This has been on my mind for a long time. I am writing as a form of expression. However, after writing, ‘Why I Avoid Voicing My Opinions Online’, I am still very wary to truly express myself. I’m concerned that if I voice something, I may have my facts wrong and be battled to a keyboard warrior death. This is something I’d like to avoid because it doesn’t help with my anxiety and it quite frankly results in a lot of my time being wasted. So, with that being said – please read this post without taking offense to something I say. I am a very open-minded, accepting human being. However, recently, I am struggling living in the ‘offended’ generation.
What do I mean?
Well, let’s take the most recent offense that’s hit the media by storm. TV show ‘Friends’ – the show that we all grew up loving, is now being slammed by millennials. It’s observed by the new generation that there are themes including homophobia, fat shaming, sexual harassment and more throughout one of the word’s most popular TV sitcoms.
Well, there’s no beating around the bush here – yes, times have changed and some things that were acceptable in the 90’s-early 00’s to say are no longer acceptable. But, if you type ‘Friends’ into Twitter you’ll see it’s a trending topic of offense. Offended teenagers and YA’s are expressing their outrage towards the show. They are appalled with the plotlines with the offensive themes and at the characters with such epic flaws. People are hating against homophobic Ross, they think that Joey is a creep, that Chandler is a victim and that Monica is constantly tormented for her previous body weight..not to mention Rachel should have got fired for sexual harassment. But at least we all still like Phoebe.
There are some very obvious flaws in the programme today. There is a lack of diversity and real issues are poked fun of. Like I mentioned above, I can totally see these problems. I can understand why people are shocked re-watching the series today. But, it’s not like we didn’t know all of this already? TV shows are not real. They are shows. We can choose whether or not we watch something and whether or not we like it. 13 Reasons Why is a marmite show. Some people got offended, upset and angry for its portrayal of very real themes and others thought it was a breakthrough. We are all humans and we will form our own opinions.
But – there comes a point where someone can get offended by a piece of toast on the internet.
‘Wow. You have wasted that piece of bread by over toasting it.’
Cute animal videos on Facebook are riddled with comments about animal abuse and neglect. A parent can’t post a selfie or video of their child without getting called out or threatened with a call from the NSPC.
To cut it short – we are living in the most offended generation.
Millennials are getting offended by everything and anything. Not everyone but the majority.
It’s because we are passionate. It’s because we were told to voice our opinions and it’s because there are more than just a few things wrong with the world right now. But, maybe we should filter what we are getting offended at? The process of being ‘offended’ isn’t really helping anyone. It causes rage, upset, confusion and well – offense. Maybe we should be channelling our ‘offense’ into something pro-active. I don’t want to see a tweet about something unless it’s important. If you are offended by something it means you’re passionate about the issue. Turn your offense into something useful. Maybe, if you’re offended by the way someone cooks their toast – zip it. Keep your shock to yourself. No one cares and you’ll upset the toast chef. But, if you are passionate about making a change or helping with a movement of change – sign up. You won’t be alone. But let’s consider the real world issues. Sure, TV these days could be considered a real world issue. So while you’re sat there, getting offended – write an open letter to the writers/broadcasters of the show. Express your disappointment via good old letter writing (or maybe pop out an e-mail).
Assess and address people!
It says a lot that I am marginally scared just writing this post. I am worried that someone will get offended by what I am saying. More often than not, when I edit my posts – I cut out a few things. I get worried someone will get offended if I express any form of opinion…hence, ‘Why I Avoid Voicing My Opinion Online’. But this post wasn’t a formulation of hard-core opinions. It was more of an observation piece. A little nudge in the direction of friendly suggestions…I am a little tired of seeing people tweet about their ‘offended’ state of being and I think my exhaustion with the whole thing led me here to ramble my thoughts. But, if you don’t like it, lump it. And stop watching Friends if you can’t handle it! Times have progressed. People are more aware of issues and movements. If Friends was going to be created today it would be totally different. Ross wouldn’t be homophobic, Monica wouldn’t have lost the weight and would be rocking her body, Rachel would get sacked, Joey would still be strange, Chandler would be gay and it would be OK and everyone would still love Phoebe.
Stop being a smelly cat.
(Disclaimer: I am not implying you smell, it’s a Friend’s reference – blame Phoebe..)