Mia Michaels wears a military jacket with upside down chevrons. A shit storm ensues. She apologizes. She didn’t mean to offend anyone, she says. Wade Robinson choreographs a piece that he calls “anti-war”. A shit storm ensues. Nigel Lythgoe, the Executive Producer, apologizes on behalf of Robinson with a long and academic analysis of patriotism. Sorry for offending anyone, Lythgoe says, adding that we all support the troops.
It’s times like these that I feel how old I am because I’m going to give a “back in my day” speech.
But dammit, people! When we expressed our opposition to the War in Vietnam, we didn’t apologize for offending people with our marches and our protests and our sit-ins and our music and our drug culture — all of which were intended very much to offend. There were people risking their lives and freedom to take to the streets and occupy government buildings all for the purpose of offending the powers that be. And now people are afraid to wear a coat?
So what has happened? Complacency? Cowardice? People don’t really care as much as they say the do? What? I mean, a fucking jacket? A fucking dance recital? And they shake at the knees when somebody says, “Boo!”?
I wore a military jacket (my evil brother’s) with the chevrons ripped off and peace patches sewed in their place. I was a bad ass Marxist Existentialist Atheist who would have screamed “Fuck You!” at anyone who said they were offended. Their offense would identify them as a person who was keeping the war machine going.
At this point, I think war resisters — including the Congress critters who run their mouths about it all the fucking time — ought to grow a fucking pair. Offend people in power, don’t apologize to them. Act like you fucking mean what you say.
And while I’m at it, get off my lawn!