Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Why's Everybody Always Picking On Me?

I read an excellent article in Salon by Glenn Greenwald, refuting the idea put forward by Ross Douthat that everyone but Muslims are fair game for having their taboos trampled in the media. I suspect that part of the issue is that people feel that no-one is afraid of offending them, and therefore they take offense (or, are perhaps simply jealous) of other groups that people do appear willing to tiptoe around. (On the flip side, you could also phrase it that people who feel that they have been insulted have their sense of fairness injured when others are not similarly put down.) Douthat’s lament is simply the latest in a litany of what are basically whines on the part of any number of different groups that they are the last “acceptable target” left for public insults. There have been Whites, gays, men, conservatives and Christians, among others, that have all made the point publicly that their group is the sole constituency left in the United States that people may badmouth without consequence. Of course, were any of these people listening to each other, rather than being on the lookout for anything that provides the slightest pretext for an outraged denunciation, they’d know that there were many other people in the boat along with them.

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