In My Opinion...
March 17, 2016
What does freedom mean to us as a society, as a country, as a nation? If you’ve been reading CYI for years you probably surmised I skirt political and religious arenas. The reason is simple. I respect the fact that not everyone shares my beliefs on these subjects. However, one truth we should all agree on is America has always prided itself on being the “home of the free.” Until someone says something which fuels those of a different opinion…we’ll call them protestors… who then group together shouting very loudly “YOU CAN’T SAY THAT!” Why not?
Even the First Amendment, written over 200 years ago, was founded on respect spawned by the understanding, we the people, value different ideals and opinions from one another. Thus, our forefathers realized the significance of protecting an individual’s right to speak freely, exercise their religion, assemble peacefully and even gave freedom to the press; all to ensure a fair and equitable democracy. Although, it’s obvious by the news reports of late that courteous regard for each other has been replaced by narcissistic bad manners. What an appalling shame we are losing our ability to respect the viewpoint of others while maintaining our own views and simply agree to disagree, respectfully. Instead, some of us much prefer to beat our chest and romp around like a gorilla boldly convincing ourselves, while trying to convince others, our viewpoint is the only one that matters.
Just for the sake of argument, imagine if humans had always agreed on absolutely everything. I’ll go out on a limb and say our species, conceivably, would have died of boredom centuries ago. Dickens, it bores me to fathom the thought of thinking like everyone else because it’s our uniqueness that keep us thriving, learning and growing as a society. Easy to grasp how rapidly society would stagnate like muck on the bottom of a pond if no one was stirring the waters of freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom to simply be our self.
Because it’s those individuals who are not afraid to be themselves in the face of adversity, while ignoring others trying to pigeon hole them into… what? ...into their way of thinking?, that the rest of us should thank for keeping the muck from settling. Fortunately, we are not clones of each other and don’t need to agree to agree. We are all wonderful and amazing individuals with the ability to think freely. Hence the phrase “difference of opinion,” since striving to be different creates change, which fosters new concepts, new technology and new flavors of ice cream. Hey, whatever works, right?
My point is we should embrace the freedom to think, feel and act differently from each other. It’s this fruitful fountain of unusual concepts, diverse opinions and innovative inspirations that keeps humankind in forward motion. Rather than turning us into mindless drones following each other around, doing what each other does, repeating what each other says, blah, blah, blah. Yawn…bored yet?
Therefore, I’m stepping up on my soapbox about the issue of freedom of speech because it sorrows and unsettles me to witness so many people thrash each other so hatefully merely because of a difference of opinion. Friends, it really is okay to disagree. Therefore, next time you find yourself on the opposing side of an opinion simply have respect for their viewpoint. They have as much right to theirs as you do yours.
Remember: Diversity is the road society must travel to preserve a unified goal: freedom.
Can you imagine… more new flavors of ice cream?
Smile, in my opinion you look amazing!!!!