Monday, November 07, 2016

Please Remove This Post: It Bothers Me

It's been many months since I last published anything. But today I opened up Blogger yet one more time and saw ... "Please remove this post. This person committed suicide since you wrote it..." [not due to what I wrote] "...and it causes his family much pain" and "Take down this post please. Her family doesn't want to be reminded of her murder."

I've never received requests like this in all the years I've been writing. My only guess is that we are currently existing in a society where we are so busy mollycoddling everyone that we have completely lost our common sense. The fact that someone feels entitled to even ask to have a factual article removed simply baffles me. Are they also contacting all the major news outlets now, requesting that any news articles about their loved ones be removed from the files? Let's wipe out history and pretend it never happened.

Erasure of history is the constant frustration of Egyptian archaeologists. It was common that conquering or newly appointed royalty would order all mention of their former rivals wiped from record. So, presumably, upon the assumption of a new Pharaoh, craftsmen would be sent out to chisel out hieroglyphs and demolish statues until nothing remained. 

When a King or Queen is newly discovered, it's both a cause for great celebration mixed with awe, due to the complexity of the task. If this terrible practice hadn't existed, we would know so much more about that great society! Such was the case with the Pharaoh Akhenaten: He had been obliterated from most items but there was great excitement when they found the first tablets which even mentioned his name. The story of the discovery of Akhenaten is breathtaking to a history junkie. Why was the attempt made to obliterate him so thoroughly? Most experts believe it's because he was monotheistic: A big no-no in that part of the ancient world.

Modern historians and journalists used to scoff at these ancient Egyptian traditions as quaint but savage. Who would be so narrow-minded that they'd do such a thing? We were brought up hearing "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." [George Santayana]. We know better now, don't we?

So what has changed?

We have bred a nation of entitled whiners. We see constant reminders of it everywhere. Here's a recent meme that came out which sums it all up nicely:
How sad is that?

Of course this isn't limited to 18 year olds. Everyone is busy getting on the "you hurt my feelings" train and getting their tickets punched. And yes, I mean everyone. Every one of us, myself included. 

Are we entitled to complain if someone treats us unfairly? Of course we are. The difference is this: We are allowed to complain about what is unfair. We are not entitled to ask for someone to stop speaking the truth simply because it makes us uncomfortable.