Do You Feel Lucky?

(and feel free to comment! My older posts are certainly no less relevant to the burning concerns of the day.)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Are You Personally Offended? Good! Excellent!

Can we maybe find some tactful way to tell people to fuck off about objecting to things that "might offend other people"?

Anybody who speaks up for his or her own self, "this offends me!" - I respect that, regardless of how I feel on the issue at hand. More than respecting their right to have a stance, I want to hear their reasons why. It's paramount in any case where something is declared offensive, to hear the reasoning. A person with the courage to declare they have been offended has had a chance to see and judge for him or herself that something is offensive. We must hear their reasoning! We must hear it, so we can then judge: "is this too offensive? Is this 'something we don't want'?" We need to hear and judge whether the nature of the stated offense overrides the interest of others who may also wish to see and judge. For themselves. Any time anyone is willing to be an adult, to stand up for their own self, and to take personal offense - we need to hear them out.

Yet on behalf of us all, we must also urge upon them the necessity of treating others as if they, too, are capable of being adults - and making judgments.

All of this is a far cry from the person who stands up to say "well I myself was not offended, but I'm concerned that others might be." Well, no. Incorrect. You are not concerned. Do not intrude your offense where you are not concerned. Your attitude desperately needs an enema. Your stance has neither nobility nor compassion: it is condescension, and I would say "pure condescension" but for the glaring ulterior motive involved. You seek only to control others: what they say and what they see, and yet you pass it off as a desire to protect them.

Well, speaking as one of those others who "might be" offended, I find the suggestion that you could possibly be offended on my behalf to be a rank insult to my intelligence, to my judgment, and to my autonomy. I am an adult. I have been an adult since I was seven damn years old. I didn't need your intrusion then, and I don't need it now. And oh yes, believe me I do get offended! When I do, it is on my own behalf. When I am offended, you better believe I do not insult others with the notion that my concern ought to outrank their own! When I am offended, I own it, and I own up to it. I will weigh the offense myself, and if it is offensive to me I will say: it is offensive to me. I am not a moron or a coward: I am capable of taking my own offense. But if I felt I had to take offense on behalf of another, it could only be because that person is a moron, or a coward.

No. False. I refuse to belief that any person on earth needs or can be helped by this kind of service from me - or from you. Your false concern will not benefit those on whose behalf you claim to be concerned. So please, if you're personally offended, say so - and say why. But if you're not personally offended, shut it. Don't give me this "concerned that others might be."

Instead, how about you give others (me, and everybody else) the same credit you give yourself? The credit to make the call as to whether a thing is offensive. The freedom to say "I myself am not personally offended," and then let that be that. To let the next person make their own call. Maybe they won't be offended either. Give them the chance to be as big as you are. As open-minded. To have a sense of humor, or even just a sense of scope as to what human beings in this day and age should be outraged about.

I, along with many, many of my compatriots, AM OTHERS. Don't speak for us. Don't presume to speak for any others not yourself. Our call is not yours to make.


Mel said...

In the magical meta nirvana where I often let my mind wander, I’m imaging a reader taking offense (nay, certifiable umbrage I tells ya) at this post, not because they were personally affronted by your argument, but on behalf of other peoples’ sensitivities they feel will be violated by your verbal thrust and parry on this topic.

VEG said...

You know, if I was a Facebook type of gal I'd even "like" this.

If it didn't offend me so damn much.

Sorry. Joking on a serious post, what a bitch.

On a more serious note I try to remember this. I am only responsible for my own opinion and feelings not someone else's.

Also? What Mel said (Hey Mel!). That girl knows ALL the big words.

dogimo said...

Mel's marxist-feminist dialectic brings all the boys to the yard.

Mel said...

Ha! Indeed... but they stay for the free "This Is What A Feminist Looks At" tee.

P.S. Hi V.A!

VEG said...

Hi there miss M! And hey Joe. Let's take over Joe's blog chatting. I like that. No, I feel like we're all having a nice chat over good coffee. I brought cake!

More on topic, so many things are fine in my book that might offend some other person with delicate constitution, but I can't help that. If it's fine by me, it's fine.