An Ode to Critical Thinking
A POSTFACTUAL WORLD?
Lately it has been mentioned that we’ve been living in a post-factual world. I’ve had discussions with people who have said “I’ll read my side and believe what I believe, and you will read your side and believe what you believe.” This statement has nothing to do with the truth. If we don’t find out what is really true, and if we don’t make decsions based upon real facts, we are in a lot of trouble. You can be conservative or liberal, or somewhere in between. Both sides have truth, and in most cases the two groups could probably meet in the middle. But we have to know what is true and what is not. Below is an episode of Open Mind that I watched. This person is from Politifact. They are not right-leaning, they are not left-leaning, because if we choose our truth based upon those criteria, we are already asking for skewed information. The truth is just the truth.
See the Episode by clicking here:
AN ODE TO CRITICAL THINKING
Everyone has an opinion. If you have an opinion about what everyone else should or shouldn’t be doing, then you are not unique. Opinions don’t make us unique. Do you want to be like everyone else, or do you want to stand out as something different – a beacon of change? Here is what will make you different: having compassion. People may feel as though they are standing on principle when they offer their opinions on Facebook or wherever, that put other people down. But what principle??? Think about what you are standing for when you post your opinions. Do you really know and understand the issue you are posting about? Have you actually walked in the shoes of the person you are judging with your opinion? Do you understand why the issues you are posting about exist? Do you know both sides of the issue?
Your opinions are not factual unless you have researched all sides of an issue. Your belief in them does does not make them true. A good debater understands his opponent’s point of view. A good debater and a wise person puts thought behind ideas. A thoughtful person weighs all of the facts and offers up helpful and realistic solutions to a proposed problem. It seems that most people these days aren’t interested in facts. They have their opinions, which are based on anger. They shout their opinions and criticisms loudly on Facebook, even though they aren’t true. People don’t care about the truth any more, they only seem to care about their personal rage.
When you post a criticism without a proposed solution, you are only promoting hatred and turmoil, and don’t we have enough of that already? Opinions are like buttholes, we all have one. Compassion, on the other hand, seems to have gone the way of unicorns – everyone looks for them but sightings are so very rare. Please, be a unicorn. Be unique. Be compassionate. Use wisdom.