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February 24, 2020 / Congau

The Right Not to Have an Opinion

Everyone has the right to have an opinion. That’s why we let them talk incessantly while we pretend to be listening. As soon as they have finished it’s our turn to get going on our favorite subject making sure we don’t disagree with the previous speaker by not touching on anything he said. In that way we secure harmony by skillfully talking past each other and avoid confrontation by never meeting.

Everyone has the right to have an opinion. We have learned about free speech, so we let them speak. We are so tolerant that we don’t care what they say anyway. And what is more, they don’t care either. They are all too happy to listen to their own voice, so they grab the chance to talk about anything they have never thought about before. Why should we tolerate them?

Everyone has the right to have an opinion, I agree, provided they have an opinion. I would listen to any well thought out point of view, but the freedom of speech doesn’t obligate me to listen to noise.

Am I being arrogant? Well, I really don’t want to accuse anyone of talking nonsense and I rather hope they would realize that themselves. The problem is that we invite the nonsense by not only allowing everyone to speak but encouraging them to do so whether they have anything to say or not. In the name of democracy innocent citizens are seen on television being cornered by reporters and getting a microphone thrust into their month. They seem happy to be asked as if they had just been given respect and importance. But we don’t respect people by making them express an opinion they don’t have, any more than it would be respectful to make them act as chimpanzees in a zoo.

Everyone has the right NOT to have an opinion.

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