May 16, 2011
In the wonderful new world that’s being lovingly sculpted by the nice people who know what’s best for us, peace on Earth will apparently never come until everyone everywhere is either offended or apologizing all the time.
This eternal cycle of grievance and repentance, most of it revolving around ever-multiplying subsets of atomized socio-cultural identities, is self-perpetuating, smackably annoying, and utterly unnecessary. So long as no one gets stabbed, there’s absolutely no need for everyone to accept, embrace, and honor everyone else’s beliefs, lifestyles, melanin levels, genital configurations, and carnal indulgences. “Live and let live,” as they say—yes? Freedom of association—right? Keep your meddlesome snout out of everyone else’s personal business, and for the sake of public mental hygiene, don’t act as if your personal business is society’s burden to bear. Only infants and toddlers insist that everyone has to accept them. If someone doesn’t love you just the way you are, here’s a radical idea: Don’t hang out with them. If they said something that hurt your feelings, scratch them off your Christmas-card list immediately. I don’t understand why further measures would ever be needed.
Many politicians and civil lawyers don’t see it that way. There’s money to be made with hurt feelings, so they’ve cultivated an infantilized new generation of diaper-wearing wah-wah babies taking umbrage and acting touchy and feeling put-upon if someone so much as bats their eyelashes at them in a manner they deem insensitive. If Martians were to land tonight, they’d look around, shrug, say, “What a bunch of fags,” and then leave.
If only to reestablish a healthy sense of equilibrium and maintain the natural order, such hypersensitivity seems to beg for a reciprocal level of mocking.
“If someone doesn’t love you just the way you are, here’s a radical idea: Don’t hang out with them.”
What follows are my carefully selected Top Ten Crybabies for the week of May 8-14, 2011. Due to my rigid (although self-imposed) one-week time frame, I will not include a pair of shriekingly infantile wails from the first week in May, but they’re so ridiculous, they bear noting anyway: Injuns whingin’ about the use of the codeword “Geronimo” for Osama bin Laden and sociologists smearing the good names of Peter Rabbit and Winnie the Pooh because they are, by dint of their maleness, inherently sexist.
Here are last week’s Touchy Ten. This is a countdown from 10 to 1, so the whining will grow louder with each entrant.
10. SMALL CHRISTIAN CROSS MISTAKEN FOR FAKE HUMAN PENIS
A Catholic taxicab driver in York (that’s in England if you aren’t) saw nothing overtly offensive in affixing a three-inch blue glass cross to his dashboard. But he didn’t reckon he’d have a fateful encounter with a fifteen-year-old schoolboy who insisted the cross was not a cross at all, but rather a “fake penis” placed there to cause the brat significant discomfort as he was being motored to school. The boy complained to the local council, who requested that the cab company remove the offending cruci-penis. A company spokeswoman said they complied with the request, adding that she was “personally deeply offended” at the council’s request and “very sympathetic for the driver.” (In these sorts of situations, people tend to get offended from every possible angle.)
9. DONKEY’S ESSENTIAL DIGNITY VIOLATED BY PAINTING IT PINK
I love animals, but I hate animal lovers. And I can’t muster much sympathy for donkeys, because they generally seem like assholes. To promote Cinco de Mayo, a restaurant called Century City Pink Taco painted a donkey pink and forced it to stand outside in what animal-rights activists describe as unconscionably sweltering heat ranging anywhere from 85 to 90 degrees. Although the donkey was tended to by animal trainers and provided with food and water, its commercial exploitation was described as “sadistic and perverse.” A spokeswoman for Companion Animal Protection Society claims that her organization reviewed a photo of the pink-painted beast and “determined that the donkey was in distress.” What goes unmentioned is the most truly offensive factoid in all this: There’s a restaurant that calls itself the “Pink Taco.” Last week, the Pink Taco’s owner finally capitulated and, as his penance, he’s selling “PETA-ritas” and will be donating the proceeds to the militant animal-rights organization. Still, nothing about the pink-donkey scandal is as scorn-worthy as last month’s declaration by “academics” that the very act of referring to animals as “pets” is insulting. Henceforth, the only inoffensive term will be “companion animals.”
8. OREOS ARE MEANT TO BE EATEN
In a petty Letter to the Editor responding to another petty Letter to the Editor at the Chico Enterprise-Record way out California way, a man objects to the publication of “vile slurs by progressives”—namely, the word “Oreo” used to describe black conservative writer Thomas Sowell. Complicating matters in his own unconsciously stereotyped way, he accuses the progressive letter-writer of trying to keep Sowell on a “plantation.” So here’s the problem: The game is not to outdo the progressives on the Sensitivity Meter. Let them call Thomas Sowell an “Oreo” and an “Uncle Tom.” Hell, let the bigots call him a “jigaboo” if it pleases them. The goal is not to heighten our sensitivities to the point where everyone’s insane; it’s to lessen them until everyone relaxes. Letting the slurs fly freely could have the gleefully cathartic effect of a communal food fight. Then again, things could get ugly really quickly. Let me sleep on that one.
7. THE AMERICAN FLAG IS UNAMERICAN
Eleven-year-old Frankie Girard drew an American flag but was forbidden to hang it up in his classroom in Orange, MA, because of its potential to offend his classmate, a Jehovah’s Witness. Frankie’s father contacted the ACLU, and soon everyone was getting offended about everyone else trampling on their imaginary right not to get offended. This case resembles similar stories where students were sent home for wearing American flag T-shirts and one pupil was asked to remove an American flag from his bicycle because such imagery was offensive to the Mexican immigrants who, you know, only wanted to come to this country to share in the American dream rather than act like arrogant, Anglo-hating conquistadors.
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