Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Intentionally Misunderstanding

I was over at www.myobsaidwhat.com the other day, a place for women to submit some of the more 'winning' quotes from OBs, L&D nurses, nurses, midwives, and the occassional anestisiologist or pediatricians concerning infertility, pregnancy, miscarriage, birth, post-partum, breastfeeding, or early parenting. Despite what the occassional troll has to say MOBSW doesn't demonize the medical community, nor even OBs (who the majority of quotes come from), but it does allow a place for women to vent on those members of the profession(s) who *should* be demonized. But it's also a place to see one of, what I believe to be, the hallmarks of the politically correct era, intentional misunderstanding. Now I'm not talking about the submitters, it's a little hard to misconstrue an OB saying 'oh stop yelling, you obviously know how to open your legs' while he forces a woman's legs apart while she's yelling 'stop! That hurts, stop!' (Somehow it's not molestation/abuse if your attacker is in a white coat).
No, I'm refering to the occassional doctors, nurses, and laymen who intentionally misunderstand a comment made so they can be righteously offended by something a commenter has said. Usually it crops up on an especially horrific quote where the ob/rn/midwife/other is being even more inhuman than usual so there are lots of comments along the lines of 'what a complete &*!@! Doctors like this should lose their license and get tossed in a jailcell with a 400lb man named bubba!' (I'm not specifically quoting anyone here) And after a few dozen women have expressed their extreme displeasure at OBs LIKE THIS ONE, some OB (thankfully the sight almost never draws she-who-should-not-be-named...if you don't know who I'm talking about consider yourself lucky) comes on and chews us out because 'not all OBs are like this and I am always very respectful to my patients, they all love me, etc'.
We all know there are wonderful, respectful, and caring OBs/etc out there, that's why we said 'like this' rancid goat when we were commenting.
Now surely professionally aren't the only ones who do this. Sometimes it's a layman who has taken offense. These usually come in references to forced c-sections, inductions, or breastfeeding quotes. Some jerk OB is overheard saying 'there's nothing wrong with this baby, I just need to leave by 5 tonight.' As they are wheeling away mom for an 'emergency' c-section, usually after poor mom has been told she *must* have a c-section *now* or she's putting her baby's life in peril. So, of course, there are a bunch of comments along the line of 'this is why our c-section rate is so high, doctors should have to document a real, medical need for the c-section along with collaborative proof and insurance/people should refuse to pay for unneeded c-sections.' And then someone will come back with 'i'm so tired of everyone being so judgemental against women who have had c-sections! My c-section saved my son's life!'
the problem is hardly limited to such situations. Regardless of what you read, listen to, or who you converse with today it seems almost impossible to get through a full day without someon taking something out of context just so they can be offended. I know, I know, to the cuurent PC mentality nothing is more sacred than being victimized. Victimhood is to be claimed whenever and wherever possible, and if it isn't possible victims are free to re-interpret anything said to them to support their inherient victimhood status (unless you are a white married Christian male, then you can only be an offender, and anything said towards you that is offensive is either your fault for misinterpreting what your victim actually said, or you deserved because whoever said it was just defending themselves.). I get that, as much as I hate PC bs, I do understand the mindset (however insane, yes, go ahead and feel offended if you think PC-ism isn't insane) that mindset is.
What I don't understand is why the people who are misquoted/understood *on purpose* seem to fall all over themselves apologizing. Why do people bow down and take such nonsense? I mean, I assume most of the time people know what they said, and most people I've met (there are exceptions) rarely go around being offensive. So I've got to assume that 99% of the time they meant what they said and were only intending to offend...the specific group they described. So why in the world do they go tripping over their words to apologize to someone *not* within the specific group they were talking about.
If I say 'i think all people named Alyssa are jerks!' Then someone named Alyssa is free to feel offened, and if they could show to me they aren't a jerk I would be proven wrong and should (and would) stand up and apologize. But if someone named Alyma came back with 'well *my* name starts with an 'A' and I'm not a jerk, you are being a judgemental bigot by assuming all people with 'A' names are jerks'. They don't have any standing to object, I wasn't talking about them, in fact I especially excluded them by defining those named 'Alyssa'. Not only do I not feel obliged to apologize to Alyma, I'm far more likely to amend my original statement to include 'and apparently one person named 'Alyma' can't tell the difference between a 6 letter name and a 5 letter name.' And I'm not overly sarcastic or anything, but someone trying to make me into an offender just so they can be a victim isn't getting any sympathy from me. So why the heck are they getting it from so many others?


Anonymous Tracy said...

I love it! I hadn't thought of their comments in that way, but they always make me roll my eyes when I read them and now I know why. It is so PC that it's awful. Sadly our society seems to be so egocentric that most people take things personally that they really shouldn't!

1:44 AM  

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