Republican presidential candidate Ben CarsonBen CarsonRepublicans are the 21st-century Know-Nothing Party Sunday shows preview: Delta concerns prompt CDC mask update; bipartisan infrastructure bill to face challenges in Senate Government indoctrination, whether 'critical' or 'patriotic,' is wrong MORE says political correctness is the greatest moral threat currently facing the nation, calling it a form of “intimidation.”
“It’s used as a control mechanism, and it’s used for intimidation,” Carson said Friday night at the Presidential Family Forum in Iowa, according to the Des Moines Register.
“It’s actually very antithetical to the very principles of the foundation of this country,” he added.
“I think it’s our willingness to adopt political correctness, and that causes us to throw away the values and principles that have made us into a great country.”
Several other candidates joined Carson in criticizing political correctness, during an event that was occasionally interrupted by protests, first on immigration and later on animal rights.
“The best answer to political correctness is speaking the truth,” Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by National Industries for the Blind - Schumer: Dem unity will happen eventually; Newsom prevails The Memo: Like the dress or not, Ocasio-Cortez is driving the conversation again Ocasio-Cortez defends attendance of Met Gala amid GOP uproar MORE (R-Texas) said. “Why do these protesters want to stand up and scream? Stand up and disrupt? Because they can’t handle the truth.”
Cruz blamed universities, where various protests over racial justice have recently erupted around the country, for inundating their students with the idea that they have been severely oppressed.
“We’re seeing universities all around this country with leftist, coddled kids, usually with trust funds, protesting against the horrible oppression … because ‘I heard a word that scared me,’ ” he said.
Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioOvernight Defense & National Security — Milley becomes lightning rod Joint Chiefs Chairman Milley becomes lightning rod on right GOP senators unveil bill designating Taliban as terrorist organization MORE (R-Fla.) said President Obama is willing to tell Americans not to smoke or overeat, but won’t encourage stable marriages and families because of political correctness.
“There’s nothing wrong with a president saying don’t get divorced because it’s bad for children, bad for the family,” Rubio said.
Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulSenate lawmakers let frustration show with Blinken Rand Paul: 'Hatred for Trump' blocking research into ivermectin as COVID-19 treatment Masks and vaccines: What price freedom? MORE (R-Ky.) linked political correctness to the abortion debate, saying the anti-abortion-rights movement can’t be “afraid of political correctness.”
“We’re going to make them defend that seven-pound babies have no rights the minute before they’re born,” Paul said.
Former businesswoman Carly Fiorina said political correctness is used to “control” debate and discourage people from discovering the truth.
“It’s not just that people don’t want to have a conversation about why they differ, it is that there is control over what is perceived to be true or not,” Fiorina said.
She added that it’s the role of the president “to explain to people what is actually happening.”
The forum, moderated by pollster Frank Luntz, was also attended by former Sen. Rick Santorum and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee. Donald Trump, who currently holds a narrow lead in Iowa according to a RealClearPolitics polling average, did not attend.