“That’s just like your opinion man.”
That line, of course, is one of the most famous quotes by the most legendarily accomplished of urban achievers in human history: Jeff “The Dude” Lebowski — a man who, despite the best efforts of Jackie Treehorn and the nihilists of the world, continues to inspire Zen slackers and bowling aficionados today.
That’s just your opinion man
It’s a far better response than “Oh yeah? Well, your mom is fat!”
And, keep in mind: it’s entirely possible that both sides of a discussion are correct. Don’t be so convinced of your own rectitude that your confidence (and potentially self-righteousness) prevents you from civil discourse and critical thinking. That’s a sure path to inbreeding.
That said, there will be times there’s just no point in expending time, effort, and emotional energy refuting or explaining to someone, particularly if they’re determined to be adversarial.
If it’s clear there will be no academic discussion to the benefit of those involved (or reading, or watching) — just press on. Arguments like those concerning high vs. low port, the relative merits of the C clamp, and the “best home defense gun” are now (and ever shall be) eternal. This doesn’t mean you should ignore a problem or misinformation, just be realistic about the potential outcome vs. the effort you put into it. Sometimes it’s just not worth the headache.
Remember — if everyone is thinking alike, no one is thinking. As the venerable and irascible Jim Shepherd says, “None of us is as smart as all of us.” You cannot exploit that fact without discussion — or at least an amenable disagreement.
- Don’t be intransigent or sanctimonious.
- Don’t get sucked into a debate-slash-argument you know isn’t going to have a positive or even neutral impact.
- Don’t forget: the fact that you disagree with someone doesn’t mean they’re wrong.
- Remember they may be thinking the same about you, with equal conviction.
Boots, bullets, boobs, blades, body armor — everyone has their favorite type and their own reasons for that preference.
It doesn’t always have to be a point of contention.