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July 11, 2007


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khalid mir

Good post, Jodi.
I think you're quite right: there is a tendency to say: "I'm sorry that YOU feel offended" or "I'm sorry that you are hurt". Blair is master of apologising without apologising.

But I'd also look at it the other way. Why is everyone so offended (or so easily offended) nowadays)? One only has to disagree with someone's views to be subject to a diatribe or stream of abuse whereas in former times one would often hear: let's agree to disagree or , I hear where you're coming from, and so on.

I mean, if Rushdie is asked to speak why is that "politically divisive"? If he is given a knighthood why are people offended?

So, I wouldn't look at just how power displaces genuine reflection (and apolgies) but why there is a demand for them in the first place...how the system actually encourages people to whinge about *everything*, to inflate every small issue into something of monumental importance.

Example: the veil and Jack Straw (if you followed it). This is about freedom,"our way of life". No, muslims are deeply offended by his comments and demand an apology. And all the time the fundamental issue of the lack of economic, political and social justice for women is displaced.

To be offended by small matters is really an infantilizing of the public (in my opinion).

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