I still disagree completely with this assertion. As I said before, this only applies to things abstract, ie. an idea, an instance, and the like.
Even the link you provided further proves my point. There's no indication that it can be used towards living things. "It" will only refer to a concept--like the fear of a bug, not a bug itself.
I agree, "it" would be better in the original phrase, since it refers to an insult (i.e. a "concept--like" notion).I suspect that "shrug someone off" would have to be literal (move so as to remove part of a person's anatomy from your shoulder).
Whereas "shrug something off" could be literal (move so as to remove something from your shoulder) or metaphorical (minimise the importance of).
"It" is definitely better than "him" in Dimme's (metaphorical) sentence
On Google are plenty of examples that show it is indeed used this way, including this sad instance:I agree, "it" would be better in the original phrase, since it refers to an insult (i.e. a "concept--like" notion).
In my previous post I merely wanted to explain the various possible uses of shrug. When used with a living 'thing', it could be seen, indeed, as synonymous to "brush off".