What has happened to today’s society? We seem to be separated into two groups of thought, those who believe they are right and those who intellectually look at the issues and form opinions based upon facts and evidence. Truth has become a rare commodity.
Those who believe they are right cling to this notion with a religious zeal. They know they are right and nobody can tell them anything to the contrary. Facts and evidence are “liberal ideals” which are ignored to prove their righteousness. Anyone who believes anything different from them are “living in a fantasy” or are “misinformed”.
Those who form their opinions upon facts and evidence are not quite as quick to assert they are right. They keep an open mind and their opinions are not set in stone. When proven wrong through logic or reason, they alter their viewpoint. They are not righteous, but are open to civil discourse in their discussions.
But why are those who believe they are right know they are right? Is it because they are surrounding themselves with people who believe the same thing? Are they only listening to messengers whom they agree with? And why the devotion to being right? Is this a result of immediate gratification? Does money equate into being right, the more material objects they own mean they are more right than anyone else?
Those who believe they are right ignore historical facts, scientific facts, and evidence, nor can they substantiate their beliefs with reason or evidence. Yet they cling to their positions without just cause. Many claim that all Muslims are evil, that President Obama is a socialist, or that only Capitalism benefits society. Many believe that the recession and TARP bailouts were enacted by President Obama, that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction since they haven’t been found yet, or that only tax cuts for the rich create jobs. Facts, evidence, or reason are not required to make these assertions, yet these are the beliefs they cling to.
Facts and evidence show us that many of their assertions are incorrect. The recession began under the Bush Presidency, the TARP bailout was signed into law by President Bush, Saddam Hussein admitted that he did not have weapons of mass destruction after Desert Storm (but how could he publicly acknowledge that under Iran’s threat of invasion?), and tax cuts for the rich do not create jobs (or at least not permanent jobs). Yet those who form their opinions on facts and evidence are shunned. They are called liberal thinkers or sometimes socialists, but are always condemned for going against popular beliefs of the self-righteous.
Remarkably, the stance against intellectuals are propagandist beliefs at best, and ignorance of truth at least. The righteous take opinions as facts, view compromise as turning the other to their way of thinking only, and refuse to engage in honest discussion to uncover truth. They claim that we, as Americans, must be united, yet they are the ones dividing the country with their “with us or against us” mentality. They claim that we must take our country back, but they fail to realize that no one took their country away from them. How can we have a civil discussion over today’s issues, or vote for elected officials among those with such righteous views? How can we unite as a society with such an extreme of a belief? What has happened to today’s society?