One thing I’ve always tried to steer clear of doing is talking up my own intelligence. I don’t believe that I’m any more or any less intelligent than the average person in my age group. However there are two things that I will say in my favour. One, I have a curious nature, and two, I’m always willing to give the other side a chance to have their say, rather than sticking to my beliefs, and dismissing their beliefs automatically. If I have a belief, but someone else comes along with the opposite belief, I’m willing to hear them out. If they provide arguments that can be backed up by objective, observable reality which counter my beliefs, I’m willing to reassess my own beliefs. Let me just make that quite clear again, I’m willing to reassess my own beliefs if the other side provides objective facts. Hysterical emotional rhetoric is irrelevant.
I also won’t necessarily say that everything that I say is 100% guaranteed to be correct. I’m only human, and I’m capable of making mistakes just like anyone else. The conclusions I’ve come to are simply my assessment of events after looking at both sides of the story, figuring out what the facts are as best as I can, and giving my opinions in line with the observable truth as I interpret it.
I have emotional biases as much as anyone else and these emotional biases influence the topics that I cover. This is why I don’t cover stories that involve genuine cases of racism (against minorities), homophobia, sexism etc. It’s not that I don’t care about these issues. As a decent human being (or at least I’d like to think I am) of course I care about all genuine cases of injustice. It’s just that these issues are covered so much already in the mainstream, that I really have nothing new to add to those discussions. However, unfair discrimination against white people, fake cases of racism against minorities, the ridiculous situation in Sweden, or the current agenda of putting the demands of trans people over the will of the majority don’t get much attention, or if they do, there is a heavy bias in favour of the side that makes no sense to me. Hence, these are the topics that I choose to discuss in the hopes of bringing more attention to them, and getting people to think more abstractly outside of the mainstream narrative.
Unfortunately, the more I look at the world, the more alone I feel by having this way of thinking. Even looking at my Facebook timeline, it is hotbed of politically correct circle-jerking, with a hivemind of acceptable points of view. Certain stories go viral, and everyone expresses the exact same opinion on them. Anyone who goes against the hivemind will find themselves being attacked by a bunch of lunatics who based on the rage they express, I can actually imagine them with their eyes bulging, red faced, foaming at the mouth, in front of their computer screens.
I essentially feel as if I live in a world where to a lot of people, the actual facts don’t matter. The stories might be heavily biased in favour of one point of view, but that doesn’t matter to them because it fits their preconceived politically correct ideology. For example, all those blacks being killed by white cops in America. The stories tell us that they’re innocent people who were murdered in cold blood by racist cops. Seeing these stories, a circle-jerk of “oh those poor innocent victims of evil racist white people” like comments springs up. More and more people get involved in the “discussion” making the same comments, and they all start liking each others comments. Someone who looks into the actual facts behind the stories (statistics on crime or deaths by race, autopsy reports for the victims etc.) might come along and bring this new information to the discussion. Instead of looking at the newly provided information, and reassessing the story, people will often just dismiss it and become more stubborn in their beliefs. This is because these people don’t care about facts. They only care about feelings, or with agreeing with whatever the majority, or the authority figure is saying (the mainstream media is perceived like an authority figure).
When I look at how these people will deny observable facts to suit their preconceived beliefs, it fills me with despair because I worry about how far they’ll take it. Just today, I saw someone on my friends list basically speak out in favour of thought crime legislation because (s)he doesn’t like the no side of the marriage campaign expressing their views. Now as I’ve made quite clear, I was a yes voter myself, but the idea of censoring the no side for their views seems completely ridiculous to me, because of the Pandora’s box it opens up. It’s all well and good to say that you want to punish speech that you find distasteful, but who exactly is given the power to decide what speech is allowed, and how do you know that they’ll only stop at the speech you disagree with? What’s to stop them from finding views that you’re in favour of, deciding that they personally find them distasteful, and punishing you the same way you would punish people on the no side?
Yet I know that if I was to point this out to this person, not only would they not see things that way, they’d more than likely snap and act as if I haven’t got a clue what I’m talking about. I know this because of how smug the person was about how much more intelligent and enlightened they were than the no voters. I don’t disagree that the yes side has the correct point of view, but when you have the correct point of view, surely you’re capable of defending it through logic, reason, and well founded arguments, rather than through tyranny and oppression against the other side, right?
No matter how much I disagree with the no voters, or other groups whose views differ from my own, I will defend their right to express their views. Censoring them is the act of a coward, or someone who simply is incapable of defending their point of view. Oh and just to make things clear, I’m not saying they shouldn’t experience any consequences for expressing their beliefs. If you think they’re a fucking idiot or a nasty person for saying things like this, then by all means, tell them exactly what you think of them. Just as I feel they should have the right to express their views, no matter how controversial, you in turn should have the same rights to express your opinions on them. I’m simply saying that using legal punishments (fines, imprisonment etc.) should not be an option unless they actually discriminate against others in some way (for example, refusing to serve them at work).
It’s just a shame to know that some people will never be reached. They’d rather live in an Orwellian nightmare than be exposed to dissenting views. I worry that people like this are becoming the majority. I really hope that enough others can be reached to offset the damage they could do.