I’ve recently come to the conclusion that, very often, bashing those who take offense to anything is the lazy man’s edgy. If you’re on Facebook, and you have friends on Facebook, you most certainly have seen stupid memes complaining about people who get offended at, well, it’s never clear really, probably whatever the poster is attached to that offends people. Occasionally people do take offense to something benign, or something provocative that disturbs their worldview. However, more often than not the poster is upset that whatever racist or sexist thing they like is no long socially acceptable and they, rather than say the racist/sexist/ (pick an ist or phobic) thing, they complain about weak people taking offense.
The June 17 shooting of nine people in a church in Charleston, SC reignited the movement to get the Confederate Battle Flag of Virginia (lest some asshole decides to give me the line “well, actually, that’s not the Confederate flag” bullshit) removed from the State Capital building. One side of the debate were those who said that it’s a symbol of slavery and racism because it was always traditionally displayed by slavers and racists and has no place on government buildings, and others on that same side pointed out that the flag that was used in an armed insurrection against the United States of America has no place on government buildings. The other side of the debate are the some of the most clueless people walking the Earth right now. They said it’s their heritage. I suppose you could say that, but not a heritage that any right minded human should be proud of. They said it stands for Southern Pride. Again, why? They said the flag didn’t cause that stupid asshole to shoot up the church. We said, yes, you’re right, but the inherent racism in our society that allowed the flag to be displayed in the first place certainly contributed to the murders. To which the opposition said, “Well, shit. Free speech and stop being offended and where’s my sexy sibling!” Either way, they lost and the flag was taken down.
Since then the Facebook people polished up their clickin’ finger and proceeded to passive-aggressively whine about it by posting the offended people memes and the false equivalency memes and the what the fuck are you talking about memes. Below are some of my favorites.
This is what passed for dialogue for some people. I always picture some knuckle-dragging yokel seeing these memes and going “fuckin’ A right!”
I know some of you out there might be picturing legions of uptight liberals sitting at home being outraged about everything that you hold dear, and I’m sure those people exist. Most of them are at Universities blocking anything that slightly challenges their second semester worldview. Most of the time, however, it’s people going “you know, my grandmother was beaten up by people carrying that flag, and her grandfather was burned alive by people carrying that flag, so how about we don’t put it on government buildings?” Some people are just too sensitive I guess.
None of this is to say that I think it’s wrong to offend people. But it should be thoughtfully done with some idea of why you’re doing it. Some might find vocal atheism offensive, but I have a reason for it and I’ll stand by everything I say. And I realize that I wrote something rather offensive earlier when I suggested that everyone who supports Robert E. Lee’s Confederate Battle Flag of the Army of Northern Virginia (happy, nerds?) has sex with their siblings. Please understand that the only reason I wrote that is because everyone who supports the Confederate flag has sex with their siblings. I’m glad we had this talk.