As Americans, we are all entitled to our opinions. We have a right to say what we want, but we also have the responsibility to accept the rebuttal of those opinions. Yet, as part of the process, we should take a moment to acknowledge that not everyone shares the same opinions. We should be open to learning. If we do this, we might – well – learn something.
The Case of Rolling Stone and the Guest Commenter
I read comments earlier today on an article that appeared on Rollingstone.com regarding the recent police incident in Texas. I noticed the polarization of sides and chose to comment. After all, is that not my right to do so? I wanted to share my opinion but, at the same time, offer a bit of hope that people can change.
This was my comment:
What is sad in reading these comments is the fact that so many people seem to take this case and make villains out of one or the other groups. Was the cop wrong – 100% absolutely wrong. That is my opinion and, just like everyone else, I am entitled to it. Is there more to the story than just what was seen in the video – quite possibly. Does that make the kids who were there holders of every negative stereotype imparted onto a people by those who fear anything that might be different from them? It does not. Does that mean every police officer who is bad the image of every cop who isn’t? It does not. What I would like to hope is that PEOPLE would treat PEOPLE with equality and respect – regardless of race, age, sex, national origin, etc.
While I am sure my comment may receive a negative response from the voices who believe that “they got what was coming to them” or some such, it is my opinion. Maybe if we spent, as a human population, a bit less time trying to tear down another people and spent that energy searching for what makes us the same – perhaps – just perhaps – we might all be better for it.
Reply? Certainly, Be My Guest
I said I was sure that I would get a negative response. I actually hoped I would not, but – guess what – I did. The person, anonymously responding as guest, replied:
Nothing you say is based on facts, that is the problem. They weren’t afraid of the kids, because they were black. They were breaking the law, not listening to the cops and attacking the people who live there. Even the blacks who lived there have said this. Were you there? Do you know what the cop felt and that he was 100 percent wrong? I know you think you are insightful and Buddha, but you makes no sense and contradict. Maybe if people respected authority and their elders, plus learned the laws of the land, maybe everything would be great?
The Rebuttal Comment
I read other comments made by guest (see images). My response to him/her:
Guest – #1 – I said this was an OPINION – so, an opinion does not have to be based on fact. I respect your right to an opinion; however, if you say that I make no sense and contradict, you miss my point. I don’t think I am insightful – I only gave an opinion – my own. YOU are entitled to YOURS. I am entitled to MINE. I respect that you disagree with me and, just the same, I respectfully disagree with you.
I’ve read your other responses and, while you are entitled to your opinions, I could not help but notice how many times phrases such as “moron” and “idiotic” were used. Two opposing opinions might find common ground if one side didn’t choose to use words that demean the other in such a fashion. Doing so seems to hold one purpose – an agenda to attack and belittle anything one finds “less” or “different” than the opinions one might hold.
What Comes to Mind
I respect guest for having an opinion different from my own. I disagree with it, but I respect it nonetheless. However, when reading it, a few things came to mind:
- It is easy for people to use social media to hide behind anonymity and give opinions.
- Sometimes people argue points for the purpose of argument.
- The comments evolved beyond liberal or conservative, right or wrong, or anything else.
- Some just put words up in the cloud simply to incite others.
Let me be clear on the following:
- I am not perfect in my opinion.
- Based on the knowledge of the McKinney, Texas incident swimming pool incident, I believe that Officer Eric Casebolt was in the wrong. He acted inappropriately and that is backed up by a statement from the Chief of Police. I believe, as said by the Chief, that Casebolt’s actions were indefensible.
- If anyone should wish to use social media to comment, do so without hiding behind a generic guest title. I would respect your opinions more if your identity was not hidden.
- We, as a people, obviously have a long way to go.
To read the Rolling Stone article, click here.
To read the Disqus comment thread, click here.