Secular Humanism where he was a guest speaker.

But on a more pragmatic level, in his book and in his conference address, Harris isn’t so much worried about semantics as he is about theocracies and organized religion in general. His controversial position is that, when it comes to violence based on faith, religious moderates are actually part of the problem.

Harris doesn’t focus on a single religion; he believes they are all more dangerous than they are helpful. And even moderates who do not believe in violence contribute by relaxing standards of reasonableness and evidence that they would never consider doing with non-faith issues.

He has a valid point. Consider the row that developed back in the 1980s when it became public that Pres. Ronald Reagan’s wife, Nancy, relied on her and the president’s horoscopes to make certain decisions. She even had a paid astrologer to advise her.

Public backlash was harsh and quick. She became the butt of jokes for late-night comedians. Eventually, she came forward to say she did not use her astrologer’s advice to influence presidential decisions, but who really knows for sure.

The point is, when a president publicly admits that he prays to the Christian God for guidance on matters of national security, nobody reacts. That’s probably because far more people in this country are Christians than astrologers.

Either way, however, the most powerful man in the world is relying on some unproven mystical entity or influence to help him make his decisions that may affect people globally.

One of Harris’ most profound observations is that the situation where one ethnic or religious group pits itself against the others is self-perpetuating simply by the labels people choose to apply to themselves: Christian, Jew, Muslim, etc. “People have morally identified with a subset of humanity rather than with humanity as a whole,” he said at the conference.

He’s right, of course, when you consider that throughout history more people have been killed in the name of God than for any other reason. Even God himself, in the Old Testament, is a wrathful creature who commands his followers to slaughter entire cities, to stone people, and to kill people who work on the Sabbath. The Koran, Islam’s holy book, is filled with violent messages of hate, but it pales in comparison to some of the books of the Old Testament.

Of course, cleansing this country of its religiosity won’t be easy. It may be impossible, at least in the short run. For example, many people in America who consider themselves patriots believe that the Founding Fathers were all religious and mostly Christian.

There are arguments on both sides of that issue. But whether it’s true or not is irrelevant. Why should it make any difference to people today what religion, if any, the founders of this nation subscribed to? Many of them believed slavery was justifiable. Thomas Jefferson owned slaves. So why do we believe today that slavery is deplorable?

The answer, of course, is that rationality has taught us better. Slavery is deplorable, regardless of what our Founding Fathers thought of it.

Harris’ question, and mine, is how long will it take before rationality overcomes religion, too? With the religious right working to turn the U.S. into a theocracy, I’m not going to hold my breath.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Many Parents Want Schools to Allow Cell Phones

In “A Christmas Story,” a classic Christmas film based on a short story by the late Hoosier humorist Jean Shepherd there is a scene where Ralphie’s teacher confiscates a bunch of fake teeth from the class. She places them in a drawer that has all sorts of noise makers and paraphernalia that used to be in a child’s arsenal of things they could use to torment the teacher.

In some ways things haven’t changed too much. Kids still bring yo-yos, high-bounce balls, and rubber bands. But, thanks to technology, kids have a whole new collection of contraband they can sneak into the classroom.

These include portable CD players, iPods, and cell phones.

But many parents support the ability of their children to take the latter device to school, although most schools still ban it. The reason is safety, as well as parental convenience.

In New York City, where the use of metal detectors has netted hundreds of cell phones, many parents, teachers, and even city lawmakers are lobbying the city’s school system to permit students to bring cell phones to school.

The Mayor and school superintendent, however, are still opposed to the idea. They say students can use cell phones as entertainment devices in classrooms, much like mp3 players. Or, more nefariously, phones can be used to take clandestine locker room pictures or even to cheat on tests.

While it’s true that students can make use of cell phones in inappropriate ways during school hours, it is that behavior which should be punished when and if it happens. Simply having a cell phone while at school causes no disruption or distraction.

When my son was going to Edinburgh High School, I provided him with a beeper. A portable cell phone was too expensive for most students in those days. But I needed a way to contact him when school was out. We had code numbers for various messages.

The school had a policy against pagers and similar devices, but I asked and received permission from the principal at the time for him to carry it with him as long as he kept it turned off during class.

Today, I’m a teacher. The vast majority of my seventh graders have cell phones. If I see one of them with it out in class I give them one warning to put it away and then I confiscate it if I see it again. If one of the students actually uses the cell phone in class, I confiscate it right away.

As a teacher, it I can see cell phones as just another piece of contraband we have to watch out for. But as a parent, I can clearly see the safety benefits of kids having them at school.

Students can use them to call their parents if there is a change of plans, if the buses are running late, or for any number of good reasons. Parents can keep tabs on their youngsters by giving them a call if they are late getting home or to ask them to pick up something from the store on the way home.

In New York schools, and in most school systems that still ban the devices, enforcement of the ban is often minimal. As long as kids aren’t using them in class, most teachers and even administrators will allow students to carry them.

Still, it’s time for school boards to realize that cell phones can be life savers. In emergency situations quick action is needed. Students with phones can provide that quick action by calling 911.

In a time when parents worry about the safety of their children even while at school, cell phones can provide a little bit of peace of mind. If students abuse their privilege, they should be dealt with accordingly. But to ban cell phones outright is no longer a prudent school policy.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

PC Mantra: Do Not Offend

When I was in college, back in the 1970s, the term politically correct was not used. It might have been around, but there certainly wasn’t a political correctness movement. We simply used common sense when referring to those who were different from the majority population.

Since the early 1980s, the terms political correctness, politically correct, or PC have been used by various political factions, both liberal and conservative, to either promote their own agendas, or to attack the agendas of their counterparts. The term’s first widespread use apparently occurred during Pres. Ronald Reagan’s first term and was described by conservatives as a political correctness movement promoted by the democrats.

It is arguable whether or not there ever has been an actual “movement.” But starting in the late 1990s, the more liberal college campuses started pushing political correctness to the point where conservatives accused them of suppressing freedom of speech. You know it’s a complex and convoluted issue when conservatives cry foul on freedom of speech concerns.

Private colleges, of course, may enforce whatever manner of doublespeak requirements they wish on their students and faculty. But public colleges and universities should not.

There are plenty of examples, some perhaps exaggerated, of public universities crossing the boundary of free speech by enforcing the use of certain terms designed not to offend any minority group. Not long after matriculation, students become indoctrinated with the use of correct terminology, and those who do not comply may be disciplined.

There are even political correctness consultants that universities can hire, for an exorbitant fee, who will come in and tell the administration what it can do to increase diversity and decrease instances of intolerant speech.

It sounds good, but ultimately setting speech standards will lead to less diversity where it counts, diversity of thought.

The most popular recruitment catchword that many public universities use these days is diversity. There’s nothing wrong with having a diverse campus. It’s a positive thing. But in their attempts not to offend ethnic groups, women, minorities, and the disabled, many institutions establish and enforce the use of certain terms in place of others.

The phrase “differently abled” replaces the term disabled, for example. African-American replaces black, even though the vast majority of blacks have never even been to Africa. And “first-year student” replaces freshman, because the latter appears not to be gender-neutral enough.

Other examples include the use of chairperson instead of chairman, line worker instead of lineman, Native American in place of Indian, and maintenance cover instead of manhole cover. Most politically correct terms tend to have more syllables and be more difficult to pronounce than their ostensibly more offensive alternatives.

There are even how-to guides that help incoming freshmen learn how to be more politically correct in college. The Web site has such a do-and-don’t list.

But compulsory political correctness on campuses tends to reduce diversity of thought by turning students into sheep who must comply with the university’s official ideological slant. On some liberal campuses, political correctness has gained an almost cult-like status.

Let’s face it; different people are offended by different things. Vegans may be offended by hamburgers; meat producers may be offended by vegans. Conservative Christians may be offended by tolerance; I’m offended by fundamentalists trying to enlighten me with the “truth.” But, especially in a place of higher learning, offending someone with intellectual discussion about taboo subjects is not always a bad thing.

College is a place of tolerance and diversity, but it is also a place for the free flow of ideas, even if those ideas may be offensive to some. People get offended all the time, but they tend to get over it.

Political correctness has become the fodder of comedians and satirists. That’s where it belongs. It deserves to be made fun of. There is no place for obligatory euphemisms on public college campuses.