Some folks are going to find this post offensive.
I don’t frakking care.
In the days following the attacks on Paris, social media had two major reactions. The first (and fastest) was the predictable xenophobic rants against Islam, Muslims, and refugees. These are the now-standard spoutings of eentsy-minded fear-mongers who don’t like anyone unlike themselves and who use any excuse to close ranks and point their lily-white fingers at “the other.” These racist tirades were met with strong opposition from almost every quarter–in Paris itself, here in America, and online as well–and except for the rabid right-wingnuts, they have for the most part subsided from the social sphere.
The second, slower, and longer-lasting response was a series of “How dare you?” memes directed not at the perpetrators of these unconscionable attacks, but at people expressing their sorrow, sympathy, and solidarity with Paris. “How dare you?” these trolls demanded. “How dare you feel outrage over an attack on Paris when there have been attacks in Beirut and Baghdad, when Burundi officials have killed citizens, when over a hundred people were killed in Kenya?” These social memes are designed for one purpose: to shame us cheeky bastards who dare to express our sadness, grief, anger, or outrage regarding the events in Paris. These holier-than-thou bullies find my outrage offensive simply because I am not outraged enough. My outrage didn’t match their outrage, and I therefore deserved to be put in my place.
My response: Shut the frak up. (more…)