I’ve been in this game for a long time. Back in the middle of the 2000s, I observed that people of Muslim and Indian origin had sensitive and peculiar reactions to criticisms of their religion. Muslim cases are well known. Less well known is the violence and menace associated with the Birmingham Repertory Theatre play which affected Sikh sensitivities.
Then there was this, 5 Die in India During Protests Over Falwell:
Five people were killed in western India today in clashes between Hindus and Muslims that started during protests over remarks by the Rev. Jerry Falwell in which he called the prophet Muhammad a terrorist, the police said.
An American preacher says something offensive about Muslims, and Hindus and Muslims start killing each other in India! Absurd. Ridiculous. Barbaric.
I may not have said it in those words but that’s what I was thinking. In contrast, in the West religious beliefs are not sacred, and we can express content and derision without worry.
Or so I thought. Over the past few years, there has been a tendency in American culture to emphasize sensitivities, hurt feelings, and emotional reactions, over reason, when it comes to offense. Indians, and Muslims, were offended at criticisms of their religions and identities because religion and identity were sacred for them. Well, it turns out that in the West we’re going back to that state of affairs as well.
It seems that human cultural forms have the lowest energy state. And that state is a sort of identitarian honor culture.
I still think your religions are dumb. But when in glass houses…