04/16/2024

What if our conversation offends?

Should we move if someone doesn’t like what we’re saying?

By RICH ROSTRON
The Response
03/30/23

We moved. We were standing near the counter as my friends waited for their drinks when we were asked to move by a lady at the table nearby. So, we moved. But should we have?

Our discussion had started with baseball and tomorrow’s (March 30th) Opening Day where the Cubs will play the Brewers in Wrigley Field and then meandered its way to the Nashville shooting.

My friends were in agreement when I said that the problem is not guns. “We’ve had guns in this country since before we were founded. The guns didn’t suddenly decide 30 years ago that they wanted to go into schools and kill children. Something else has happened and we’re refusing to look at that.” Instead, the Left wants to keep our focus on the guns to the distraction of anything else.

As our conversation went on to the idea that I’m hoping to purchase a Brown Bess (Revolutionary War musket), this 30ish woman interrupted and asked us to move.

“You’ve heard of Highland Park?” she asked. “Well, I was there.”

As I said, we did move. We moved because, as the three of us agreed from our new position about 15-feet away, we didn’t want to cause trouble for the business we all frequent. But, otherwise, my thought is that it wasn’t really for us to move.

I’m sorry if she has any trauma she’s dealing with because of what happened in Highland Park. And I certainly have no desire to increase her emotional struggles. But there was another solution to ‘the problem’ while this is a problem that is indicative of a much larger problem in America today.

The larger problem is that our culture now tells us that it is the responsibility of others to alter their behavior for my pursuit of happiness. Of course, if my behavior includes physically harming someone, my liberty makes no allowance for that. No doubt, however, this young lady would probably tell me that she found my speech ‘harmful.’

This is a big issue with Leftists today – harm includes any possible emotional distress. The Left has indicated that the ‘emotional harm’ experienced by a trans-girl in Nashville is to blame for the shooting that took six lives, including the lives of three 9-year olds. But, actually, that’s looking at the problem from the wrong perspective.

The unvarnished truth is that the ‘emotional harm’ the shooter may have felt was nurtured by the Left’s program of victimhood. This young girl was clearly told that she’s a victim. And if someone is a victim, they were obviously victimized by someone or something else.

Unresolved victimization leads to resentment and righteous indignation. It leads to a desire for revenge. In this case, it led to an act of deadly violence that is bereft of any shred of justification.

Instead of asking us to move, since she didn’t like what we were saying, if she couldn’t bring herself to ignore what we were saying, perhaps she should have moved. I don’t particularly care if someone says something I don’t like; I don’t have a right to tell them to stop talking or talk somewhere else, especially if I’m free to move.

Beyond that, when someone says something I don’t like, I’m more inclined to seek a civilized discussion in the hopes of dissuading them from the position I disagree with. Or perhaps I would learn more about the opposing view, and we would both achieve greater understanding. But she took those options off the table when she took offense, and told us to move.