posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 03:07 PM
What I value most are compassion and communication when disagreeing with others, learning about one another's positions and feelings rather than
trying to destroy or attack them out of anger or ego (though, being human, we have all been guilty of this from time to time.) I know that's just one
person's opinions... just like the more aggressive ones out there, which are everyone's prerogative. But this has made me reluctant at times to take
part in political discourse here on ATS, because throughout this election cycle - and before, obviously - I've observed derogatory ad hominem
rhetoric thrown around by all "sides" here on ATS. "Libtards." "Republican sociopaths." "Idiots." "Morons." "Shills." "Sheep."
"Pathetic." "Vermin." The list goes on and on.
Regardless of whether you're a supporter of a specific political party or ideology, you're apolitical, a supporter of a fringe political movement,
you believe the whole thing is a sham to start with, or much like me simply wash your hands of virtually the entire process, I have seen a ton of
vitriol lately. So, I ask those of you who have been understandably passionate and at times vehemently so with regard to the current political climate
and conflicts, even if you feel the above sentiments (and others) are perfectly valid, can you now take a deep breath and consider a return to
civility and dialogue when expressing differences of opinion?
Can we at last find it within ourselves to calmly and respectfully articulate our differences, hold some modicum of respect and empathy for one
another, and communicate? This is my humble plea to my fellow members of this community. I believe we are mature, informed, and thoughtful enough to
do so. We all have a right to an opinion and to express it. And yes, that includes anger, outrage, and (other than potential TOS violations I should
say) even heated arguments. That is your prerogative, and I am not implying that you are somehow a bad person for engaging in it.
But might it not be preferable to instead listen to one another? In my opinion, there is no danger in listening to someone. To entertain or at
least hear out a position, without necessarily embracing it. If you are certain of your beliefs and positions, what is the danger in discussion and
communication? No one can force you into changing your mind if you don't want to. And it's doubtful that you will change anyone else's mind by,
essentially, yelling at them. Moreover, the expression of your points and counterpoints when disagreeing with someone are arguably better served by
reasoned calm and being articulate rather than appearing defensive and angry, are they not?
Please consider this, if you will. Just one more opinion to add to everyone else's. Peace.