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Are We All Just Too Easily Offended?

I don't know if it's just me, but every news story I read today is another tale of people getting bent out of shape. Have we built a culture of super sensitivity, or are there just so many things to object to nowadays? To the evidence!

  • Barack Obama's campaign has just persuaded a delegate to step down after she was ticketed for describing her neighbor's children's behavior using the word, "monkeys." The kids were playing in the tree next door to her house. According to police, the woman "came outside and told the children to quit playing in the tree like monkeys." The woman says she didn't want the children to get hurt, and she even calls her own grandchildren "monkeys." Why the ticket and her banishment as a delegate? The children were African American. Obama's campaign called her use of the word monkey "divisive and unacceptable."

There's more offensive evidence if you'll just


  • After Absolut Vodka's "In An Absolut World" ad showing Mexico taking over part of the US, people are now calling for a boycott of the liquor. According to the movement's website, they're fired up because "the ad's message to the Mexican audience is "In an Absolut (ie [sic] Perfect) world, 1/3 of the US is returned to Mexican control." Just wait until they get a look at Absolut's brand new ad targeting the gay and lesbian drinking population.
  • At a Texas middle school, a student fulfilling an assignment for history class, "to make a protest sign for or against an issue," chose illegal immigration. The sign she made following the assignment's directions read, "If you love our nation, stop illegal immigration." News of the sign got passed around lunch and angered a group of Latino students — who assaulted her. When she went for help, she was ordered back to class and told she could not call her parents. Her father is calling the incident, "a racially motivated crime."

Are we caught in an ever accelerating loop competing to see just who's more offended? Of who can "reject and denounce" the quickest and loudest? I know I've hit you with three stories that might strike you differently — I'd love to know if you think some are valid points of contention, and some are examples of how we're all just too darn touchy.

Let me know — I promise I won't be offended.

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