The current explosion of information and information availability has led to the creation of a critic in every rational human being. The conception of every idea of whatever subject often leads to people expressing thoughts on that specific idea. It faces the jury, so to speak; the people it affects or influences.
What most people do not realize is that as much as honest opinions are welcome, being opinionated does not lead to any positive contribution, which is what people need for motivation. The differences between perceptions and significance of opinions and opinionated expressions are of great impact to society’s view of criticism.
Right of Expression
This is normally part of the laws encompassed in countries’ constitutions in the Bill of Rights. This bill guarantees that the government can never deprive anyone of his/her right to express his/her feelings on any particular situation (American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Para 2). It is from this that people get the right to express opinions on different issues freely. The limitation however comes along when the relevant individual takes offence on the opinion relayed. This is usually when abusive tones are used.
Of Opinions and Opinionated Expressions
As much as opinions are welcome, opinionated arguments often come off as unwanted. Many a time, people confuse the two terms and claim to be airing views innocently. To avoid such misjudgments, it is important that people understand the differences.
Opinions encompass different individuals’ expressions that express points of view on certain situations. Society views opinions as positive too, and lead to improvement in quality of the issue at hand. For this reason, more of them are encouraged.
On the contrary, opinionated expressions bear exactly opposite characters as those of opinions. These draw no limit to the comments aired as “they spout out one self-important proclamation after another” (Brooker). Opinionated people only offer self-centered contributions on everything arguable.
In character, the opinionated do not lack comments on anything, even when the details are unknown. Society further understands the character argumentative on issues from just the topic of conversation, not even requiring the body that bears with it details of the issue. Since these opinionates value opinions this much, none holds back when it comes to expressing them. Due to this feature, society does not favor rather it shuns them. Reception of arguments from them is normally with skepticism and is never welcome.
Information nowadays is readily available in public resource through the television, radio, in the dailies and the largest of resources that is the internet. These are facts available to public hence provide a backbone for strong arguments. People express opinions and use these information resources as a base for arguments. Due to this, such arguments end up giving rise to new ideas and concepts that develop various aspects of our day-to-day endeavors.
Contrary to this, opinionated sentiments are baseless most of the time. Opinionated people usually have this urge, from the self-centered trait, to address magnitudes. This makes them create arguments out of very basic norms in life; backed by virtual statistics made up to suite and strengthen arguments involved. This therefore explains the old adage that one makes a fool of himself when he/she argues with a fool. Opinionated arguments create a blur to the truth, hence the reason they make a fool of the listener.
Society respects individuals who take time to look into the numerous situations at hand and after thorough analysis air views. Such people ooze of inspiration and positivism, hence receive a lot of respect from the community. This effect on the surrounding gives them the opportunity to contribute seriously in most cases when concerns are voiced.
The opinionated express this feeling in a different way though. Being attention seekers by nature, these individuals react differently to the fact that society favors them. Such people deal with this issue by picking petty arguments and sticking to them to gain the respect of an individual that sticks to his/her principles. The problem here comes in the resulting position. Society ends up viewing them as rigid to change and not ready to embrace new developments.
Surrounding one’s self with individuals with positive motives has also proven to ensure relaxation of mind and body and instilling of inner peace. Opinionated individuals often turn mere beliefs into facts and in the negative nature elevate the stress levels in the audience (Goulston). Psychologists therefore advice people to avoid opinionated individuals to handle stress better. Very little or no good comes from hanging around them.
Everyone wants to contribute occasionally, but the wise are equipped with the humility to be able to hold back thoughts and in the end come up with opinions based on all the relevant facts. Being opinionated only shows rigidity in the person’s character, hence not one that will easily adapt to the dynamics of life. The opinionated, if disciplined develop into very effective critics, which is what the world needs more. One does not read results if born of only likeminded individuals.
American Civil Liberties Union. 2003. “Your Right to Free Expression”. 17 July, 2003. Web 22 October 2010. http://www.aclu.org/free-speech/your-right-free-expression
Brooker, Charlie. “Charlie Brooker on opinionated People”. The Guardian. 22 Jan. 2007. Web 22 October 2010. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2007/jan/22/comment.charliebrooker
Goulston, Mark. “Know any Opinionated People?” Psychology Today. 13 Sept. 2010. Web 22 October 2010. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/just-listen/201009/know-any-opinionated-people