During a Today Show segment about the greeting card company Hallmark coming under fire for a new Christmas ornament, the hosts wondered “Are we too PC?”
The “ugly sweater” ornament uses lyrics from the Christmas song “Deck the Halls,” but edits out the word gay and instead replaces it with “fun.”
The ornament reads, “Don we now our fun apparel,” instead of “Don we not our gay apparel,” and apparently some aren’t too happy about it.
Critics have called the edited version of the sweater “homophobic,” but the company says it meant no harm. An initial statement by Hallmark said the word “gay” could be “open to misinterpretation,” but the company later updated its statement saying it was surprised by the public’s reaction.
“We’ve been surprised at the wide range of reactions expressed about the change of lyrics on this ornament, and we’re sorry to have caused so much concern,” the statement read. “We never intend to offend or make political statements with our products and in hindsight, we realize we shouldn’t have changed the lyrics on the ornament.”
During the segment, the guests—Robert DeNiro, Kevin Klein, Michael Douglas, and Morgan Freeman—all agreed that our society is far too PC, and both Hallmark and its critics are wrong.
When asked about his thoughts on whether or not our society is too PC, Freeman said, “We have a tendency to do that. You get politically correct stuff happen that you don’t want to happen. I all of a sudden became an African. Political correctness, African American. I’m not African.”
Political correctness has pervaded our culture in the past, but the times seem to be changing. Increasingly, people are freely expressing themselves via blogs, social media, and the mainstream media. When it comes to companies, however, many are still choose the least offensive option.
But should they?