People value their own opinion more than they value anyone else’s. That is to be expected, we are narcissistic beings with a high cognitive functions. But when are we going to realize that everything is built on opinion. Any research we read was first someone’s opinion that was then enforced by the data collected. Until you get that substantiated support, what do we consider the right opinion?
The truth is we can’t, and we should have different opinions. If we all had the same opinion this world would be pretty boring. Arguing about them should be a time of reflecting, critical thinking, and at times fun. Some out there don’t see it that way.
I like defending my point of view and enjoy the verbal thrust and parry, and yet it is rare that I find someone else who is willing to do the same. My favorite responses are as follows:
“No, you’re wrong…”
So, if I’m wrong give me the evidence. Don’t tell me I’m wrong and then continue to go off on a tangent that has nothing to back it up other than your opinion. If you’re going to bluntly tell me I’m wrong then you better have big guns. I have been part of many debates with people who would say stuff like “I thrive on debates,” and then proceed to put this forth as an “argument.” This is not a legitimate way to try and prove someone wrong. Instead it just shows that critical thinking isn’t as much of a factor in the current thought process.
“That’s just your opinion”
No shit it’s my opinion that’s why I said it. I wouldn’t give you back your opinion, nor would I give you the opinion of the homeless man two streets over that I magically learned through my mind reading powers. I’m not a fan of TwitchPlaysPokemon (TPP), but I can’t stand watching lets plays either. A friend in a class started talking about how he hasn’t seen any of TPP and another student started saying how great it is to watch, and I watched TPP on a few different occasions so I gave him some of the cons of the stream. I also let it known that I don’t care for it and all I get told is “that’s just your opinion.” Yes, it was my opinion, just like how you were saying how good it is was yours. My opinion wasn’t the same so there for it didn’t mean as much.
I get a little sad when college students are presented with an opposing opinion the best way they can argue it is to just avoid it. It doesn’t matter if it is something you aren’t interested in arguing, that is an idea we need to get out of our heads. At some point you should expect to argue something you aren’t interested in, so why avoid the opportunities to practice? If we can’t learn to argue the points on something we enjoy then how do we know we like something in the first place?
Many times I have liked something that many others have said they didn’t, but I was able to point out and speak intelligently about what I liked and why I liked it. Saying it’s bad because “it is” or it’s good because “it is,” is not an argument either for or against something. I feel that even though the chance of having to argue something is slim it is always important to know where you stand, and realizing that there are other opinions about it out there too. I have been told many times that I’m closed minded, because I don’t tend to see eye to eye with some people.
But I’m always willing to hear arguments against what I say, yet very often they don’t except mine because it’s just too different from their own. So, who is really the closed minded one in this situation? I don’t think it’s the accused.