Outrage Fatigue

Outrage Fatigue March 15, 2016

Ah, Daylight Savings, how you continue to ruin everything. I know it’ll be ok in the long run, but I am not having any success at laying aside the bitterness of my soul about having my life ruined right now. Outrage, really, is what I continue to feel.

This morning especially I appear to be not alone. I’ve just taken a little meander through the Internet and everybody is so angry. Slate is angry about a bunch of stuff, I couldn’t really take it in–fat shaming maybe? CT has a big Andy Stanly apology because we were all angry about that. Huffpo seems angry about Trump, and really, who isn’t? What else? I’m not really awake enough to remember where to go to get the news. Anyway, there wasn’t any News this morning, there was only outraged criticism.

It seems like that has become the bread and butter of life–outrage, criticism, anger, offendedness. If a person steps just slightly to one side or the other, the whole internet will leap up to scream and shout in anger. Isn’t that what Twitter is for? Just to fan the flame of bitterness and rage? You could be a Christian or….what other kinds of religions are there?….boy the tired is really the substance of who I am today. I’ll just not worry about pointing fingers at other religions and stick to what I know. Christians! Even are swept up in the Let’s Just Be Offended All The Time Meme. I watched Matt sit at his computer yesterday reading about the Pirate Christian flap (sorry, no link, would not even know where to begin getting one) and wondered and wondered about What On Earth.

I mean, it is fun, to take offense. Taking offense is the funnest thing ever. Moral outrage is the best booster of the self that I know about. I really love it when I can catch somebody out in sin or ugliness, especially something I myself have not fallen into. Pointing the finger of offense is a great life giving river of joy that keeps us waking up and getting out of bed every morning.

And on a personal level, being injured by another is essential to motivation and self esteem. I am good. She could have been good, but now she has hurt me. I will drink deep of the cup of bitterness and rage, and boy will she be sorry.

But really, I’m the one that’s sorry. I’m kind of bored by it all. Rage is exhausting, and after a while, not that interesting. Rage is not the same as having a discussion, which can be a nice thing to have. Consider how much the Body Image thing is an interesting concept to talk about. I don’t really like my body and I gather, from Slate or Drudge or whatever, that nobody else does either. There’s lots and read and think about on the matter of the self in the body, the body as an expression of the self, and what is the self anyway. I would enjoy a chat on just that subject. BUT NO. Instead, Fat Shame! Even Obama didn’t escape this morning. He said The Wrong Thing about body image and his girls and Slate will probably Never forgive him. (Was it Slate? Or Salon? Why am I ruining my life by going there!?)

Don’t worry, I’m not working myself up into a rage about all the rage. I’m not even saying it should stop and we should all be better and holier. I’m just weary of it. It’s kind of boring. It may get me a tiny distance down the road of life but eventually it stalls out and I have to expend more energy I don’t have pouring fuel all over it. Maybe DLT isn’t all that bad if I can’t work up the energy to freak out over The Unfairness of It All.

And it’s so old, as in, ancient. I always like to examine the anger surrounding the last week of Jesus’ life, the offense taking on every side–Caiaphas’ moral outrage in the face of Jesus, the crowd’s screaming for blood. It’s not like humanity is any different than it has ever been. The thing that makes us the most angry is a perfect God who is perfectly just and gloriously merciful. We can’t bear to see him standing there, abused and destroyed by Our Sin. We can’t help being angry, angry enough to die, as my favorite prophet so trenchantly and bitterly says.

The only way out of anger is forgiveness, absorbing the wrath into your own self and letting the other person go free. There’s no way to do that on our own, without having first been forgiven. Maybe I’ll try to set a good example and forgive the government for changing the time.

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