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June 13, 2012 / Dale Melchin

On the Opinions of Others

Warning!  This is a stream of consciousness rant.  Anything I say may come off as angry, emotional, irrational, ridiculous or just plain stupid or psychotic.  I do this kind of writing once a week to show that we all have a side to us that does need to get out or else we explode!  Now, on tonight’s topic.

If you’ve been reading me for any length of time you will know that I am a conservative who is constantly pulled further to the right or to the middle depending upon the time of day, phase of the moon, or the weather, or what I saw on CNN or who I happen to be trolling at a given moment.  Respect it, deal with it!

Also recognize that there are 6 billion plush people in the world who do not agree with me on all or even any of positions at a given time.  Fine, I respect that.

I also understand that there are several people who read this blog who may agree or disagree with my point of view.  That is also fine.  I respect that as well.

What bothers me is when respect does not go both ways.  It really shouldn’t bother me but it does.  In dealing with issues of differentiation both parties need to come to the discussion with a general sense of respect and a desire for understanding and shouldn’t try to make the other person surrender their position just because each person thinks they are right.

Now, I confess, I’m a bit of a provocateur when it comes to my writing.  But ultimately, I respect my opponents or people who take an opposing position to my own because I respect the humanity in that person, and they came by their opinions honestly and for a variety of reasons.  Our worldviews are vast and complex constructs that are built over time consciously and unconsciously, through study and the influence of others.  I go into any discussion realizing I’m probably not going to sell them on my position on the first “call” and that’s not really my point.  I actually like going into a discussion to exchange ideas.

The point though, is RESPECT.  Respect the other person.  Go into the discussion with that attitude in mind and express it from the beginning.  It keep the debate from getting personal.  Go the extra mile to make sure you understand the other person’s position.  Keep your emotions out of it (something I’m having to work on).  However, if you give respect, make sure you demand that respect in return.  If you don’t get, it not just on intellectual pursuits, but in anything else respectfully disengage from the interaction.

 

To conclude:  Respect yourself, respect the other person, have a spirit of goodwill toward your opponents, and maybe just maybe we might actually get something done in the intellectual and political arenas.

 

 

 

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One Comment

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  1. Erica / Jun 17 2012 2:34 pm

    Which is why I rarely argue with people anymore. Also I read “six billion plush people” and choked on my coffee.

    Love, your Spelling Nazi Wife

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