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Outrage Fatigue, Part Deux

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nigerian protest

I previously talked about being fatigued by so much of the mock outrage that gets bandied about.  Well now I want to say that we waste our outrage on trifles and can’t be bothered when it’s really needed.  There is a lot worth getting angry about these days and exhaustion is inevitable.

Almost 300 young girls were kidnapped by religious terrorists in Nigeria and there is almost no major outrage happening.  On top of that, 29 boys were killed by the same group soon after.  All of this just for daring to go to school.  The name of this horrible group, Boko Haram, actually means “western education is sinful” and they seem to think that particular sin must be punished with slavery and death.

When you can’t seem to muster up the proper response to something like this, just take a moment and imagine it happening in your own country.  The outrage would be right there on the surface.

If you need help determining which things deserve a very immediate, powerful response (one that hopefully would spur you into action), here is a handy chart.

Murder/Death/Kill — Get really fucking pissed off

Rape/Assault — Get really fucking pissed off (even more so when it involves children)

Corporate Malfeasance — Get really fucking pissed off

Old white racists being old white racists — Get annoyed that people still act like this

Miley Cyrus or some other young pop star behaves badly — Get annoyed that anyone ever acted like this

There is a chasm of difference between annoyance and outrage.  Be annoyed that people are stupid, racist, homophobic assholes.  If those same assholes do more than say stupid shit (like try to pass stupid laws or hurt the people they don’t like) then uplevel from annoyed to upset.  And then upset should lead you into action.  Outrage should have you marching in the streets.

It’s time we get our priorities straight.  What if one if those girls were your daughter, your sister, your friend?  How fucking pissed off would you be then?


One response »

  1. Great post. I would downgrade the ‘popstar behaving badly’ from ‘get annoyed. . . etc.’ to “blink slowly. twice. move on.” That is the energy I would expend. That way it would leave more for the marching and stuff.


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