I joined Facebook way back in 2009, when I was about 12 with just one purpose in mind – to create the sickest, baddest looking farms of all time in FarmVille. The games used to be the most interesting aspect of Facebook ; the constant status updates of what I was doing or where I was having soup held no interest for me.
It still doesn’t, but my farmer/chef/castle defending days are behind me now. The new interest is the comment section.
Every time I look at a photo or a meme, I automatically start anticipating some glorious drama in the comment sections and the virtual world never disappoints. You can put a status about how much you loved potatoes and still offend a bunch of people. They are out there!
There was this recent incident with the X-Men Apocalypse billboard, where a super-villain strangling a superhero superheroine (God forbid!) was enough to spark feminist outcries. Or maybe it was just that one celebrity who got offended and the media blew it up, that happens. The apology Fox issued though almost felt like a 9 year old nice kid apologising to the bully in front of the principal simply because his mom wanted him to. It would’ve been okay (not really, but okay) if the outrage was over a violent image, but it just had to be violence against a woman. Mystique is a shape shifting mutant!
The borders between freedom of expression & intentional offense seems to be really blurred these days. It’s not just feminism that’s misunderstood (or rather, being taken too seriously) these days, the same goes for more or less any kind of discrimination out there. Human beings, as a species are becoming very intolerant (read : sissies). People tend to go out of their way, to both, take offense as well as not to offend anyone, making a big deal out of situations that didn’t exist in the first place.
I randomly came across this scene in a sitcom Community yesterday where these two guys are attempting to create a college mascot or whatever, and they attempt to make sure it offends absolutely nobody. So they come up with all these charts on eye shapes, skin colors and basically everything that has offended anyone in the history of mankind. It all culminates in the end to this “stickman-whatsapp ghost emoji hybrid” and this other guy looks at it and sums up the situation – and the current scenario outside – aptly saying, ‘Well, not being racist is the new racism!’