So today's blog is a lecture. Just know going in that I am using my mom tone of voice on this one and that there is a "lesson" I am trying to impart. Also know that I am lecturing myself just as much as I am lecturing you.
How many times do you hear people saying that they are tired of the world being so "politically correct" or tired of how "overly sensitive" everyone is? Harden up. Grow a pair. QQ. It's all there online and in every day conversation. I do it too. I have been known to hear someone complaining about something in their life and reply with the eye roll, exasperated sigh and "If that's the worst thing you have ever had to deal with then you are pretty lucky." Or if someone is complaining about how hard a task they have to accomplish is I've been known to tell them to put on their big girl panties and deal with it. So I am not standing on a pedestal telling everyone else they need to behave here, I'm talking from the middle of the crowd.
So when you read that do you automatically think, hell yeah! Or do you think, you're kind of an asshole, Mr. Fry. Or is it someplace in the middle? I'm firmly in the middle.
I do think at times people wander around wanting to be offended. Yes, you read that right. They look for things to find offensive. They look for slights and insults and things that shock them. I am very practical in these sorts of matters. If you are offended by things like gay marriage then don't watch Modern Family. You can prevent seeing what you don't want to see and risk having your sensibilities wounded. There is an organization out there that polices television for all of us, they find things in shows that they find to be offensive and shocking and they rally their organization to file complaints to the FCC about the offense. Now the members of their group probably never saw the offensive material, nor would they ever have been offended about it if not directed to it by the organization, but now they are highly offended. These people I have no tolerance for. To these people I say stop looking for ways to be insulted! You are doing it to yourself and I don't need you to "protect" me. They will say they are doing it for "the children" which I also have no tolerance for. Parenting, everyone with a child should try it. It's not easy, but it's your damn job. (another blog, another topic, another lecture)
But then there is the other that happens. Someone makes a joke or a statement that is pretty offensive and when it's pointed out, "Hey, did you know that's pretty offensive?" they sit back and huff an puff and talk about how everyone expects you to be so "damn PC" these days! Well, if you are talking about practicing courtesy then yes, I expect you to be PC every day. And I will tell you that the times I am the most defensive myself is when I'm pretty sure I've probably done something wrong and I just don't want to face it. So instead of looking at why what I did might have truly been offensive to someone I decide that really they are the ones with the issue, not me.
I see it in political arguments. Both parts. The people that are just dying to find offense in what someone is saying and the people that really did do something offensive but refuse to acknowledge it. And sometimes it's just because of where you are coming from. You want to offend me? (and I say offend but what I really mean is piss me right the fuck off) Call me uppity when we are having a difference in opinions. Uppity is never ever used in any other way except to try and belittle the other person. Someone cannot be uppity if you view them as being on the same level as you can they? Just by calling someone uppity you are implying that you are above them and they are trying to overreach and get to your level. Other people might not view it that way. But I will. And I will call you out on it. And then you will say not to be so sensitive and I will realize that you are just an asshole who is going to defend your bad behavior so any further discussion is stopped. Just from a word.
And everyone has those words. Retard. That's one for me that I have to remind myself not to use. It was common growing up to call someone or something retarded if you didn't like it. Well as an adult I know that there are people that are very hurt hearing that word used like that. Casually. As an insult. They feel about it the same way I feel when I hear someone using the expression "That's so gay." Does it make me easily offended? Does it make them? Or does it mean we should all watch our phraseology (to quote the Music Man) a little more?
Now you are wondering about those that really do suffer from a lack of perspective in their lives. The ones who do really think that FML is the appropriate response to the grocery store line having more than 5 people in it...to them I say. Bless your heart. Because honestly, we've all had days like that. Where nothing has gone the way we want it to. The dishwasher leaked, the cell phone fell and broke, the car ran out of gas, the boss yelled at us and then we picked the slowest line in the grocery store when all we wanted was to get home with our pint of brownie bits in chocolate ice cream and eat ourselves in to a food coma. So at that point the 5 people in line does seem like just another slap on the day. And you saying that I need to harden up is just going to make my day worse. And possibly make you end up with a face full of ice cream depending on how close you are standing to me when you say it.
Now, if they are chronically bummed about the little things then yes, they need to stop QQing about it and move on with life. Make it better. But guess what? You telling them that they are too sensitive isn't going to stop them from being that way. And if it offends you that they whine about their day then....don't listen anymore. De-friend them or hide them so their status updates don't bum you out. Don't look for reasons to be offended, in other words.
Yes, I believe the world needs to be more PC. Positive and Caring. Practicing Courtesy. Productive in Communication. And you telling me how I shouldn't be offended by your offensive statement doesn't get us there any faster than me looking for things to be offended by does. And the next time you really want to lay in to someone for being overly sensitive about an issue, flip the script. Put yourself in their shoes with one of your issues. Imagine how it would feel to you if someone casually insulted something you believe in and then got mad when you pointed out that it was insulting. So take a deep breath next time you want to tell someone to lighten up and stop being so sensitive and think. And if you want to try and tell me that you never ever get insulted or offended, then please believe I will take that as a challenge. Just a reminder that my mom voice is a little different from other mom voices....
So I guess the summation of this blog (I know, it's a wandery one, give me a break it's a Saturday afternoon and I am feeling wandery) is don't get offended when someone points out that you were offensive. Instead of getting your back up and deciding that they have a problem, stop, think, figure out if maybe you were out of line and even if you wouldn't have been offended by it understand that they were. And then do better. And if you are the sort of person who finds offense at every corner, figure out why. What is really bugging you? What can you change in your life so that you can enjoy it a little more? Because we only get this shot at this life. It's up to you to make it the best you can.
Now HTFU or ease up, buddy, which ever the case may be and get out there and live the best life you can! No offense....