Suppose someone says something like this:

Mexicans are great at mowing lawns!

Let's also suppose that you, the listener, are not Mexican, however you find the statement insulting to Mexicans and therefore feel insulted on their behalf. What is a word that would describe the state of being that you are in?

  • Officious? Prodnose? – Tim Lymington Oct 17 '14 at 13:02
  • @TimLymington Ahhh what? Neither of those words seem even close... – LCIII Oct 17 '14 at 13:04
  • My point was that if you are not Mexican, you have no business deciding what they feel, or being offended on their behalf. – Tim Lymington Oct 17 '14 at 13:06
  • 2
    You're not offended on someone's behalf... you're just offended. You don't even know if the Mexicans would find the statement offensive. YOU find it offensive and the emotion YOU felt is offended. – Digital Chris Oct 17 '14 at 13:09
  • The groundswell in global sanctimony which has arisen in recent decades is generally termed outrage by its proponents (or "consciousness- or awareness-raising" if its emotional dimension is characterized more by pity and charity than offense). – Dan Bron Oct 17 '14 at 13:11

I suggest

Second-hand offended

Here is a good article: Second-hand Offended Is Offensive

Do you think I'm being politically incorrect to use the name "American Indian?" Well, 92% of them preferred American Indian over Native American, or any other name concocted by the "second-hand offended."


Why not empathy

The ability to understand and share the feelings of another. [Oxford Dictionaries Online]

There is a difference between sharing the feelings of another and taking on the role of spokesperson. If you want to convey the latter role, you may be a champion of their interests

A person who fights or argues for a cause or on behalf of someone else: a champion of women’s rights [Oxford Dictionaries Online]

Whether such spokesmanship (spokespersonship?) is welcomed by the target group is a question of complex social relationships rather than language.

  • Empathy is what such a listener would claim: whether the claim is valid or is itself insulting is another matter entirely. – Tim Lymington Nov 3 '14 at 15:53

'Proxy' comes to mind. A strange thing to have to say. LOL


You are disgusted at the other fellow's bad taste, and you might be contemptuous of him, but you are not in any way insulted or injured.

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