Sunday, October 01, 2006

...and no one will ever convince me otherwise.

I took debate in high school and I enjoy studying logic and critical thinking. I make it a point that when I discuss politics or any other controversial topic to be very logical in my arguments and to recognize when the other side makes logical arguments.
I try to stay open minded with all of my beliefs. As I have matured many if not most of my opinions have evolved quite a bit.
All to frequently, especially in political dialogue, I hear people say, "...and no one will ever convince me otherwise." When ever I hear this statement I know I am talking to a scared and closed minded person. An open minded person readily accepts all attempts by others to be proven wrong. Whoever would say this is essentially saying, "This is how I believe. I expect you to change you beliefs to follow suit, and don't insult me by even asking me to consider other possibilities."
What disturbs me most about this attitude is how pervasive it is. Many people who refer to themselves as Christians us this quote when discussing evolution. I'm sure Galileo and Copernicus were told similar things for defending their beliefs. These historical examples illustrate how dangerous this belief can be.
I hope that I never get this closed-minded. Even in the opinions that I hold strongest I'd like to at least be able to say, "I'm rather set in my ways on this however I invite you to try to prove me wrong."


  1. OH, no,, you couldn't have that! the free sharing of Ideas??? Especially not if it will change my routine. If I found out that MY religous, political or social viewsor actions were in error, I would be motivated to actually DO SOMETHING about it. If I convince you to believe or act MY way then YOU have some action to take. Lets not even go where THAT whole senario would take us. A group of simmilarly minded folks united together in action towards a common goal; that is WHAT would happen if folks actually LISTENED to each other and embraced the changes for the better. But who wants THAT type of society anyway??? I like the one we have just the way it is so,,, pppppthththththth! :P

  2. In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time someting like that happened in politics or religion.
    --Carl Sagan

  3. Correct. Most people are too busy playing my-god-can-beat-up-your-god to actually look at their views objectively.