Tuesday, January 21, 2014

On personal opinions

This past weekend Jay Lake posted on his blog a long scroll on the subject that everything conservatives have ever supported historically has been wrong.

Of course, Jay is entitled to his opinion, but my experience in the past has been when you make such blanket statements, you will be called out on it, and Brad Torgersen did so Sunday on Facebook. Brad and Jay quickly got into a rapidly escalating heated discussion.

Like a virulent disease, the discussion quickly burned itself out, with everyone feeling a little stupid, I suppose.

My only contribution to this exchange was the following short and succinct summation of my personal position about exchanging opinions:

I've come to the personal decision that if I know someone because of writing, I will talk to them about writing. If I want to talk politics, I will discuss it with someone I've involved in politics with. If I want to talk religion, I will talk to someone I know from church. 

Mixing up these topics online, to me, has been worse than worthless, because it only leads to argument and fights. Religion, politics, and even stuff as trivial as personal tastes in food, are purely personal.

On the reasons the Masons have prospered as a fraternity is that they explicitly prohibit any discussion of religion or politics within its ranks.


  1. Lou, in the interest of watching a train wreck, do you have links to these posts?

    1. Keith -

      Try this link.


  2. Rollory1:39 PM

    But the principles underlying behavior in one or another sphere will be reflected in behavior in those other spheres. So all you are doing here is trying to avoid noticing a problem in the hopes it will go away.

  3. I prefer to think of it as picking my fights. Besides, I don't think people in one sphere need to know what I am doing in another sphere. I've always thought one of the most basic human rights is the right to be left alone.

  4. Avoidance...pffft. How about "class"? For a change, in this day and age. "Argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men" ---Walt Whitman. Or Emily Dickinson: "They talk of hallowed things aloud, and embarrass my dog."


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