Archive for the ‘The Offence Kleptomaniacs’ Category

Indignation Macht Frei

Virtuous indignation is very often confused with virtue. In politically correct hothouses, readiness to take Offence thus becomes shorthand for progressive zeal. Contrariwise, failure to take Offence suggests social deviance and complicity in oppression. No remark, therefore, can ever be innocent except provisionally, until the PC hawkeye has gotten round to linking it with some […]

An Impractical Suggestion

The logical culmination of offence kleptomania would be to hand out a pre-printed list of everything you are not allowed to say around ME. On the one hand, this would make for a very complicated situation, since everyone’s list would presumably be different. I do not want to hear the word X, you cannot tolerate […]

Is Sensitivity A Good Thing?

Awareness of the needs and interests of others is in all religions and ethical philosophies considered a virtue. We may extend that awareness into empathy with the situation of others. Not hurting or insulting others is obviously an ethical directive too. Now, awareness of and empathy with the needs of others gets itself also called […]

Vexatious Offendees

I once saw a verbatim quote from a fundamentalist preacher that equated the state of being vexed with the state of being oppressed. The latter term slides conveniently from the subjective sense, in which it is indeed a very approximate synonym to the former, to the objective sense that denotes unjust social, political or economic […]

Rent-Seeking

It is hard to say who expends the most energy on Offence: the kleptomaniacs who, whenever they see an offence that isn’t nailed down, proceed to take it; or those who expect to be warned in advance of everything that might possibly offend them, lest they encounter (the horror! the horror!) a new idea. For […]

The Defamation Horde

There was once an online history group that mentioned the common theory that Y. pestis, bubonic plague, was unleashed on the Western world (in which I include Dar al-Islam) by the Mongols. The story went that the southern Chinese knew very well that contact with the carrier of the bacillus, some sort of groundhog, was […]

Gift Tokens

In some societies, and in some subcultures of our own society, when men banter sexually at women, women banter right back at them. The advantages of this are twofold: fun, and being at ease with the opposite sex. In other societies and subcultures, however, sexual banter from men – sometimes even the mildest and most […]

A Global Community Of Tyrants

What does it mean when – as happens very frequently on the Internet – a person takes and condemns another person’s expression of individual taste as being an expression of ‘intolerance’? The first appears to be assuming that the second is expressing a preference only as a preliminary to suppressing whatever he does not care […]

The People’s Feelings May Not Be Hurt

Many dictatorships, especially those based on ethnicity, have restricted the press from writing anything that might ‘hurt the feelings of our people’. Since all of the people will have their feelings hurt some of the time, and some of the people will have their feelings hurt all of the time; since, even if they don’t, […]

Diplomatic Immunity

Taking Offence is, above all, a strategy for negating any objections to something you have done, are doing or would like to do. A barrage of complaints about the objector’s violation of some speech code can prevent any discussion of your own actions. A useful mnemonic is that Offence is a fence – a fence […]