There’s more than one way to say, “You’re wrong and I’m right.”
I admit that part of the joy I get in reading the online articles of other writers who are much more popular and commercialized than I am is from skimming through the hundreds of opinionated comments that people leave at the bottom of the post: People on both sides of the issue trying to prove both the author and/or each other wrong. Here’s an example I effortlessly found this morning: http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com/Insurance/AssessYourNeeds/weston-7-insurance-myths-that-could-cost-you.aspx
And it often starts with one person who slightly takes the author’s words to an extreme context to where they can become offended. Therefore, they’re happy because now they get to leave a comment to tell off the writer, which indeed draws a flood of other commenters disagreeing with the first person. And so the snowball grows.
For many people, their desperation for a sense of power is so strong that they make themselves a sort of victim, offended by the slightest opinion of someone who does have some amount of control or influence over others- in this case, an online author. A website where this tends to happen regularly is The Grio. Here’s an example:
Of course the easily offended don’t just get their kicks from the Online World, they practice their form of self-psychosis in the real world too. Not too long ago I offended someone when I bought a snack for them (they gave me the money for it up front) and I didn’t bring it back to them in a separate container from the one I got for myself. It all worked out because they ended up giving me theirs without me paying them back- but still, the person made a scene over something very petty, in front of several other people. So I felt compelled to apologize- if for no other reason, because I felt awkward. (But if anyone should have been offended, I’d like to think it should have been me- for the sense of slight public humiliation I went through in the process.)
Events like that have taught me to apologize less. It’s not always my fault when a person is offended (though it often is). I’m learning to be better about sorting out the people who I indeed hurt through my lack of sensitivity and those who are simply chronic Glass Joe’s. So hear this, people who are offended way too easily:
Sorry, but I’m just not that sorry anymore.