Discourse


Someone commented that people thought she was "opinionated" (a bad thing) if she stated an opinon. I responded:

I see this as part of the "psychologizing" of the culture. In the U.S., it used to be accepted as part of the democractic process -- a necessary part of that process -- for people to have and to discuss a variety of opinions/perspectives on any given topic. But now, psychology has replaced civil/political culture to such an extent that the primary objective is "do not hurt anybody's feelings." And if you express an opinion, you are seen as "putting down" (and thereby hurting the feelings of) anybody who does not agree with you.

The assumption seems to be that people are so fragile (in psychic terms) that they will be damaged by having their feelings hurt -- and that their feelings will be hurt by contact with anything that does not "validate" them in every way.

I find the whole attitude annoying. It's undemocratic, it erodes the basis for democratic civil society, it inhibits free speech, and it makes life more bland than it ought to be. Plus, it makes most NT people who still retain their own opinions add on a lot more NT-type verbal and non- verbal expressive trimming to their conversations because they know they have to go out of their way to try to avoid "offending" people. My preference is for unadorned, to-the- point speech (i.e., speech I have some hope of understanding), which currently is very far out of fashion.



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