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Question: Is Being Offended A Personal Choice?

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posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:33 AM
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originally posted by: CharlieSpeirs
& anyone who claims they can control their emotions at all times must be Buddha reaching Nirvana.


More probably a sociopath.

Or lying.




posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:33 AM
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Depends entirely on the individual, and their programming. For some people being offended is not a personal choice, it is a mandatory collective (group) response.

The only choice is for people who have been personally offended. In that case, you can choose to be, or not.

When your collective group, culture, religion, etc has been offended whether you are or not, is not a matter of choice.

How people react to being offended is also similarly dynamic.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:34 AM
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originally posted by: ScientificRailgun
We all live in our own brains. Words carry meaning, but not emotion. The emotion is a result of your own brain chemistry. No word, or combination of words can forcibly illicit an emotional response in a person. It's all subjective. That said, there are societal pressures that constantly remind people they SHOULD be offended if someone makes a rape joke, or jew joke, or any other number of crude things. But the joke itself carries no emotion. You determine the feeling you get from someone's word, either consciously or subconsciously.


Interesting. I agree.

Now dig deeper. What are "societal pressures?" Are they beliefs you have about how other people will judge you, or how you'll be valued, based on how you think you're *expected* to respond?



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:35 AM
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originally posted by: ausername
Depends entirely on the individual, and their programming. For some people being offended is not a personal choice, it is a mandatory collective (group) response.

The only choice is for people who have been personally offended. In that case, you can choose to be, or not.

When your collective group, culture, religion, etc has been offended whether you are or not, is not a matter of choice.

How people react to being offended is also similarly dynamic.


How does the group determine whether they're supposed to be offended or not? Isn't that a collective group choice based on what the group chooses to believe?



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:35 AM
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a reply to: Jamie1because another persons opinion of me and my beliefs is not really that important to me?I would consider myself a secure individual not a trait I see in those who are easily offended. I come to ats, because of the terms and conditions that some would describe as too PC I just see them as enforcing a code of politeness, which creates a better atmosphere to spend my time in online


edit on 8-1-2015 by woodwardjnr because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:36 AM
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originally posted by: ScepticScot
a reply to: Jamie1
People have every right to be offended by cartoons, emails or comments by politicians. They can also want people to change their behaviour as much as they want.
However that does not mean anyone else has agree with them or even be concerned that they are offended.



This isn't about rights. The question is do you think being offended is a choice?



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:37 AM
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Information for the thread that is at the heart of this matter.

Changing societal mores.

en.wikipedia.org...



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:37 AM
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originally posted by: xavi1000
Members of the NYPD did not kill anyone.
Students at Smith College did not kill anyone.
Islamic radicals______________________.


Those are actions and responses. This is not about a value judgment on people's choices. It's about whether people choose to be offended.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:37 AM
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You can only take offence, you can't give offence.

As far as I'm concerned, anyone taking offence needs to grow up. For as long as people are getting offended, nothing is moving forward



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:38 AM
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People use excuses like "offensive", fearful and angry to hide behind in order to keep their version of reality from collapsing.

They can't just let it go, they have to pretend some "offense" is an actual attack on their person instead of just someone else's opinion.

(Oh the Humanity) goes a lot further than having an actual argument.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:38 AM
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originally posted by: Jamie1

originally posted by: ScientificRailgun
We all live in our own brains. Words carry meaning, but not emotion. The emotion is a result of your own brain chemistry. No word, or combination of words can forcibly illicit an emotional response in a person. It's all subjective. That said, there are societal pressures that constantly remind people they SHOULD be offended if someone makes a rape joke, or jew joke, or any other number of crude things. But the joke itself carries no emotion. You determine the feeling you get from someone's word, either consciously or subconsciously.


Interesting. I agree.

Now dig deeper. What are "societal pressures?" Are they beliefs you have about how other people will judge you, or how you'll be valued, based on how you think you're *expected* to respond?
It's partly that, I believe. There's a deeper level still, however, and that is the intent of the speaker. I'm a firm believer that empathy is a real thing. It's a combination of our subconscious ability to determine the emotional state of another person based on their facial expressions, body language, speech patterns, and so forth. Therefore, it's possible to SURMISE, but not know exactly, what emotion a speaker INTENDS to illicit in you which their words. I can speak to you, for instance, in way that would tell you that I 95% intend to offend you. Some people react to that by actually becoming offended, but it is their own internal process that caused the offense. It's a quick succession of "The person wants to offend me, I don't like that. I'll be offended." thoughts, whether conscious or not.

In short, a speaker can convey what emotion they WANT to you respond with, but your response itself is still subjective experience.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:40 AM
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originally posted by: TheArrow
Being offended is not a choice, it is a passive response to stimuli.

Taking offense is a choice, it is an active response to stimuli.


Great distinction. So how are the passive responses formed? Based on conditioned beliefs? Can a person be passively offended if they don't already have existing beliefs and rules that are triggered?

I.e., how does somebody know when to be offended?



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:40 AM
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As a retired Prof of PSY

I can tell you definitively that some of the posters are correct

no one can push your button but you

no one can "make you offended" but you

if one lacks self control, one is easily offended

if one lacks a strong belief/conviction in one's religion, ideas, convictions, etc., one is easily offended

if one knows what they believe and believe it fully, one can not be easily "offended"

In all of the instances of ugly slurs, etc.
a person who has self control and is firm in what they believe
may take issue with what is said
may argue rationally about what is said
may say what is said is not true
however, offense is an emotion
and those who can not control their emotions
and are weak in their convictions
are easily offended


Those who have control over their emotions
and are firm in their convictions
may disagree
but will not be "offended"

Being easily offended, is the sign of a weak personality
an underlying and unconscious questioning of ones beliefs
and a need to control others and
make others believe as you do, to bolster your own weak convictions
and validate your own beliefs


One can challenge "ugly" slurs
and show how and why the ideas presented by the slur
are incorrect and the belief flawed
without taking "offense"
It is people who do this that totally infuriate the easily offended
because they need others to be offended
to validate their own weak beliefs.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:41 AM
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originally posted by: Jamie1

originally posted by: ausername
Depends entirely on the individual, and their programming. For some people being offended is not a personal choice, it is a mandatory collective (group) response.

The only choice is for people who have been personally offended. In that case, you can choose to be, or not.

When your collective group, culture, religion, etc has been offended whether you are or not, is not a matter of choice.

How people react to being offended is also similarly dynamic.


How does the group determine whether they're supposed to be offended or not? Isn't that a collective group choice based on what the group chooses to believe?


It's not rocket science... For example, if you are gay, and I go into a long rant about how repulsive homosexuals are, how they are condemned to hell...etc etc, at some point, you will be offended... It is similar for any large social groups of people.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:43 AM
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a reply to: Jamie1




Do you believe being offended is a personal choice based on what you choose to believe?


I agree with the posters who have said that our reactions are passive stimuli that we have little or control over.

I also believe that we have no control over what we truly believe. People may be indoctrinated and think they believe something that they've never really thought about or questioned. But when we truly expose our indoctrinated beliefs to the light of reason, we can only align our minds to beliefs that makes sense to our own personal intellect.

I can't make myself believe in Santa Clause, even though I once did, after my sense of reason kicked in. If it became necessary to my survival, I could pretend to believe in Santa, and practice all the necessary trapping to make everyone think I'm sincere.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:43 AM
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Some things are universally offensive.
The rest is just politlcally correct whiners, getting butthurt over something. Grow a thicker skin or stay home.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:46 AM
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Also one must only look at the definition of offensive...

It means causing someone to feel resentful, upset, or annoyed.

Causing!!!


In the sense that it's not a choice.




The pseudo-psychologists have come along to tell us we can choose how the chemicals in our brain react to stimuli...

How surprising.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:47 AM
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a reply to: Jamie1



So here's the question:

Do you believe being offended is a personal choice based on what you choose to believe?

And if so, what justification is there for wanting people change their behaviors so that you don't upset yourself with your own beliefs?


Every action you make and emotion you feel should be a singular conscious choice. I say should, because that is the ideal state of a self-actualized human. The closest examples you will find is monks and young children. In practice, humans are externally programmed and in some cases self programmed by memes.

Memes are programs in your brain that abstract above free will. Memes have degrees of strength measured in units 1/free will. Some memes are totalitarian, like Islam and a handful of other religions. They invade every corner of your brain to extinguish free will and terminate any other memes that may be resident.

The call to action that Islamists feel is real but for the most part it is not the result of free will. It is the will of the program. This collective will is their "God". This is why, as a humanist, I do and will oppose Islam in all it's manifestations, everything short of killing the host. As for the other religions, I believe they are all dying of natural causes except possibly for Zionism.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:48 AM
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I think we should petition for the word "Offended" to be replaced with "butthurt"

The problem is people who feel offended by something feel that somebody ought to do something about it...but most of the time it someone else who should be doing something.



posted on Jan, 8 2015 @ 11:48 AM
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a reply to: whyamIhere

"Selective Outrage" - is a good name for it.

Once someone starts being offended surely this heightened state of sensitivity would be triggered repeatedly - if applied consistently. But it isn't - its application is selective.

The spectrum of offence is so vast and subjective - that the word is rendered almost meaningless.

But .... no sooner have I typed that and I am asking myself - What about things that are labelled 'grossly offensive'?

Would I be right in assuming that something labelled grossly offensive - would be offensive to a significant number of people - something like 90%+ of people.
edit on 142073933501bThu, 08 Jan 2015 11:48:55 -0600amth0000000100000055 by UmbraSumus because: (no reason given)



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