The “Too Easily Offended” Culture

I sometimes get frustrated with how easily people get offended today – particularly when it comes to religious topics.  I’ve been in a couple of situations lately when the issue of Christianity came up and one person in the group nearly became apoplectic.  They became so offended we had to change the subject.  The thought occurred to me that over my career, I’ve filmed in more than 40 countries, and seen many religious rites and services of all kinds.  I’ve seen voodoo and Santeria ceremonies in
the Caribbean and South America, animism in Africa, and strange, hybrid Catholic-folk religion services near the headwaters of the Amazon.  But in all those experiences, I can’t ever remember once being “offended.”

What is it about our culture when we’ve become so easily offended?  I have to admit that I don’t see it when a Buddhist shares his faith.  And we live in a time when it’s political incorrect to have any issues with Islam (in some European countries it’s illegal to criticize Islam.)  So why is Christianity such a lightening rod?  And why is it when you bring up the subject people get so bent out of shape?

It’s an important question because the issue is a major obstacle to the continuing dialogue between people of differing faiths…

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