Skinner: Whose opinion is most valid?

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Here in America everyone is entitled to their own opinion and can speak it out loud. Sometimes expressing your opinion in public exposes your blind rage to the public. To quote Taylor Swift, “You gotta keep calm!”

I’m here, getting paid to give my opinion, but I have to say that sometimes speaking my mind isn’t worth it. Our community is small and no one wants to be banished forever because maybe someone expresses an opinion they really don’t like.

We are too quick to judge each other. Politics. Countries. boundaries. Gardens. Children. Scientists. rock me. Movies. to drive. fly away. to eat. Religion. Refugees.

You have to balance your quick and righteous judgment with some padding so that we’re not always at each other’s throats. As we have now.

Communication is a poison that poisons more cavities on social media. Even good moves inspire vitriol.

I put some snow tires for sale online and got a robotic response that said “I hate your business interests”. Are you sure? After that, “What are your business needs?” Who said business? And who programs this nonsense?

Still, it’s real people commenting on real topics who shoot the sharpest barbs. Look at the response to anyone who expresses a very strong and correct position on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Kick them out! Quit! Lost forever!

In my view, some of this public anger is arrogant, lofty, inflexible and hardened. Armchair knowledge is tedious at best and often laughable at worst. To lose land is to lose sight of the world.

Ohio State University offers “tips for communicating controversial issues” on its website. It’s about getting your thoughts across without making enemies (like I probably did). When covering topics, it is best to be seen as credible, unbiased, well-informed, and speaking from experience and research. If research and experience form an opinion, say so.

My favorite part of the article is that it talks about assault issues, not people.

“Present your data or views and stick to the issue. Don’t belittle those with differing views. Personal attacks can make people question your intentions and objectivity.”

This is challenging, especially when people with other opinions are criticized and thought to be naive, which is often the case, yes?

The best part of all of this: The tough, peace-making, uneducated and smart people among us are all thanks to the First Amendment and the Aspen Daily News. I always appreciate informed and civil discussion. I’ve got an informed discussion on these pages with some real ding-dong stuff.

It’s often a scary sight for people who take themselves too seriously, and a real warning sign that someone is ready to flip the lid – if you haven’t already.

as if thoughtfulleader.com In a blog post, Ben Briley wrote, “If you expect respect without taking the time to earn it, you may be taking yourself too seriously. He added, “When we think of ourselves as leaders, we set ourselves up for failure. We build ourselves up or try to hide our flaws, believing that we are more important than we really are. This is when we are most vulnerable if something goes wrong.

“On the other hand, things become a little easier when we can safely lead with humility, with grace, with a sense of humor, knowing that we’re human like everyone else.”

Oh, and here’s the mirror.

That resonates with me. I have several comments. That’s why I’m writing this column. I have to hold it in check. My mother was a power judge, one could judge a person just by a look or hearing a name. Good judgment is one thing, but sometimes it is useful to leave stupid, hateful, one-sided, uneducated and excessive opinions locked away in our minds.



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