I’ve been managing my new “official” Facebook page for a month or so now, and it finally happened: yesterday I posted something that offended someone.
I’m not going to re-post that image here. I didn’t take it down, so it’s still readily available on my page – to put it succinctly it’s a simple image featuring LeVar Burton of Star Trek and Reading Rainbow fame, accompanied by some very strong words of praise and which incorporates vulgarity to comedic effect. In other words, it’s in the same vein as this image:
There’s a whole bunch of these images floating around the internet – some of which use even more vulgar language than this – so I won’t post them here. Just Google “hot holy dicks from hell” and you’ll get a good idea.
I find stuff like this just god damned hilarious, and the majority of people who came across it yesterday agreed with me. However, there were three people who apparently found it offensive and went so far as to use Facebook’s automated system to ask me to take it down. Now, I’m not one to criticize someone else’s value system, and neither am I someone who’s insensitive when it comes to what others find offensive – everyone’s different, and nobody has the same kind of parents that raised them on a steady diet of George Carlin and Howard Stern that I had (hi Mom!). At the same time, I don’t understand how people can get so worked up over a crude, stupid joke image that they saw on Facebook to the point where they want the image taken down because it offends them.
I’m sorry, but I’m not going to censor myself because you might get offended. If you don’t like what you see when it comes to my blog posts or the stupid image macros I post on my Facebook page, by all means please stop following me – I bear you no ill will whatsoever – but just because something I do or say may have hurt your feelings doesn’t give you the right to demand I delete images or take down blog posts. I’ve got a right to say whatever I feel like in whatever manner I desire, and as long as I’m not violating any laws in doing so there’s really nothing you can do if you don’t like it besides looking away.
This whole societal trend towards ‘your rights end where my feelings begin’ has gotten seriously out of hand. While a more accurate phrase would be ‘your rights end where my rights begin,’ the former phrase operates on the misconception that people have some sort of right to not be offended or not have their feelings hurt, which is a notion that is completely and utterly wrongheaded. I’m not talking about instances of bullying or harassment, by the way, as being targeted by that kind of behavior is an obvious infringement of your right to privacy; bullying and harassment is different in that it is being directed at a person with the express purpose to intentionally inflict physical or emotional injury, whereas posting stupid pictures on the internet for the purpose of making you laugh is a completely different animal.
Folks, if you don’t like the stupid content I produce, don’t subscribe to my blog or my Facebook page. And if you’ve got small kids that you don’t want exposed to vulgar or offensive language, what the fuck are you doing letting them use Facebook unsupervised, you dumb bastards?