Living to Be Outraged Is No Way to Live

The spear makes it less offensive, right?
• October 22, 2013 11:13 am


Matt Labash nominally addressed the Redskins Name Controversy (TM) today in his weekly monthly extremely irregularly published advice column for the Daily Caller. I say "nominally" because the point of his column is less about the Redskins Name Controversy (TM) and more about the culture of outrage in which we live. As Matt puts it,

what outrages me about all the outrage (if I can’t beat them…..) is the comment of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, who said, "If one person is offended, we have to listen." Really? Do we? Because if so, we’re going to be here a while. The last time I checked the internet, somebody was offended about everything. In fact, it’s doubtful the internet would continue to exist if someone wasn’t eternally taking offense.

This is, of course, exactly right. And as if to prove Matt's point, several no-fun-niks immediately took to Twitter to express their OUTRAGE that humorous writer Matt Labash would, *gasp* crack jokes about the Redskins Name Controversy (TM). For instance:

The last one is my favorite since it's a.) inaccurate (that's the second sentence of the second page), b.) explicitly ignores the fact that, this being a humor column, Labash is writing, or at least trying to write, humorously, and c.) that sentence almost immediately precedes this one: "But of course, these days, all statements must be political ones, and all outrages, manufactured or otherwise, are of utmost urgency, requiring our immediate attention."

I have no particularly strong feelings on the Redskins Name Controversy (TM). I think Charles Krauthammer is mostly right; uses change and politeness, not political correctness, suggests we should change with them. But I also think Allahpundit, who echoes Matt, is mostly right:

And so now, with record speed, here’s [Lawrence O'Donnell] in the highest self-righteous dudgeon towards people who hold a position that virtually no one gave a wet fart about six months ago. To me, that’s the worst part of the whole anti-Redskins phenomenon. It’s not opposing the term itself that’s annoying; that’s defensible. It’s not even getting indignant with people who don’t see a problem with using it. It’s the sanctimony coupled with the faddishness of the whole thing. How dare Dan Snyder disagree with something that the left didn’t care about five minutes ago? How dare he? Somewhere the owner of the Cleveland Indians is watching all this and wondering when it’ll be his turn, and who’ll decide when it is.

As I joked on Twitter, all the liberals in good standing who are also Redskins fans who have jumped with both feet onto the "R-Word" bandwagon amuse me to no end. You know why you weren't offended by this last year, or the year before, or in the 1990s, or in the 1980s? Because the word isn't offensive to anyone other than a handful of professionally outraged busybodies who have spent these last few years trying to convince everyone else that they should also be outraged. It's absurd.

But whatever. As my (soon to be former) colleague Katherine Miller has joked, Snyder should just go full troll and rename the team "The Bullets."