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Park Your Snark in the Dark
It will surprise no one that insulting people does not endear them to you. Even less does it persuade them to change their minds and join you. Still, modern discourse almost always includes insults and name-calling - and that applies to every side of any political debate.
I take glory, as do most people, in wrapping myself up in my opinions and glaring at others. If they aren’t close enough to punch me in the nose, even better. But that feeling is a counter-productive goal for debates.
A much-ignored factor in any exchange of opinion is that I might be wrong.
Check Your Bias
Let’s look at the ship captain of The Titanic. He was a very experienced ship’s captain. The design of The Titanic had been fundementally altered by placing the engine at the end of the ship, however. The captain didn’t have experience with that kind of ship, and felt his experience in steering ships designed otherwise was a reasonable reference for skirting around an iceberg. His captaining adventures led him to have confidence in sailing assessments, to include steering ships. Incorrectly, in his case.
This is all to say, that guy was dead wrong.
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Now if a very experienced sailor, and a noted ship’s captain, can make a dreadful mistake, why would I feel so confident in my worldly assessments? This example only shows how wrong the best of us can be.
From that perspective, none of us have a basis to look down on someone else for having a different opinion. Still, there is no getting away from the reality of current discourse: insults.
So when next we are gluttonously consuming content that affirms how smart or insightful we are, keep one part of your mind aware of the insults that are part of the argument. Because they are almost always there, and don’t help anyone.
We all know super-smart people. They usually need help tying their shoes. It’s not something to aspire to.