Allow me to be blunt. Victimhood culture is one of the most lethal threats to American society, and it cannot be allowed to grow. It’s a vicious cancer that will eat away at our national soul and cause irreparable damage to our free society if we don’t act.
Yes, it’s that serious.
When I first started reading about victimhood culture, I knew it was evil. After learning more, it became apparent that victimhood does far more damage than most people think.
Should more Americans start adopting a victimhood mentality, it could have huge ramifications for our culture. Why? Victimhood stifles free speech and creates morally dependent people who don’t know how to handle conflict or operate in reality.
So what exactly is victimhood culture? No doubt you have heard this term quite a bit, especially when talking about things like millennials or the world of academia.
The best definition of victimhood culture comes from a study that was performed by Bradley Campbell and Jason Manning. Together, they wrote an article for Comparative Sociology entitled “Microaggressions and Moral Cultures.” The article takes a look at the victimhood culture that is spreading like the proverbial wildfire throughout our society.
According to Campbell and Manning, the culture of victimhood is “characterized by concern with status and sensitivity to slight combined with a heavy reliance on third parties. People are intolerant of insults, even if unintentional, and react by bringing them to the attention of authorities or to the public at large. Domination is the main form of deviance, and victimization a way of attracting sympathy, so rather than emphasize either their strength or inner worth, the aggrieved emphasize their oppression and social marginalization.”
In English, this means that victims are people who react to perceived offenses by broadcasting the offense to others. Instead of brushing it off and assuming that the other person had good intentions, they publicly lash out against the offense. They don’t bother to have a civil discussion with the offender. They just accuse them of being offensive.
There are two reasons why a victim does this: to shame the offender and to show everyone else how “oppressed” they are.
Here’s an example. Let’s say I’m a highly sensitive African American snowflake and I have a white acquaintance. One day, this acquaintance comments on how “articulate” I am.
Instead of taking the compliment as it was intended, I tell my colleague that his comment was offensive because people don’t generally use that word for white people. They only use it for black folks who speak decent English. Micro-aggression alert!
Then, to fulfill my social justice warrior duty, I get on Facebook and write a long meandering post about how this white dude oppressed me by commenting on my ability to speak well.
There it is folks: victimhood culture in a nutshell.
This mentality has created a culture where people are perpetually offended. They will take the slightest misstep — real or perceived — as an act of oppression and will respond with aggression.
As you have already guessed, victimhood culture is a fundamental component of leftist theology. It’s one of the most powerful weapons they wield. And they wield it with impunity.
But wait – there’s more.
As stated earlier, victimhood culture is one of the most dangerous threats to our society. Not only does it harm the people with the victim mentality, but it also hurts the people around them.
There are three main reasons why victimhood culture is dangerous:
- It promotes moral dependence
- It stifles free speech
- It makes people vulnerable to manipulation
If these three things are allowed to take root in our society, we won’t survive the impact.
Moral dependence is an innate component of victimhood culture. When one has a victim mentality, they look to external solutions to conflicts rather than resolving the problem themselves.
They may use the court system or other forms of authority. For example, a college student might appeal to the school administration to help her deal with a conflict. In other cases, a person might just take to social media, or tell his story to all of his friends.
Of course, there are times when getting outside help is warranted. Some disputes can only be resolved through the court system.
However, a victim will use external sources for any perceived slight. They use other people as a form of social pressure or instruments of punishment. Examples of methods a victim might use are protests, social media posts, blogging, call out culture, or even old-fashioned gossip.
This is the behavior of spoiled little brats. Not adults.
The problem with victimhood behavior is that it diminishes a person’s ability to find solutions on their own. Thus, they are unable to handle their own conflicts in a healthy manner. Victimhood culture is a clear and present danger to free speech. One of the primary goals of a victim is to keep the other person from saying what they wish.
Words such as homophobia, transphobia, Islamophobia, sexism, and racism are weapons used by the left to silence their opponents. They don’t attack the person’s arguments. Instead, they attack the person. Free speech is one of the cornerstones of American society. It’s one of the principles this nation was founded upon. If victims have their way, people won’t have the freedom to say what’s on their minds.
Ben Shapiro, a podcaster, and journalist has repeatedly been banned, shouted down, and interrupted when he has spoken at universities. DePaul University actually threatened to have Shapiro arrested if he set foot on campus, even though he an invited guest. This is a prime example of victimhood culture at its best.
In his article, Arthur C. Brooks also says that “Victimhood claims the right to say who is and is not allowed to speak.”
The victimhood culture makes it easier to manipulate people. It’s one of the most insidious methods that many politicians use to get elected. The better you are at convincing people that they’re helpless victims, the easier it will be to position yourself as their Messiah.
As much as it pains me to write this, using the victimhood culture to gain votes is exactly what the Democratic Party has done to the black community. The black community has voted overwhelmingly for the Democratic Party for 40 years.
Because the Democrats perpetuate the lie that all of the problems that black people face are the result of white racism. They have convinced us to accept victim status. And they have told us that leftist ideas are the answer.
Here’s the horrible truth. Most of the inner cities that are run by Democrats are full of crime. They suffer greater poverty. Their education systems are failing. This has had a devastating impact on the black community.
And yet, despite these horrendous failures on the part of the Democrats, black people still vote for Democrats. Black’s should have “fired” the Democrats a long time ago. But they haven’t. This demonstrates the power of victimhood.
The threat posed by victimhood culture cannot be underestimated. It’s not just an annoying cultural trend. It’s a faulty way of thinking, and it’s infecting the minds of our society. Somehow, we must show these people that their victimhood mentality is destroying their very personhood.
We also need to look inward.
While you may not be a full-fledged member of the victim culture, there might be some areas where you use your “victim card.” We all do it to some extent. But if we can eliminate the victimhood mentality within ourselves, we can work harder to eradicate it from our society.
And that’s a damn good thing.