Chatter #238 Pass the Judgment, Please.

“Well, that’s just your opinion.”

In the modern equivalent of reasoned debate, disagreement is, in the final analysis, reduced to nothing more than opposing personal opinion. As a whole, people reject objective truth because that kind of truth challenges deeply-held and treasured personal assumptions about how the universe works. The only truth which some people admit to is “my truth.”

If we allow that “everybody has an opinion,” and we have the right to freedom of speech, why are we so ready to routinely deny others the right to their opinion…a right which we hold dear for themselves.

Before thinking, “not me,” think again. Every person who shouts, “Don’t judge me!” is guilty. Judgment is the process of forming an opinion by discerning and comparing, or opinion so formed. Go ahead and Google it.

Yep, even those folks who wear a black robe and swing a mean gavel produce nothing more than opinion. The Justices of the Supreme Court decide cases by issuing their opinion. Judgment is a decision. Granted the Justices’ opinions carry more weight and consequences than mine…but it is after all just their opinion.

Everybody who has ever been offended by anything is a judger. That is, they see or hear something, discern how they think about it, and compare it some standard (usually a personal one) of right and wrong. Then, they issue an opinion. “I’m offended.” The unspoken corollary is…“by your opinion.”

We all make countless judgment every single day. Deciding whether to have coffee when we get up is a decision. For me, it’s not a decision that requires conscious thought, but it is a decision nonetheless. That rare breed that is anti-coffee may find my decision offensive and disgusting. However, I feel no need to shout “Don’t judge me, bro.” Why? Because I’m going to go right on sipping contentedly.

I think what people need to say rather than “don’t judge me,” is “keep your opinion to yourself.” This is not only more accurate, but it is also more honest. Every person has a right to judge everything. What we do not have, except in legal situations, is a right to condemn others for forming opinions (judgments) of their own, bashing them for speaking their mind, or consigning them to hell for doing so.

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