Don’t You Dare Hurt My Feelings


CBS Mike and Molly

CBS - Mike & Molly

When I was a kid we used to say, “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.”  It was the elementary school version of a quote often attributed to Voltaire, “I disapprove of what you say, but will defend to the death your right to say it.”  It was also a good way to say, “your opinion doesn’t mean jack, so take a hike loser”.  Unfortunately that attitude has, for the most part, died out over the years.  The modern day American is an overly sensitive twit constantly on the hunt for a reason to be personally offended. Failing to find a reason, the new American seeks out excuses to be outraged on the behalf of others.  Case in point, the upset a harmless opinion blog by Maura Kelly on MarieClaire.com has caused.

In the blog, Ms. Kelly talks about the new CBS sitcom, Mike and Molly, about the love affair between two obese individuals.   At one point she says,

I think I’d be grossed out if I had to watch two characters with rolls and rolls of fat kissing each other … because I’d be grossed out if I had to watch them doing anything. To be brutally honest, even in real life, I find it aesthetically displeasing to watch a very, very fat person simply walk across a room — just like I’d find it distressing if I saw a very drunk person stumbling across a bar or a heroine addict slumping in a chair.

As a recovering lard ass I don’t see anything inflammatory about what she states in HER OPINION BLOG. It’s her opinion, she’s entitled to it and everyone else is entitled to reject it.  She doesn’t say fatties shouldn’t be on TV at all.  She doesn’t say we should all be sent to a fat farm until we lose weight so she doesn’t have to see us, no she simply says she thinks fat folks making out on TV is gross and doesn’t want to watch.  I’m kinda with her on that one, myself.  It’s why I sold my video camera on eBay actually.  Kelly also offers some basic info that we all know about the health effects of being obese and even some encouragement on losing the blubber.   But you wouldn’t know that by the over reaction of many of the 763,234,432 comments on Ms. Kelly’s blog much less the way the controversy was ginned up on the  Today Show.

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In the piece, Ruby Gettinger, obese reality TV whiner,

Be careful with your words. Words can kill a human being.

Seriously Ms. Gettinger?  Eating cases of cupcakes can kill a human being.  Telling them they’re fat because they keep eating cases of cupcakes cannot. In fact, you might be doing them a solid in the long run.

Later in the Today piece, Meridith Vieira is interviewing former plus-size model Emme and Rachel Sklar some sort of editor at some kind of website.   Emme’s response to the blog?

Where was the filter? Not just with the blogger, I understand her take is to be very raw. But where is the filter with the editor of Marie Claire?

Rachel Sklar goes on to say,

There was no research no facts. She made claims that she didn’t back up…

It’s an opinion-based blog ladies. O-P-I-N-I-O-N look it up Here let me help, from Dictionary.com,  “…a belief or judgment that rests on grounds insufficient to produce complete certainty.”

More of Ms. Sklar,

Her premise was that people don’t like looking at overweight people on TV…

No Ms. editor lady, the question her editor asked her was, “Do you really think people feel uncomfortable when they see overweight people making out on television?”  The rest of her blog was about her feelings on the subject.  In fact, to her credit, Kelly closes her blog with this sentence,

What do you guys think? Fat people making out on TV — are you cool with it? Do you think I’m being an insensitive jerk?

The assertions being made on the Today show and other outlets seem to be coming from people who didn’t even take the time to READ the woman’s blog (nor do they get the concept of a blog apparently).

In her apology, I have no evidence but I have a feeling it was coerced, Maura Kelly says,

People have accused me of being a bully in my post. I never intended to be that — it’s actually the very last thing I want to be, as a writer or a person. But I know that I came off that way, and I really cannot apologize enough to the people whom I upset.

Ms. Kelly, you weren’t the bully here.  To bully someone, you have to be more powerful than they are and be capable of intimidating them.  You simply stated your opinion in an appropriate place, your blog.  The bullies are the pseudo-celebrities on TV –  and commenters on your blog who aren’t content in just disagreeing with your point of view, but want to shut you up.  Here’s a tip America.  Get comfortable with others having opinions, sometimes about you, that you don’t like,  because if we ever decide there is a right not to be offended, then the right to free speech and expression  is dead.  Losing that is much more detrimental than your temporary hurt feelings.

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About Larry Downes

Son, brother, husband, father, boss, mentor & friend. Believer in unfettered personal liberty. Occasional host on 93.1 WIBC in Indianapolis.

2 Responses to “Don’t You Dare Hurt My Feelings”

  1. At the same time, aren’t these professionally offended twits entitled to their opinion even if their opinion is contrary to the rights of others? They are not taking any rights away from the politically incorrect offenders, even if their opinions indicate that they would if they could.

    • Yes they are. I haven’t advocated shutting them up or taking away the whiner’s right to whine, only pointing out that they are indeed hypersensitive whiners. Every time we decide to vilify someone for sharing their opinion or create a new “protected class” we don’t dare offend or define a “bad word” we don’t dare utter, we ALL lose our ability to freely express ourselves.

      When you decide that you’re going to “shout down and shut up” someone that disagrees with you, keep in mind you may be next because I don’t care who you are you have an opinion that someone isn’t going to like.

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