I recently attended a fundraiser in a neighborhood “on the way up”. It was themed as a pig roast and the proceeds benefited the local farmer’s market, the slow food movement and various farmers and vendors. Local chefs, artisans and community leaders volunteered their time, energy and products. And although the tickets were a bit steep, it was for a good cause and I was able to spend a beautiful day with my friends. During the day, I had posted a picture of one of the pigs on the roasting spit to credit my cooking brethren for hours in the sweltering sun working on our meal.
Just like this blog, my Facebook page consists of all things food. So, imagine my surprise when someone commented on my photo that they were upset by what they saw and provided a veiled suggestion that I remove the offending pic. I decided to sleep on it before I responded. I had to identify why I was disturbed by this turn of events. And I finally identified the source of my ire; censorship and attempted peer pressure. Oh yeah, and stupidity.
I didn’t post a picture of an animal being slaughtered or a person being beaten; I posted a picture of a fucking roasted pig at a pig feed no less. When did we come to believe that we should never have to hear, read or see something we don’t like...that we are above being offended?
Now I must add, that this is coming from people that I would consider rather liberal. Apparently, the belief system of free “speech” only applies if they aren’t the ones being offended. These are also the same people that post their political, religious and sexual beliefs regularly. And you can assume that not everyone will share his or her viewpoints. Does this mean that the rest of us shouldn’t be allowed to express our feelings, thoughts, beliefs, pursuits, etc.? Apparently so, unless they are inline with theirs…
I recently read something from Bill Maher that speaks to this exact issue:
“The answer to whenever another human being annoys you is not “make them go away forever.” We need to learn to coexist, and it’s actually pretty easy to do. For example, I find Rush Limbaugh obnoxious, but I’ve been able to coexist comfortably with him for 20 years by using this simple method: I never listen to his program. The only time I hear him is when I’m at a stoplight next to a pickup truck.
When the lady at Costco gives you a free sample of its new ham pudding and you don’t like it, you spit it into a napkin and keep shopping. You don’t declare a holy war on ham.
I don’t want to live in a country where no one ever says anything that offends anyone. That’s why we have Canada. That’s not us. If we sand down our rough edges and drain all the color, emotion and spontaneity out of our discourse, we’ll end up with political candidates who never say anything but the safest, blandest, emptiest, most unctuous focus-grouped platitudes and cant. In other words, we’ll get Mitt Romney.”
And that is why I want to have dirty hot random sex with Bill Maher. Oh, did that offend somebody?