Whatever happened to the idea of common courtesy?
Once we were taught that if someone tells you they’re offended by something you did or said, you’d apologize, empathize, and then see if you could remedy the situation or misunderstanding. But, apparently, the new normal is to double-down on the offensive remarks or behavior, then mock and ridicule the party who complained. Seems the prevailing attitude is: “How dare you say I offended you. You’re the problem, not me. Not only do I not care if I offended you, I’m glad I did…because you deserve it.”
This very section features comments from a veritable parade of contributors who apparently intend to be as mean and ornery as possible to whoever they wish to insult. Unfortunately, in this age of social media, regardless of how off-the-wall the commentary, there’s always an audience. They can find like-minded people on any crackpot issue, truth be damned. Many Internet cohorts egg them on to push the discussion even further out of bounds.
Some use social media to commit really unsociable acts, whether it’s harping about people of other races, religions, political views, sexual persuasion, the poor and disadvantaged, women, or even supporting a local mascot. Those who act this way should be shamed, not applauded.
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The Internet and media reward the obnoxious by giving them the attention they want, and seldom deserve. There’s little wonder why we see so much attention directed toward dangerous and loud-mouthed xenophobes, like a certain presidential candidate.
Kevin J. Gagen