A question about being politically correct

Alright, so tonight I’m angry about something and that something is having to be politically correct.  I hate always worrying about being politically correct.  Our society ingrains in us at an early stage of development that we must always consider and pander to others feelings and beliefs and oftentimes hold them above our own.  Now, I believe in the Golden Rule just as much as the next girl, and I’m not saying that we should completely disregard the thoughts and feelings of others and purposely put them down. I’m not saying that at all.  My main gripe however is when this constant fear of offending someone actually becomes so restrictive that it starts to suffocate personal expression.  Now talking mainly in the context of art, should we as artists disregard this political correctness spider web our society is caught in? Or should we break free from it? How free should we break? All the way out or just a little so as not to offend anyone TOO much?  I feel that this is a legitimate problem for artists.  Should an artist express their opinion at the risk of both offending someone and/or recieving a public backlash?  My personal opinion is that we can’t please everyone and if we’re constantly worrying about how others will perceive our actions and censoring ourselves to make sure we don’t offend then what’s the point of having an opinion in the first place?  I realize that this is a sensitive issue with a fine line between freedom of speech and just being ugly to people for the sake of being ugly, which is why I’m posing this question for others to respond to.  So, what’s your opinion, which should we hold higher? Personal expression or political correctness?  You tell me.

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