Tag Archives: Life

What is truly ‘Offensive’…

So little time, and so many examples…

Yesterday we looked at “Sneaker-Gate”, where two different gym shoe companies knuckled under to cries of ‘That’s Offensive!’ and scuttled the production of the proposed shoes. After I wrote it and had some time to think further, I was reminded of a cartoon that I saw many years ago, which summarized almost perfectly this entire problem:

This is so accurate. Not that long ago, there was a general agreement on what was considered offensive, and there was an implied threshold for what would qualify. It has now become trivialized, diluted of its original definition and come to mean merely “stuff or people I don’t like“.

To paraphrase one of the memorable lines from The Incredibles: “When everything is offensive, NOTHING is”.

Meaning, there are still plenty of occurrences in the world that can and should be termed “offensive”. For instance, no right thinking person would hesitate to describe the Holocaust as offensive, and rightly so. But when we assign the visage of Hitler to every politician with whom we disagree, it cheapens the horrors of the Holocaust.

It’s no wonder that so many of the youth today don’t even know who Hitler was or the genocide he orchestrated.

And genocide is the ultimate offense. Whether it is genocide in Rwanda, Turkey, the Ukraine, Bosnia, or Cambodia, it all amounts to the same thing: the slaughter of the innocent.

We are experiencing another genocide, this one on our own shores. It is happening in plain sight, with its opponents labeled extremists or fascists, which is rather ironic when you think about it. And so I will take this opportunity to, again, ask you to view the following movie which logs in at just over 30 minutes.

Because if this doesn’t qualify as offensive, then the term truly has no meaning.

(**Click on the image below**)

Stupid looking? YES. Racist? NO.

Courtesy of the National Post blog:

Adidas has dropped its plans for a sneaker with a shackle-like ankle cuff after critics complained the shoes were racist and reminiscent of slavery.

The JS Roundhouse Mid, a high-topped sneaker that featured an orange plastic cuff, was a collaboration with American fashion designer Jeremy Scott. Scott has built a reputation on eccentric designs for celebrities such as Britney Spears, Kanye West, Rihanna and Bjork.

While Adidas did scrap the shoe, they initially defended it, saying it “is nothing more than the designer Jeremy Scott’s outrageous and unique take on fashion and has nothing to do with slavery.”

They promoted the shoe with the line: “Got a sneaker game so hot you lock your kicks to your ankles?

It was to go on sale in August for US$350.

OK, I may not be the best guy to determine fashion when it comes to sneakers, and the first reason is: I still call them ‘sneakers’. But I can tell you that calling footwear which costs $350/pair “racist and reminiscent of slavery” is so stupid I am stuttering as I type.

The cuff is plastic, people. And orange. Orange! It’s reminiscent of “props my 4-year old uses when playing cops and robbers”, ….not slavery. The shirt I’m wearing is made from cotton: is THAT “reminiscent of slavery“, too?

Lord Above, please deliver me from the professionally aggrieved.

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Amazingly, this isn’t the only “sneaker outrage” of the year: everyone wants in on the act.

From msnbc.msn.com about a month ago:

Chances are you won’t be wearing your “Black and Tan” Nike sneakers when you toast to St. Patrick’s Day this weekend.

Why? Because Nike has decided to change the unofficial name of its new shoe after an Irish kerfuffle erupted over the sneaker’s handle.

If the marketing folks at Nike had done a quick Google search on the term they would have found that Black and Tan does not just refer to a drink that combines a pale ale beer and a dark beer. It also applies to the Black and Tans, who were a British paramilitary force that smothered an Irish uprising in the 1920s.

“It would be the American equivalent of calling a sneaker ‘the al-Qaeda,’” stated a story about the shoe controversy in the IrishCentral.com, one of the largest Irish-American news sites.

Gee, am I glad that the Irish are finally catching up in the “who-can-be-offended-more” sweepstakes. They were really getting left behind up ’til now.

So, it’s acceptable that a beer is named after this open wound on Irish hearts, but not a gym shoe? Does that not seem to lend itself to more than a couple fairly easy Irish jokes?

Maybe it’s just me.

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So, we have sneakers that ‘remind’ people of an uprising which I’ll wager 95% of the country has never heard of, and we have other sneakers whose orange plastic cuff has them reliving an experience …which they never experienced. What is wrong with us? Author/pundit Mark Steyn is fond of saying that our society today doesn’t need ‘sensitivity’ training but insensitivity training — that’s to say, thicker skins.

While I agree with his sentiment, my own pet theory as to why this is happening seemingly more than ever (and I may be totally wrong, but hear me out) is the increased number of one-child homes in society today.  Think about it: when you have a sibling, not to mention 2 or 3, no one (and I mean NO one) gets under your skin better or more often. And after 18 years of being deliberately and repeatedly offended, this other stuff doesn’t even rise to a level worth noticing.

Nothing inoculates someone against being thin-skinned like having brothers or sisters.

Regardless of the reason, we need to get over ourselves if we’re to survive, as a country and as a society. It’s no wonder we can’t deal with the world’s issues properly, if “Sneaker-Gate” is what occupies our attention.

By using up all of our emotional energies on these pseudo-virtual, let’s-pretend outrages, we simply don’t have any actual outrage left.

Carol Burnett Show

Mr. G is right: these ARE excellent…and I’m old enough to remember seeing them the first time around.

That Mr. G Guy's Blog

After reading JTR’s post on Louie Anderson, I commented on how some of the funniest comedy I’d ever seen was on the Carol Burnette Show. Here’s one of the all time great skits;

Or this classic;

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Out-and-out lawlessness

We touched on this last week, but Marco Rubio has been working on this problem for months now. If you didn’t hear his quote from last night, here it is:

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OK, no surprise to us. We know that Obama divides on purpose, and that he actively seeks to pit one group against another. But I think Marco misses something here.

Look at what he says again:

“He deliberately divides Americans against each other for purposes of political gain,” Rubio said.

“If you look at this White House, they never pass up an opportunity to pit one group of Americans against another for purposes of improving his electoral chances. Time and again, whether it’s one group of Hispanics against another, men against women, rich against poor, he is constantly looking for opportunities to tell one group of Americans that they would be better off if another group of Americans were worse off, and I think while that’s common in politics, it’s not just Obama, it’s common in politics, but I think what’s really sad is he had a chance to be different.”

Rubio may be correct that “pit(ting) one group of Americans against another” is common in politics, but common with whom? Progressives/Liberals, of course. That’s their brand of politics, and it’s one that Obama uses with their implicit blessing:

  • What else would you call the (alleged) 1% against the (even more alleged) 99%?
  • What about the Catholic Church and her followers vs. the “I want free condoms and abortifacients” crowd?
  • Of course, we recently had the “Obama & gay marriage” thing, as well as
  • Voter ID laws that Obama’s Department of Justice is fighting tooth-and-nail.
  • And the ongoing battle over energy in the country.

Do all of THOSE topics divide people? Absolutely. I’d put Obama’s Gestapo-ish EPA among the absolute worst offenders, choosing enviro-weenies over the country time-and-again.

And now you have this utter disregard of the law which is breath-taking.

Charles Krauthammer actually summed it up pretty well over the weekend:

“Beyond the pandering, beyond the politics, beyond the process is simple constitutional decency. This is out-and-out lawlessness. You had a clip of the president himself say months ago ‘I cannot do this on my own because there are laws on the books.’ Well, I have news for the president: The laws remain on the books, they haven’t changed”.

So Rubio had it right, as far as he went. But Obama is intent on going much further than that, and I wouldn’t put anything past him now.

Happy Father’s Day

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Stop the Spending

It’s easy-to-understand graphics like this that need to be repeated, and repeated again.

Can this change YOUR mind on abortion?

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We posted this earlier, but if you haven’t seen it, you owe it to yourself to watch it now.

It really is that important.

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Watch “180” ….HERE!

One of these things, ..is NOT like the OTHER…

Do you remember the Sesame Street game & song: “One of these things is not like the other“? You do?

Sing it with me! “One of these things, …does NOT belong……..”

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