While I was offline for a month, I kept a note of any links and news stories worth commenting on. Now that I’m back, I’m aiming to post two short items a day here, about stuff that happened during my online absence, until I’ve cleared the backlog. This is one of those.
At the start of December, Christina Martin wrote a blog post in which she got uppity and moaned about some so-called offensive comedy on Channel 4, and decided to be all over-sensitive about Frankie Boyle and someone called Morgana. This whole big fuss kicked off, just because these comedians made a few jokes about how shit the mentally handicapped are, and invited millions of viewers to join them in laughing at disabled people’s comical inability to conform to more familiar patterns of behaviour.
Honestly, the political correctness these days is out of control. It’s getting so you can’t even pull someone out of their wheelchair and punch them in the face before stoning a few gay people to death and raping your wife any more without offending somebody. People are so touchy.
I forgot what my point was.
Oh, yes. The point of the above entirely unfair characterisation was that, whenever there are complaints of offense being caused in the name of humour, there’ll always be a crowd who refuse to accept any kind of compromise. They’re adamantly decided ahead of time that any decision not to make a particular joke at the expense of someone who can’t defend themselves is nothing more than pandering and over-sensitivity by woolly liberals, not to mention that utmost of horrors, censorship of their free speech.
The point was that some people fail to differentiate between “over-sensitivity” and, y’know, “sensitivity”.
And if someone from a minority demographic who have it pretty tough at the best of times (or someone not unreasonably speaking for them) says that these jokes are hurtful, and damaging, and perpetuate an unjust social disparity amounting to discrimination and bullying, then the least you can do is shut up and listen long enough to honestly consider whether they might be right.
I know a lot of people whine about being offended just because they’re thin-skinned and don’t know how to change the channel. But that’s not the only reason people complain that something’s offensive. Sometimes things really are unkind and unnecessary.