posted on Mar, 30 2010 @ 04:28 PM
Before anybody attempts to give me a civics lecture, I know everybody in the US is entitled to their opinions. I know everybody in the US gets one
vote regardless of whether they are rich or poor, ignorant or educated, White or Black, etc.
This does not mean everybody's opinions should matter. When it comes to issues that involve complex issues and require specialized expertise to
understand, the only opinions that should matter are the opinions of people who have expertise in the area.
In our current political discourse, the opinions of climate scientists on global warming are given just as much weight as Glen Beck's opinions. In
the current political discourse, the CBO's opinion on whether the Health care reform bill is deficit neutral is given just as much weight as the
opinion of some angry uneducated tea bagger.
To analogize, let us assume you have an Uncle Harry who lives in Ohio. I have never set foot in Ohio, let alone met your Uncle Harry. I am entitled
to have any opinion I want about your Uncle Harry. I can speak my mind about your Uncle Harry.
However, if an important decision were to be made that involved assessing your Uncle Harry's character, my opinion should not matter. One should
consult Uncle Harry's friends, coworkers, family, and neighbors. One would be a fool to rely on my opinion of your Uncle Harry. In fact, any
sensible person would ignore my opinion. The best opinions about your Uncle Harry would be the people that have had close relationships with him that
have lasted for years.
When it comes to American politics, we seem to show little or any regard for those that have spent years learning, studying, and working with Uncle
Harry. This is dangerous because if we want to understand Uncle Harry, we should rely on those closest to him, not on those who hardly know him.