This is a difficult time for us as a nation. We're more divided now than we've been in decades. Horrible, devastating things are happening both outside and inside our walls daily, and yet whenever I make the (usually stupid) decision to look on the great, vast internet to find out more about what's happening, I get more depressed by the comments than the actual news. I'm sorry, but what? Why? Why on earth should I be angrier and more defensive by looking at the comment section of a news article than the actual article itself? Without fail, every time I go and read these comments, I find at least one internet troll in every thread, and usually these trolls aren't even trying to be trolls: they're just genuinely angry and wicked people who take their own misfortunes out on other people. And then without fail, I always see someone who refutes the troll's words, and then says "but I respect your opinion."
And you know what?
I'm sick of that.
I am so tired of people either backing down from an argument by saying "I respect your opinion," or, vice versa, spewing horrible, mean-hearted words about someone and then following it by saying "but that's just my opinion."
No. You're wrong. It's not "just your opinion." It's your free pass to say whatever you want to say about someone and not get completely obliterated for it.
This has got to stop. As bold as this is, I'm putting my foot down and saying it: I don't respect your opinion. I don't respect your opinion that my race, religion, gender, social class, nationality, etc. is either sub-par or "bad" because you've somehow come up with the notion from biased sources that it is. I can't help what I was born into and taught any more than you can.
But you know what I can help?
Actually going out and learning about other races, religions, nationalities, and cultures instead of trying to close myself off from them. Actually getting my news from a reliable, unbiased source and forming my opinions based on that. It is better to follow what my heart is telling me to say and who to reach out to, rather than my emotions.
The Golden Rule has apparently bypassed much of society today, and that truly saddens me. To see the way people get treated online and things people have said directly to other people online with no basis or facts to justify them is honestly heartbreaking. How is this world ever going to change or improve if we keep pointing fingers?
Newsflash: we're humans. We all suck. We're all sinners. But this constant chaos has to stop, and we can help stop it by knowing this: there is a difference in having an informed opinion, and being cruel and hateful towards others because you're bitter. The sooner we as a society can grasp this concept and quit using the "it's just my opinion" cover, the better off we all will be.