I’m confused by people who look at the world in binary. Black and white. Right and wrong. Us and them. Most people who see the world this way, are highly opinionated as well. Not a bad quality to have as such, but is the world that simple?
Being opinionated becomes an issue when there is an equally opinionated person at the other end. If the convictions of both parties are built on top of good insights, the discussion between them would be interesting to follow. However, in most scenarios discussion around politics never rises to this level.
Instead of discussions, we have dissing and cussing; low blows and taunts. The whole affair is disgusting for someone who wants to understand different viewpoints.
Such intolerance (I’m not referring to any specific political party or ideology when I say this) to contrarian viewpoints seems to be just a symptom of a bigger problem. Political and social polarization and that is what is on the rise. Polarization can be harmful for a society, I have seen the effect it had in Bahrain. It seems to be on the rise here as well.
I don’t have any solution to the problem. It is not a problem with a solution that can be summed up in a blog post either. Perhaps it might take a whole generation or a social revolution for a change to set in. I don’t know. All I know is that this incessant clash of ideologies is numbing for people in the middle like me.
Every opinionated person should read the books written by George RR Martin. You know, the books that eventually were turned into the brilliant TV show The Game of Thrones?
Each chapter is written from the perspective of a character. Almost always the character thinks highly of themselves and thinks they are making a smart move (Yes Sansa, I’m looking at you, you silly girl). As a reader however, you know it’s stupid. You’re also getting the viewpoint of the scenario from another character’s perspective.
Being opinionated must be like this right? You think you’re right, smart and a bad ass, but are you really truly one? By the time the reality sinks in it just might be too late.