We love to be offended. Think about it for a second and let the concept sink in. Doesn’t quite make sense? It may be fair to say we are obsessed with it even. It seems that everyone loves to be the victim and target of some offense act, statement, or concept. Take a look at this simple example that happened over the last couple days.
Yesterday, Nike released a new limited line of shoes called “Black & Tan”, in tribute of the popular Irish beer concoction and upcoming St. Patrick’s Day. Although an unofficial name for the shoes, the term “Black & Tan” was originally given to a highly oppressive group of British leaders in the 1920’s, who terrorized Irish dissidents. Of course, the news quickly developed that Nike’s “name” has offended Irish groups throughout the world. News articles across the board couldn’t resist but use word “offended” multiple times throughout the dialogue, with majority of the “offended” being unnamed and unrecognized. This entire drummed-up story has forced Nike to make a public apology and remove the unofficial name.
There is nothing wrong with being offended; but consider that every time some group, including ourselves, is offended, the word’s meaning is diminished little by little. For example:
Barbara Walters is “offended” by the TV show, The Bachelor
Animal welfare group offended by Neb. Gov. Dave Heineman speech
Kim Kardashian is offended by actor John Hamm’s comments
Those are all from news headlines in the last several hours, according to Google.
In the current environment, when we are “offended”, it is just the status-quo anymore. It’s not an issue; it’s not a problem.
We’ll get over it, right?
Yet, that is the crux of the problem. These days, being offended is a trend and passing emotion. Everyone is looking for appeasement via apology or a handout, wondering what will be done to ease their ire. While we may be offended by someone cutting us off on the highway or bumping in to us on a crowded street, it really does not matter anymore. We aren’t truly offended; we’re just trying to fit in with the narrative of the day. It’s just cool to be the victim and oppressed. After all, who doesn’t naturally want to indulge in some self-pity and be a “martyr”?
I am truly offended.
I am offended…
- When it is announced that the Democratic Party of Lake County, Florida puts Barack Obama’s face on the American Flag.
- When a group of American Indians, Northern Arapaho, are given a permit to shoot American bald eagles.
- When I am told that I must pay for other citizens’ “contraception”.
- When it is announced that the national healthcare law will collect a $1 premium to fund abortion procedures from everyone enrolled.
- When my tax money is rolled into Solyndra and other “green energy” companies
- When our President shows his disdain for the United States of America, through almost all his enacted policies, including apologizing and negotiating with a declared “enemy” in Afghanistan.
These are issues to be offended over! Not shoe names, celebrity spats, and TV shows.
As citizens of this nation, we should be more concerned and offended by the path the U.S. has been set on by this Administration than Peyton Manning’s departure, a Kony 2012 documentary, or whether or not McDonald’s is out of chicken nuggets.
If we make these trivial parts of life the target of our outrage and choose to be repeatedly offended over them, then we simply become the “Little Boy Who Cried Wolf”.
After all, when everyone is offended, then no one really is.