As with a lot of my writings, I have an insatiable inability to keep away from didactically dissecting individual words and their meaning in an effort to bring the point of the writing to fruition.
For this writing, I’m afraid, it will be no different.
Ostracism: Exclusion, by general consent, from social acceptance, privileges, friendship, etc. In ancient Greece: Temporary banishment of a citizen, decided upon by popular vote.
Cancel Culture: Refers to the popular practice of withdrawing support for or canceling a public figure or a company after they have done or said something considered objectionable or offensive.
Shaming: The painful feeling arising from the consciousness of something dishonorable, improper, ridiculous, done by oneself or another. To publicly humiliate or shame for being or doing something specified.
Do you get the feeling that you have heard these words before? Well, that would be because at some point in your life, you have experienced it, whether you know it or not. Need proof? OK. Sure, you bet, I’ve got it right here. You were a child at some point in your life, and you, like 85% of the rest of the population on planet earth went to school at a young age and quickly realized that you did not like school because the other kids made fun of you, as so with the others that you only saw every once in a while. Back then, you would call it “bullying.”
It is one of the earliest and most heartbreaking tactics that children learn. Because social connections are powerful, taking those connections away is a weapon. So kids are left out, not included, not talked to, ignored.
Ostracism from one’s peers may be a passive form of aggression, but it is a painful form all the same. And, like most of the other battles from the playground, it doesn’t end with childhood.
Based on some recent research, it continues into the workplace, and it does so at a level that managers and attorneys may not fully appreciate. The research comes from a survey of 3,400 American workers in a number of different companies.
According to the research, summarized, active bullying is a problem in the workplace, but the greater problem is ostracism. Compared with those who had experienced harassment, those being ignored felt more inclined to quit their job, less connected to their job and had a greater number of health problems.
Now that we have that out of the way, it should be noted that these words are not new by any means, as a matter of fact, they date as far back as time itself.
The overused term “Cancel Culture,” was thrust into the spotlight in 2017 and as you can imagine, the media loves a new buzz word or phrase to run like a freight train, 24/7 into the conscious mind of the population till that population thinks that it’s “right” or “normal,” only to discover later, that what they were pumping out into the airwaves with a flurry of that of a rabid dog, that it had a side effect that they now have to do “damage control” to make it go away. Meaning that they now have to find a new buzz word or phrase to distract the population from the previous damage.
As to be expected, those of the population that scratched their heads in disbelief, and thought to themselves, “You’re kidding. Right?”
Unfortunately, there are a vast number of the population that have forgotten their school years and hopefully, their parents taught them better. Sadly, that does not appear to the case, and hence, the term spread like wild fire to the point that it is now not only a major part of politics in the US and UK, it has expanded to the point of no return. Business owners are now faced with the threat of everyone that walks in the door; thinking to themselves, “Is this going to be one of them?”
With me so far? In the years following 2017, there have been a number – far to many in my opinion – that have been arrested, dragged through the court system for merely expressing their thought. The sad by-product of this action is that the court system is clogged beyond comprehension as it is and now, we have all of these court cases for expressing thought. Does this remind you of George Orwell yet? In the book “1984,” there a few pages that specifically deal with the “children snitching to the authorities their parents thoughts,” so the authorities, with glee, can now punish those who dare to speak what is rightfully a freedom of speech. And who else will be front-and-center to take in the show? The media of course.
In recent months, there have been campaigns by actors Bryan Cranston and none other than Rowan Atkinson to create awareness to not only curb this unhealthy trend, but to get politicians to realize that the laws they are creating are disastrous to the health of the global population.
Bryan Cranston recently stated: “We live in this cancel culture of people erring and doing wrong – either on purpose or by accident – and there’s less forgiveness in our world.” “I think we’re unfortunately in a coarser environment. I think our societies have become harder and less understanding, less tolerant, less forgiving.”
Rowan Atkinson recently stated: “It is scary for anyone who’s a victim of that mob, and it fills me with fear about the future.” “A Medieval mob roaming the streets looking for someone to burn.” “The problem we have online is that an algorithm decides what we want to see, which ends up creating a simplistic, binary view of society.” “It becomes a case of either you’re with us or against us. And if you’re against us, you deserve to be ‘cancelled'”
For anyone that is old enough to remember some of the movies that were not only widely excepted, but were blockbusters in the movie theaters, would remember the movie Blazing Saddles or Spaceballs and many other movies that were produced by Mel Brooks. In more recent times, the animated series of Family Guy and American Dad. All of those productions were littered as far as one can see with insults, criticisms, innuendos, you name it, it was there.
The other by-product of this cancel culture is, how is a stand-up comedian, or any number of comedians, whether in person, on-line or in a movie supposed to make you laugh? Any consideration to this?
So what does our future hold? It’s up to the population that is scratching their heads to ask those that have pushed this ideology to far to go back to grade school to remember the lessons learn about bullying.
I’ve included a speech from Rowan Atkinson in the video below as I feel it is worth watching.