Hey moron. Thanks for reading my column you stupid looser. I’m surprised some brainwashed MSM-watching sheeple could figure out how to operate a computer or smart-phone. Your so dumb that you probably think Trump colluded with the Russians. Your such a stupid libtard that you don’t even realize that Obama deported more people than Trump. Your opinions are stupid and YOUR stupid. SMDH.
Congratulations, you made the mistake of expressing a political opinion on The Internet, where everyone is 100% convinced that they are right 100% of the time.
Oddly enough, I rarely encounter people talking to each other like this in the “real world.” So it begs the question, are people their real selves on the net and just cowards in “real life.” Or is there something about the web that polarizes people and makes them act like angry children?
There’s no need to send me emails letting me know that my opening paragraph is rife with grammar and spelling atrocities. These “errors” are just a few of the insults that have been hurled at yours truly over the last 24 hours.
I have seen these particular mistakes so often, that I have become convinced that there is a strong correlation between not understanding basic contractions like “you’re” and the likelihood that the one who doesn’t understand said contractions will be using them ironically and moronically to insult the intelligence of others.
“No. YOU’RE stupid.”
“So YOUR calling ME stupid?!?!”
“It’s YOU’RE stupid?”
“I’m not the stupid one. God your such a looser!!”
When someone is insulting me for having a differing opinion, I often wonder what they hope to accomplish.
Has there ever been a time in the history of the human existence where one person insulted another’s intelligence and the recipient of said insult said
“You know what? I really am a brainwashed idiot. Thank you for pointing that out. Now I see things your way!!”
It’s doubtful. So I am left to wonder, what is the point of this behavior?
Have we become so bereft of intelligence and humanity that we think that anyone who disagrees with us is subhuman and deserves to be treated poorly? Have we forgotten that on the other end of this exchange that there is another human being who has come to a differing conclusion by taking in and processing different information?
If we are convinced of our own righteousness, shouldn’t we use methods that are likely to deliver the correct information to the misinformed person we are speaking with?
And what about the other person’s humanity?
I have seen people attack others simply for having a different political view, never taking into consideration that the person reading their hateful words more than likely has difficult circumstances in their own life and are perhaps using The Internet to talk to others in hopes of finding distraction from their quiet desperation.
I watched my friend get ripped to shreds on a daily basis from his hospital bed while he was losing (not LOOSING) his battle with cancer. We would tell him to stay off the political forums, because we feared that the stress was accelerating his departure, but it was literally the only thing that provided him respite from the doldrums of spending his final days confined to a hospital bed.
When he died his partner took his phone and typed
“(Name withheld) passed away today. He loved your lively political discussions. It provided him with comfort and entertainment during the final days of his life. Thank you.”
But let’s forget for a moment the fact that your hateful words could be the final straw for someone hanging by a thread on the opposite end of a fiber-optic cable.
Let me instead attempt to appeal to your pragmatic side.
When you disagree with someone, I assume your goal is to make them see your perspective (which in itself is an act of aggression. Ideally our goal would be to make the other person feel heard and understood, but let’s not ask for the moon here.)
So if your goal is to convince someone that you are right, calling them names and insulting their intelligence is undoubtedly the least likely way to achieve your desired result.
If you actually wanted someone to come around to your perspective you would actually take the opposite approach and try to make the person feel validated. When people feel validated, they tend to like you and when they like you they tend to care about what you have to say.
This can be done quickly and easily by asking a question that summarizes the statement that you disagree with, because when you ask a question it shows you are curious about the person’s point of view and when you are curious it means you care. Furthermore when you sum up the person’s angle inside of your question it proves that you have already been listening.
So maybe you say something like
“So you think Obama was worse than Trump on immigration, due to the fact that he deported more people?”
This is difficult to do.
It requires a suppression of ego.
Many people have a really fragile self-esteem and aren’t willing to entertain the idea that they might actually be wrong.
If our self-esteem is contingent on always being right then we are more likely to lash out at those who disagree with us and even block that person from having a voice. This leads to the creation of an echo-chamber, where only those who believe as we do are allowed to express their thoughts.
Creating an echo-chamber is a guaranteed way to limit our effectiveness, while simultaneously eroding our ability to process information rationally.
I am often struck with the awareness that in this world of fake news and alternative facts that otherwise rational actors have become indistinguishable from the religious people whom they often disparage.
I have known many people who have found god and then attempted to convince me that they were now in possession of some great piece of knowledge and if I didn’t read the things that they had read and come to the same conclusions that they did then I was somehow inferior to them.
This is literally the exact same process we see with people trying to force their political views on others.
“Oh you don’t agree? Well read this!!”
Then we read it and are left with more questions than answers and we are attacked for not coming to the same conclusions that the other came to.
We are accused of being willfully ignorant and then the character assassinations begin.
People engaged in heated political discussions are often indistinguishable from religious zealots.
It is no wonder that these exchanges rarely end well.
As Godwin’s Law has been temporarily suspended due to the advent of having an ACTUAL Nazi in the White House, I propose a new law.
We can call it …hmmmm… Sparks’ Law (to be renamed when someone comes up with a better moniker.)
Sparks’ Law states that whenever someone uses name-calling or character assassination (aka ad hominem attacks) during an argument that they have automatically lost the argument and all communication should cease until the time when those in violation of Sparks’ Law admit wrongdoing and can get back on track by summarizing the position of the person or persons that they were debating.
Person A: You’re being willfully ignorant.
Person B: I’m invoking Sparks’ Law. I’m not going to have this discussion if you are going to attack my motives.
Person A: So you’re going to be a little bitch and run away because you know that I’m right!?
Person B: Sparks’ Law has been invoked. I declare victory in this debate until which time you see fit to calm yourself and stick to the subject without insulting my person.
Three hours later:
Person A: Sorry, I was really upset earlier. Let’s try this again. So your position is that you feel Trump is being unfairly maligned on immigration and your basis for this is that Obama deported more people than Trump has at this point in his presidency?
Person B: Dammit. I thought I had won that one. Now you are going to force me to actually debate it? LOL. Yeah that’s pretty much my point. You disagree?
Person A: Well yeah, I do and here’s my basis for that…
I am bookmarking this article and I suggest you do the same.
The next time someone attacks you simply say
“I’m invoking Sparks’ Law.” and drop this link on them and you win.
You win your sanity and you win back the time you were about to waste arguing with someone who doesn’t respect you or the basic rules of debate.
It’s a great tool to let the other person know that you are more than willing to debate the issue with them, but before you do, they must agree to calm down and exercise reason and logic above childish name-calling.
I doubt you will actually use this amazing tool I’ve created for you.
Your probably too much of a stupid looser to even comprehend such a brilliant concept.