I don’t remember now if it was you, Paul, with whom I was re-visiting the Dan Quayle — Murphy Brown fracas, but what comes to my pre-millennial’s mind whenever I see people foaming at the mouth over “hate” and “harassment”, I’m recalling how those entirely antique cliches have their origins in a spat over a sitcom and a ridiculous days’-long discourse between alleged adults over a hair on a Coke can.
Like “cool” or “chill out” or “progressive” or “social justice”, so many of these throwaway terms, or their deplorable antitheses of “hate” and “harassment”, are little more, honestly, than silly, juvenile fashion statements to use them at all. To say one is the subject of hate is to be “woke.” To claim one has been harassed, is to advertise one’s “social consciousness”. And anyone not in the loop or having outgrown such simplistic and effortless means of approaching conflict resolution, will take them on hearing them as seriously as they deserve to be taken, which is not at all.
And not a bit of this silly jargonia is new, groundbreaking, enlightened any more than it was when it was all coined, or particularly meaningful.
Which is the saddest part of fashionable wokeness; how it serves primarily to wax the ears of those hearing it and blunt the validity of those deploying it, who might in some exceptional instance actually have a legitimate grievance.
No point in agonizing about “desensitized” or “indifferent” people, policies or institutions. These are the direct outcome, of generations of whining for whining’s fashionable sake, which few in the grownup world of reality have a lot of time or empathy for any more.