Brucker: Sorry about that, I typed up my last set of questions in a hurry. Allow me to better explain. As we know, society tends to let its opinions be heard on almost everything. These opinions escalate greatly when it comes to controversial issues. I’m curious as to how you feel about society’s need to let its views be known in such extreme manners. What do you think about people who cannot express their opinions in a calm manner? Do you feel it is necessary to get a point across? Do you feel there are better ways to exhibit the extent of your sentiments?
Ah, that’s more like it, very clear.
As it happens, I do have a strong opinion about strong opinions. As I have said before, I vowed long ago to avoid getting involved in debates concerning abortion. The reason I did this was because of an experience I had years ago, in which I came across a pro-choice discussion forum online in which someone had posted what she claimed to be “Proof that the Bible is pro-choice!” I was genuinely intrigued, and I read the argument. After reading it, I congratulated the author for doing a pretty good job, and offered constructive criticism on how the argument could be improved. (There were six parts of the argument, and I explained why I felt two of them were unconvincing, and offered a suggestion of an additional Bible verse that could be useful to their argument.)
The author completely missed the fact that I was actually trying to help and latched on to the fact that I was a Christian, assuming I must be a hard-line anti-abortion activist who was only trying to call her an idiot because I must hate pro-choice activists, and by extension, all women. I pointed out that I had never expressed what my position on the issue was, that it in fact was not to the extreme right as she had assumed, and that if she had read my criticism for what it was, I was actually trying to help her make a more convincing argument, even though I admittedly didn’t share her exact viewpoint.
For trying to be friendly and helpful, I was branded by members of the forum as a troll, a misogynist, an idiot, and an all-around hate-filled closed-minded religious fundamentalist. I think it was the first and only time that I lost my temper because of an online discussion.
So I posted a final rant, and never went back. I think it was true then and is true now, and not just for abortion, but so many other issues like same-sex marriage, gun rights, and taxation rates. I said something like, “You people are pathetic! Do you know why you will never solve this issue? It’s because both you on the extreme left and your counterparts on the extreme right are so vehement about the self-righteousness of your respective positions that not only can you not meet on middle ground, but you are so far away from a middle ground that you can’t even hear what those who oppose you are saying! So they’ll keep being woman-hating religious zealots, and you’ll keep being godless feminazi baby-killers because you are too angry to even have a dialogue on the matter, much less search for a solution.”
So in summary, people who are extreme in the way they express their opinions will, in my opinion, find it counter-productive to their cause.