Friday, March 23, 2007

Multiculturalism Bans a Word

The word "purdah" has been banned by the Welsh Assembly lest it offend Muslims. The word has been in use in English for decades to refer to a period before an election in which the ruling party should not make announcements to influence the election. It derives from Persian where it refers to the separation of women from men, whether physically or through clothing.

The Welsh Assembly has insisted that the term not be used but be replaced with "pre-election period." However, they said that the ban was made last year and was because the new term was being used often anyway.

Conservative MP, David Davies, said:

This really is political correctness gone mad. Language is always evolving, and it should be obvious to everyone that the use of the term 'purdah' is not meant to be offensive or insulting.
This seems to me to be the latest example of white middle-class public sector employees imaging [sic] people will be offended when there is no evidence of that whatever. I would be very surprised if any Muslim group had complained.