Happy Thursday

The weekend is almost here.

Let’s have a little conversation. I’ve been sitting back (not on the couch since the wind seems to have shifted on that for the moment) and watching, reading and listening. I spend a fair amount of time on different views. Mind you I still have my own view but I like to see what all sides have to say about different things.

Overall I’m a pretty live and let live kind of person. Don’t inflict your stuff on me and I won’t inflict mine on you. If you don’t like ice cream I don’t care. I don’t understand but it’s your palate not mine. If I could eat it for every meal and did you probably don’t care. You’d probably mention in passing that you don’t understand how one person can eat that much ice cream*. That would be about the extent of the conversation unless you pushed it further. I wouldn’t. That isn’t me.

I’ve been following a few issues that are pretty mainstream in the media currently. The arguments on both side have merits if viewed in a vacuum. It isn’t until both sides are looked at can the flaws ON BOTH SIDES be seen. Life isn’t lived in a vacuum so in practice everything has flaws.

When I was a kid it was commonplace to be told to look at the other person’s point of view when having a dispute. The words how do you think they feel were even said. Using this method lets someone get a feel (notice I didn’t say understand) for the other side. Is this not a thing anymore? Don’t people put themselves in someone else’s shoes? I remember being told when writing an essay to put forth both sides of an argue and put facts to support your position. Don’t they teach that in school anymore?

I follow a spicy thread in a forum on Ravelry just to watch the back and forth on the different incendiary topics. There is a lot of what I’d call insulting (when you attack the person as being dumb or uninformed or attack where they get their information and not stick to the topic) and a small amount of data. It’s a big photos or it didn’t happen kind of place. For example if I said I ate chocolate ice cream I better post a photo or they’d argue with me that it was vanilla or that I’d eaten liver. Even though it was my ice cream, I ate it and tasted it. No photo then they’re right. One time I’ve seen someone say a person of the opposite position had a good point. Yes, once. And yes, one point. The needle doesn’t move there at all.

I try not to be a what about person when I argue but in a lot of cases the only point that can be brought up is the what about. In heated discussions people rarely move closer in opinion. They often move farther apart. That is the nature of having a conviction, rightly or wrongly. The what about is usually a unicorn thought. Either no one mentions it because it’s contrary to their position or it’s so unusual it’s unlikely to be an important point.

What I often see when two people (or more really) on different sides of an issue argue is a toddler flailing on the floor in a complete meltdown. There is no winner here. There is no productive exchange of ideas. Unless all parties are grownups and can listen and respond like an adult there is no point in entering the conversation.

I have no easy answers to any of the big issues. I have my own personal beliefs which I follow no matter how the wind is blowing. I have no problem with others doing the same. Where I do have a problem is when people tell me what I should believe, how I should feel and how I should behave. They want the choice to do as they wish but don’t want to give others the same choice. I do have a big problem with that.

So feel like expressing your opinion in the comments? How do you think big issues should be dealt with? Do you see any way people with big differences of opinion can get a feel for the other side? As always I’m happy to have back and forth in the comments.

*Just to clarify I don’t eat ice cream for every meal or even every day. You’d probably be surprised to know that I haven’t actually eaten any in a couple of months. It’s just a minimally controversial item that removes talking about a big topic. Imagine the horror if I talked about yarn: acrylic v. wool. There would be blood in the comments. And just so you know, my opinion is that both have pluses and minuses. My stash contains both and I use them in projects as I see fit. In my opinion you are free to do as you see fit.

About nothingbutknit2

I'm a wife, mother and knitter. Watch out for my pointy sticks.
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16 Responses to Happy Thursday

  1. What if doing what you see fit harms others?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. thespazzygimpgirl says:

    It’s hard to reply without knowing the exactitude of the conversation in the mainstream that’s bothering you.

    I’m finding the older I get, the less I know. I was raised with very black and white absolute thinking.

    If it is a topic involving people of color, I try to shut my mouth and tell other white people to shut theirs, because we should be listening to the community the issue is affecting. White people miss so much nuance and create so much noise in those instances.

    I’m trying to remember I’m not an expert on anything, and to look at my points of privilege before I give an opinion.

    I realize I have “token” friends because I still have a lot of passive generational racism baked in, and I am exhausting to educate (despite my eager nature) as I unlearn and unpack it.

    The longer I am on the planet the more I understand there are some issues that “both sides” are detrimental. If one side is saying their religion dictates people outside their religion adhere to their religion, I’m out. I oppose it. If someone thinks their personal opinion should be paramount and it exposes others to danger or physical harm? I am vehemently opposed.

    There is so much nuance – and the media boils it down to sound bites and half facts in order to rush a story and beat the other media dealers to the delivery.

    I sometimes long for the days of my youth, when everything was easy to decide “right” on but then I remember how many people I hurt when I revert to the black and white thinking. I want to be someone that heals the damage I dealt, not someone that creates more without care.

    Liked by 3 people

    • You hit my point. I don’t dictate my beliefs whatever the issues onto others. I don’t think others should dictate their beliefs on me. I believe that many big issues are gray. There isn’t a correct or incorrect answer. I think coming at whatever issues with respect towards the other person is what matters.
      I intentionally left out the big issues because I don’t want the issue to be the distraction from the way the conversation is held.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. thespazzygimpgirl says:

    WordPress won’t let me reply past two sentences.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. thespazzygimpgirl says:

    Whoa! The whole reply showed up. I don’t know how to delete comments I’ve made. I’m sorry for the messy replies cluttering up the field

    Liked by 1 person

  5. People in my community are currently arguing about a zoning change that would allow a company to build a solar farm on 800 acres of what is currently farm land. Most of the conversations start with “Well, you’d be a fool to be opposed to this!” or “Have you done any research on the harm this can cause?” (I’m not taking sides here, by the way. I don’t particularly want this for a lot of reasons but don’t consider myself educated enough on the subject to debate it so I just read all the comments and try to make sense of it all) This normally dissolves into insults on both sides. “You should stop watching Tucker Carlson!” “Well YOU should stop watching CNN!” (Tucker is kinda good looking, by the way)

    I don’t know the answers. I just don’t think anyone listens anymore. It’s all about who yells the loudest.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. chrisknits says:

    I think we have 2 different generations, the ones who were brought up with no gray areas, but have a moral compass, and those who also have no gray areas, but no moral compass. What I mean is, before the “great awakening-do whatever you want-don’t discipline your children” era came about, people had a stark adherence to right/wrong based on their beliefs, and most of them were directed by a moral code, which can be said was rooted in Judaeo Christian beliefs, but not necessarily only religious morals. The latter generation were brought up with NO right/wrong code, only “my truth” beliefs, and not much of a moral code. And ultimately they ended up with the same lack of gray area because they only adhere to “their” code.
    I was brought up to be respectful of others, no matter their beliefs, to try and see from their side, which I am hopeful I instilled in my kids. They were sick of hearing my say “be kind, you don’t know what their situation is like”. But I know from my kids’ experiences in school, not many of their classmates were brought up that way.

    Liked by 1 person

    • When my daughter was in elementary school often as a get to know the students the teacher would send home a little survey. One of the questions often asked what do you want your child to be. My answer was always “kind”. Based on the way some kids treated her the parents didn’t value kindness or even civility.

      Like

  7. Acrylic v. wool: is it heresy when I combine the two?!? Not uncommon in my life – see recent dog sweater!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Not in my book. The wool provides warmth and the acrylic strength. Personally for a dog sweater I’d use washable wool with the acrylic so I could put it in the washer. Myles loves to roll in the grass so his sweaters (which he fights wearing) have to be able to stand up to abuse.

      Liked by 1 person

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