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How To Combat Political Outrage And How To Disarm Hostile Attackers

ThatFelixGuyThatFelixGuy Always Look Up. Optimism > PesimismPosts: 242 Trailblazer
edited October 2020 in Politics & Debate
This is something I wanted to type up for a while, but politics is super scary and can lead to one of three things

A) A hostile mindset comes into your space and tries to make you the bad guy for not agreeing
B ) You are chastised for not researching enough into issues, and the topic your approaching is rapidly derailed.
C) You actually meet people with an open mind, wanting a discussion.

That third one is super rare, because the vast, hostile climate of politics is one that is pushed tot he front by many different parties. And ultimately, one day you will have to vote - be it a youngster in waiting, or someone just sitting by waiting for the next General Election, you will have to get up and walk to a polling booth at least once in your life.

So I am writing this guide on how to avoid situations A and B, and hopefully you can disarm hostile attackers who want to shoot down your views - remember, spreading information is something in everybody's interest. Outrage and hatred are not.

Disclaimer: I am not pushing for a political agenda here, I personally do not care what policies you agree with, nor do I care what sort of world you want to live in. This guide is essentially to protect yourselves if you ever decide to go political online.

It is fairly simple to get your point across sharply, and precisely without insulting or hurting anyone;

  1. Present your point. Example; 'Children Should Have Free School Meals'.
  2. Research, and provide evidence on that topic.
  3. Let the other party take the ball
  4. Reply, provide another point to back up.
It is that simple! I will provide an example here!

Me: I think children should have free school meals! I was raised in a council estate house like many children, with parents who were too sick to go to work. My breakfast on a morning was really important to me, and honestly having those meals at school was an important part in my day to day life.
Other Person: The economy is shrinking! We need to reallocate this money to supermarkets and local businesses so we can ALL reap the award, not just some kids from parents who can't work!
Me: Well have you checked the percentage of kids from poor backgrounds going with food at school? X% of children go without, do you really think it is unfair on them to eat nothing whilst these local businesses have grants given to them?
Other Person: The grants are not enough! We should be campaigning for a stronger economy, not partaking in these ludicrous ideas by the opposistion! Do you want our country to fall?
Me: Well, in that case, how about giving pay rises to nurses and teachers during the pandemic?
Other Person: Are you a communist?
Me: *provides in detail more accurate stats and guidance*

Eventually, this conversation will continue until you get to one of three outcomes;
  • Outcome A - the other person will walk away, they can't see your points, and it is obvious they are not coming out too well.
  • Outcome B - they wash you in insults and petty remarks to goad a reaction. Do not give them a reaction, block and walk away. This is now troll territory.
  • Outcome C - you may get a logical response, and possibly an apology from someone who wants to listen to your views. This is what we want to aim for, because having people more aware of issues, may make them friendlier and more relaxed when coming to the table about political issues.
Very rarely (but frightingly more numerous in recent years) you will get called a 'racist' 'fascist' or other names close to your political lean point. This is mainly to goad a reaction and so they can have the upper hand. It is vital you use critical thinking here.

Critical Thinking - looking at a situation and judging all possible outcomes, and not the most obvious one.

I am going to give an example here.

Situation: You go for an interview at a mostly black working company. For the sake of this situation, you are white.

Non-Critical Thinkers: The company is racist.

Critical Thinkers: You may not have had enough experience, your Social media profile was against what the company stood for, you may have had something that goes against what they stand for, or you completely failed at the interview.

So let's translate that to a political situation;

Situation: You support Boris Johnson because he is a strong leader, and completely ignoring the past choices he has done in parliament.

Non-Critical Thinkers: You are supporting Johnson because he spread lies and slander and covered up his campaign trial. Because you support such a heinous man, you are a racist, sexist, bigot.

Critical Thinkers: There may have been candidates other then Johnson that were appealing, but ultimately he was the only one that aligned to your interests that could have got into power. You may also like a particular policy in his manifesto, or the fact he is sticking with Brexit.

Now you can use critical thinking to your advantage during political arguments. This guide is getting a tad too long, so no example here, but you can use this cycle to open up a conversation leading to the three outcomes I said above.

  1. Present the outcome
  2. Give a logical reason to your choice
  3. Reverse that logical reason the other person gives you
  4. Repeat with a new reason
This avoids the tirade and back and forth of using insults to goad reactions and people thinking they have the upper hand.

I am tired of people saying they have an opinion they think should not be heard. Everybody should have that opinion. And they should be able to explain why without being attacked. But remember, it is important to hear other peoples choices too...they may open up your mind <3

Felix
"Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves." - Bruce Lee
AidantkdogMikeAnch0r33

Comments

  • AidanAidan Clever idiot Posts: 2,830 Boards Guru
    This is great- discussion about politics is so important, but it can also be so exhausting and fruitless!
    "Do, or do not, there is no try" <(•.•)>              
    ThatFelixGuy
  • ThatFelixGuyThatFelixGuy Always Look Up. Optimism > PesimismPosts: 242 Trailblazer
    @Aidan that's why I made this guide! 

    I consider myself in the middle of the political spectrum. Some on both sides have called me all-sorts for not committing to one party.

    It is time we all started to be a bit more open.
    "Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves." - Bruce Lee
  • SkiveSkive No discipline. No morality. No respect. New ForestPosts: 15,169 Skive's The Limit
    I just call anybody that disagrees with me a cunt. :)
    Yesterday is history
    Tomorrow is a mystery
    But today is a gift
    That’s why it’s call the present
    ThatFelixGuyGreenTea
  • ThatFelixGuyThatFelixGuy Always Look Up. Optimism > PesimismPosts: 242 Trailblazer
    @Skive your kinda proving my point here.

    That is counter productive to a conversation. How do you expect people to listen your point when your lobbing insults?
    "Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves." - Bruce Lee
    Skive
  • ThatFelixGuyThatFelixGuy Always Look Up. Optimism > PesimismPosts: 242 Trailblazer
    I forgot to include this yesterday, but the enitre point of this article is to promote civil discourse, and not aggression. Throwing names about and insults promote the later, which is not what we need. 

    Politics is super important in this age, and we ALL need to do better and be better with other opinions - be it you believe in 'cancel culture' or if you want to open your mind up. 

    Be civil, not hostile.
    "Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves." - Bruce Lee
  • AidanAidan Clever idiot Posts: 2,830 Boards Guru
    @ThatFelixGuy you seem like you know a lot about engaging in political conversation :grin: I was wondering how would you suggest someone try to disengage from a political conversation they don't want to be in, on social media or in real life?- because politics gets talked about a lot and understandably a lot of people don't want to hear about it!
    "Do, or do not, there is no try" <(•.•)>              
    ThatFelixGuy
  • ThatFelixGuyThatFelixGuy Always Look Up. Optimism > PesimismPosts: 242 Trailblazer
    Aidan said:
    @ThatFelixGuy you seem like you know a lot about engaging in political conversation :grin: I was wondering how would you suggest someone try to disengage from a political conversation they don't want to be in, on social media or in real life?- because politics gets talked about a lot and understandably a lot of people don't want to hear about it!
    Well, that is tricky. A hostile situation can be easily forbid by walking away/blocking but if it is something you would like to pick later, you can go "I respect your choice, however I need to think on my response to this." 

    The last thing you want to do is, again, belittle them by lobbing insults. There is little benifit from doing so, other then making yourself look stupid in a situation where you can potentially have a new friend.
    "Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves." - Bruce Lee
    Aidan
  • SkiveSkive No discipline. No morality. No respect. New ForestPosts: 15,169 Skive's The Limit
    @Skive your kinda proving my point here.

    That is counter productive to a conversation. How do you expect people to listen your point when your lobbing insults?

    It may not have been obviouse but I wasn't being entirely serious. 

    I agree of course that insults, slurs and agressive behaviour are not conducive to intelligent discussion - when was the last time you won someone round to your way of thinking by insulting them or callng them stupid.

    Profanity however still has it's place in discussion. It's a commonly said that if you have to resort to swearing you've lost the argument, but I'm afraid that's simply bollocks. :) Profantiy has no effect on the validitiy of an argument. Profanity is a useful tool for communicating emphisis and emotion.

    And I would never rule out the use of slurs, insults and agressive speech altogether, but I generally save it for people spouting dangerous and hateful rhetoric - the sort of people I'd consider thumping in real life. 




    Yesterday is history
    Tomorrow is a mystery
    But today is a gift
    That’s why it’s call the present
    ThatFelixGuy
  • Anch0r33Anch0r33 Posts: 847 Part of The Mix Family
    I actually attended a lecture at my uni (which is well regarded and prestigious) about why some words are considered swearing and others aren't. 

    Often it's the sounds and impact the sounds make in a conversation that make some words a swear. Some words just sound worse than others. 

    But swearing doesn't mean it's offensive - you stub your toe, what do some people say? F u c k. 

    Sometimes swears are just a way to add emphasis to a sentence or a point. 

    Other times they are ways to offend another person. Which in some ways can work and other ways is wrong. If you want to offend the person just so they reflect and look at their argument and look at themselves in the mirror, that's a lot better than offending them to hurt them - which isn't okay and that's when you've lost the argument. 

    Ultimately it's how you use them and when you use them that makes a conversation intelligent. 

    But most people take swears as an insult so it doesn't really work anyway. 

    Interesting lecture anyhow 
    👁️👄👁️
    ThatFelixGuy
  • SkiveSkive No discipline. No morality. No respect. New ForestPosts: 15,169 Skive's The Limit
    I don't like the idea that discussion can be controlled by people claiming they're offended.

    Offense is largely subjective. To have freedom of speech and discuss ideas, you have to risk offending somebody. Being offended is not an argument.
    Yesterday is history
    Tomorrow is a mystery
    But today is a gift
    That’s why it’s call the present
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