What do you say to the homophobic/racist things John Lennon has said?Present day political correctness is an ideological set of lenses which, if we choose to interpret the world through them, give us an excuse to demonize anyone we want to from the past. We can call Mark Twain, one of the most prominent pro-equality voices of his time a racist simply because he used the word ‘nigger’ in his antislavery masterpiece ‘Huckleberry Finn’, and demand book publishers censor it. We can call John Lennon racist or homophobic - if we choose - because we can play recordings of him making jokes in an Indian accent or using an effeminate voice.
But these judgements are literally meaningless, as you will not be able to find pretty much any other person living through the same time period that didn’t use the same language and share the same cultural sense of humour, which had no cultural stigma surrounding it at the time. Whereas, in the same period of time, using the word ‘fuck’ or even ‘Jesus Christ’ was considered shocking and could lose you your job and/or friendships amongst the ‘good’, ‘moral’ people.
So, unless the person in question took any of this behaviour to some very noticeable extremity - ie, organized lynch-mobs or campaigned to have gay people shot or whatever, it cannot actually mean anything, as there is no valid reference point from their time to compare their behaviour to.
As a thought experiment, imagine in 30 years time the words ‘black’ and ‘gay’ have been made taboo and are now universally reviled. Any writer from today who talked about ‘black people’ or ‘gay men’ would find their books either removed from school library shelves or released only in censored versions, with the future world ‘correct’ terms ‘coloured’ and ‘queer’ (or whatever) put in their place. Video footage of people using the offensive words - such as yourself - are rolled out only to show how evil a person you were, and if you are still alive, why everything you do should be boycotted.
Something like this actually will happen: it’s inevitable. As the old saying goes: “He who marries the spirit of his age becomes a widower in the next”.
Reality continues to exist beyond all the fashions of all ages and all perceptions shaped by ideology can only ever be temporary. People 50 years from now will be far more judgmental of the feminist and social justice mobs cruelly witch-hunting people today over amplified trivialities than they will be of the innocent folk they presently vilify.
Look to yourself and try consider what the very different future will think of your actions today. You won’t get to redo them, after all, and you can be sure all your excuses won’t be any excuse at all.