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22 March 2018

Are we just too easily offended?



There's a weird 'fear' behind every tweet or instagram caption I upload lately.
A fear that someone, somewhere, may find whatever I'm saying 'offensive' and unleash a shitstorm of angry, rude tweets my way, even though my tweet could literally be something as silly as not liking pineapple on my pizza (although, I suppose people can get really passionate about food).

So, upon writing out my 10th tweet of the day, I weirdly find myself, yet again, pausing before I hit that 'tweet' button. 
Often, this is because I always worry about someone picking at what I've said, finding offence where there is none to be found. 
But why?

Everyone is more than entitled to their own opinion, but where is the line? When does it stop being someone's harmless opinion, and become someone's hateful comment?


My tweets, photos, instagram captions etc. have never ever warranted the level of hate I see 90% of the time on Twitter, and yet there is still that little voice inside my head that's casting doubt over everything I post.
But, where has that doubt came from?

Is it possible that people are just simply way too easily offended? And that's the reason behind the ever increasing social media arguments? Or, is it simply that over time, and generations, we have learned to not sit back and let people spout their awful, hate filled opinions? Are we just, simply, taking a 'stand'?

 

Twitter is rife with arguments, witch hunts, and 'exposing', so is it really that surprising that people are too afraid to air their own opinion? Is the 'blogosphere' part of the blame for this?


The answer, is my opinion, is both.
There if proof online, that people are just simply far too easily offended. They take your simple, harmless tweet, and turn it into an issue that it never was to begin with.

However, there are awfully rude people out there, who's 'opinions'/tweets deserve to be challenged. But, does that mean they deserve hate? A witch hunt? Well, that's a whole other post in itself.

We, as a generation, have realised that it's okay, and more than justified, to not just sit back and take 'shit', to speak up when something is wrong. But then, to spout hate back? Do two wrongs make a right here?


For myself, I know that the reason behind why I don't tweet anything 'too' opinionated, is because I've seen how easily offended people get, and honestly, it's not worth the hassle.
But is that fair? That we should be censoring ourselves for the 'easily offended/too sensitive' people on social media platforms like Twitter?


So, are we too easily offended? Too sensitive? Or should we expect everything we put online to be challenged, because, well, it's public, and out there for the world to comment on?

Instead of simply unfollowing someone you no longer agree with, or someone that has tweeted or posted something that you took offence by, it's now commonplace for people to call them out, slam them in public, rather than simply just unfollowing or blocking.


I had a perfect example the other week myself.
I posted a harmless photo of my 5 year old sister, and commented that she's beautiful, and within the hour, I had someone in my mentions assuming that that's all I was focusing on and wrong for doing so, that I should 'strive for more, compliment her brains, her goals etc'. It was rude, and all from a harmless photo of my sister.

Yes, sometimes this is completely understandable, you should call people out if they are being racist, sexist, etc. BUT is it needed if they simply have an opinion that differs from your own? Something so small and not really that important?

It's a difficult one. And to be honest, I can guarantee someone would probably even get offended by this post itself. But do we have a right to be? Free speech and all that?

Have you ever found yourself doing this? Or do you simply not worry?
Any advice for those of us that are struggling with this? What are your thoughts?