Here is the quickest of PSAs:

If you’re upset that everyone doesn’t do things your way – for example, you’re upset that everyone doesn’t say “Merry Christmas” – you are likely “punching down”, my friend.

“Punching down” is the idea of making fun of or exercising power over a group that doesn’t have as much standing as you do. Like:

  • Bosses flirting with subordinates – a boss has power over their subordinates’ lives
  • Men criticizing women – men are, in general, in a privileged position over women
  • Straight folk joking about “fags” – Dude, first off, you don’t get to say “fags”. And second, I can think of fewer groups more in trouble in American than the LGBTQ community right now.

Punching down is a form of bullying.

Let people do things differently from you. Let people say “Happy holidays” without criticism. It’s diversity, and it’s wonderful.


Related: punch up,

Remember that it’s choose your own activism week. Have you pursued your liberty lately?