Having an opinion is human nature. It is ingrained in our brains and we are entitled to it, in a way. As long as we agree to disagree, having an opinion of your own is a good thing, right?
Well, for most of the part, it’s true. Opinions are usually born out of knowledge, and it drives debates. It also makes the brain tick and think and acquire more information. It doesn’t mean that all opinions are correct, either. We must keep in mind that opinions can be wrong, and that is why the ‘agree - to - disagree’ part is important.
How many times have you heard someone say something rude, following it up with “It’s just my opinion, you don’t have to over-react!” or “It’s my opinion, and I think it’s right! You are absolutely wrong!”
Thing is, that’s not an opinion.
An opinion needs to be conveyed in such a way that it is not wholly offensive, and allows people to react, add to, or even change it. Basically, opinions must be flexible and willing to be changed. Straight out cursing the other party for a different thought process is just wrong! Besides, when will we learn if we do not listen?
Sad thing is, in today’s age of twitter and instagram, opinions are twisted to satisfaction and are downright crude and offensive. Seems like social media isn’t so keen on censorship too, which only makes matters worse.
Cyber-bullying a particular race or ethnicity in the form of such ‘opinions’ is very much a serious issue. Let’s take the example of Asians - Indians in particular. Stereotypes and Western Standards are rampant under Indian influencers’ posts, in the guise of 'opinions'. While some manage to move on without a hoot, there are others on whom it leaves a lasting impact on.
But what can we do?
In my opinion, if I may, the easiest key is to be respectful. You don’t have to be rude if you disagree with someone. Besides, politeness puts your message across and also gains respect from the other party. You will be viewed as a person with dignity and character. And it doesn’t mean you have to keep quiet when faced with disrespect.
The world is huge, filled with diverse mindsets and people. Clashes are inevitable, but it is upon us to act as humans do: with firm gentleness. Afterall, you are entitled to your opinion as long as it doesn’t disrespect someone else. When we debate, only then can we learn!