by Bob Branco
I keep telling myself that I will not listen to talk radio as much as I used to, but when local talk host Barry Richard is on the air, I am tempted because I like his approach. While I was listening to him recently, he mentioned three more incidents which prove once again how people want the whole world to be offended about things that never bothered us. What really gets me is that two of the three incidents were started by what our society will expect to be very intelligent people—a college professor and a school principal.
First, a Minnesota college professor recently lectured his students with his belief that the Virgin Mary was raped by a powerful Deity because she did not consent to pregnancy. Keep in mind that this is not your typical atheist or radical left winger. This is a college professor who feels he can use his authority to send his message to young, impressionable adults of the society.
Second, a school principal in Nebraska decided to forbid the distribution of candy canes in the classroom because they are shaped like the letter J for Jesus, and that the red and white colors on these candy canes symbolize Jesus’ blood during the crucifixion. In this case, the principal was dismissed. Good enough!
Finally, a man went to a mall where Santa Claus was visiting little children. He stood there for several hours yelling at the kids: “Your parents lied to you, there is no Santa. There is no Santa.” Many of the children started crying as a result of this man’s rant. Now you would think that he would be apprehended by the police for disorderly conduct. Think again. The man was allowed to yell at the kids in the mall because the authorities felt he had the right to do so. After all, he had to exercise freedom of speech.
Is this what society has come to? If you or I went to a mall and proceeded to carry on like that, we’d likely be taken away. Or would we? Must we be allowed to exercise our rights even if we hurt other people? Is this the new law that dominates our world today?
Again, I must ask, why can’t people simply have their own opinions without shoving them down our collective throats? If you believe that the Virgin Mary was raped, do you need to brainwash college students about it? If you think that candy canes symbolize Jesus because they are shaped like a J, what’s wrong with that? As for Santa Claus, why can’t we just let the kids think the way they want? I believed in Santa Claus until I was old enough to figure out otherwise. Why does a guy have to crash a mall and upset children?
Instead of encouraging everyone to be offended, let’s encourage everyone to love, honor, and respect one another.
About the Author
Robert T. Branco resides in New Bedford, Massachusetts, and is the author of five self-published books. He is a community organizer, tutors persons with visual impairments, has written columns for local and international organizations, and publishes a monthly online newsletter, The Consumer Vision. Bob’s website, with full information about his books, is http://www.dldbooks.com/robertbranco/.