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  • Mathew Morrell
    Sep 24, 2004
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      When we were children we always heard, around the Thanksgiving table
      or on Sunday after church, the adults vehemently express their ideas
      and opinions about the world, but we never really became upset by
      these opinions no matter how strange, alien or discomforting they
      seemed to be at the time; we were never offended even if these ideas
      were contrary to what our parents believed. We simple listened with
      charmed amusement as the "grown ups" argued back and forth, swatting
      mental forms around the table like harmless Ping Pong balls.
      Occasionally the Ping Pong Balls became canon balls, and feeling were
      hurt. My grandfather held views that different from my own view--we
      used to spar with each over politics--but I never took these sparring
      matches personally.

      I think, maybe, children have a more profound insight into the nature
      of ideas and opinions than adults. A child knows that our opinions
      are meaningless compared to who we are as individuals. After all you
      can talk all you want about opinions or what you believe but it's
      what's inside that counts to a child. For example, you can tell the
      whole world how much you love America but be unwilling to break a
      fingernail to protect your country from an outside invader. Or,
      conversely, you can talk all you want about women's rights and yet
      secretly cheat on your wife. You can preach the environmental rape
      of the planet Earth and yet never even attempt to use public
      transportation, walk or ride a bike to work. High "flutin" opinions
      are BS to a child. They can see through the crap.

      No body's opinion is worth losing a friendship over. Remember that.
      An opinion is simply that, an opinion.
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