WE Scots don't really do political correctness and yet it certainly has a lot to answer for. Just when you think it can't get any worse – it does.
When I was asked the other day for my comment on re-naming the term "librarian" I wondered whether April fools day had come early. Sadly it hasn't, as this appears to have been a serious suggestion.
The idea is to change the title "librarian" to "audience development officer". Now, I have looked at this many times and I still can't remember it because it doesn't make sense. It hardly rolls off the tongue. And what on earth does it mean? Isn't an audience something you would see at a theatre or a cinema rather than in a library? All I seem to be able to remember are the initials "ADO" – much ADO about nothing I think!
In the past we've had "school dinner ladies" renamed "midday assistants" and "lollipop ladies" changed to "crossing officers". It is also apparently offensive to employees of the fairer sex working in our councils to use the term "Mrs" in case they feel it is age-discriminatory or are emotionally scarred by not having found the right man to marry. Ironically, there are many more examples featured in our politically correct scrapbooks which are actually stocked in some libraries – or should this be "Audience Development Venues"?
This constant changing of words and age-old phrases is irritating, a waste of time and money and, in some cases, a means of trying to control us by making us constantly think about the language we use.
For example, you can't say "black coffee" – you need to say "coffee without milk". "Manhole" is out and "personhole" is in.
I would like to re-name all those who come up with these ridiculous suggestions as "interfering politically correct overpaid salary-justifying busybodies who should go and get a proper job in the real world".
• Richard Cook is the Scottish Spokesman of the Campaign Against Political Correctness (www.capc.co.uk)