There are many ways to form an opinion: here are some options that I’m pretty sure many people practice:

Remember- you get to choose ONE:

  1. Read one article
  2. Watch one news report
  3.  read a tweet
  4. Read a retweet
  5. Read a newspaper article over someone’s shoulder, but miss the end because they left wherever you are
  6. Listen in on another conversation
  7. Only think about one side of an issue
  8. Watch one TV station and take what they say as indisputable
  9.  Listen to same podcast with same writer, director and researcher

How to Have an Argument:

  1. Make a claim you read or heard about somewhere
  2.  Repeat as many catch phrases as you can
  3. Refuse to consider hard data on subject that negates your opinion
  4.  Assume you are right
  5. Assume the other person is wrong
  6.  Don’t actually listen to the other person speak, instead, when they are speaking, prepare in your head what you will say next
  7.  Don’t answer any questions that they ask- divert to what you know
  8.  Resort to statistics that were compiled by your neighbor’s cousin’s dog groomer
  9.  Assume that the person you are arguing with is stupid


  1. Keep a narrow focus
  2.  Incite negativity
  3. Soundbites are your friend
  4. You know everything
  5. There are now twenty ways to describe your gender and sexuality, yet only one true opinion or side to any subject

As we are amidst the holiday season, we are bound to gather in groups. Many of these groups will contain members who have differing opinions.

NO ONE SIDE IS COMPLETELY RIGHT OR COMPLETELY WRONG– the vast majority is in the grey (I knew some analysts that would tell you that 1+1 isn’t necessarily 2, which might explain the crisis of 2008, but shows that really anything is debatable)

But I’m sure if you remember my tips, you’ll have a lovely gathering….


36 thoughts on “How To Form an Opinion, and Have an Argument

    1. We still need to listen to the completely wrong though, firstly because we need to be prepared for what they may do, and secondly because we need to understand why someone became such an outlier to begin with because we can’t fix an issue if we don’t know the cause, and we need to stop that thought at its root

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’ve got a point, for an ideal world, but I don’t think my listening and patient explaining is going to make any difference except to raise my blood pressure and increase my despondency on that front. The racists like listening to Trump more than they did Obama.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh I totally get it wanting to engage. It’s futile arguing with someone with no compassion or logic. But you did give me an idea….and we know how dangerous that is!

        Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s either that or spend my entire get together time in the kitchen cooking (since I do most of the hosting anymore, I can get away with that) and only have to deal with this while we are eating.

        Liked by 2 people

  1. I had to laugh because this reminded me of a time not so long ago with the cable cabals were all using the term “Gin up” . . . for everything! I am sure this bled into conversations, even if I never heard someone use it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The “Argument” aspect describes my husband in particular. I was considering sending a group text to everyone asking them to please be nice to each other for the one day that we have my mom here. I’d like to get through 24 hours without an upheaval but I’m not holding out much hope. That fact saddens me.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Fabulous post! I couldn’t agree more. Two of my husband’s friends (who are also good friends with each other) are at opposite political extremes. We are moderates. They all manage to have civil discussions. I’m not quite as good.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Everyone knows how to argue, people don’t know how to converse. People know how to hear but they don’t know how to listen. I try to stick to safe discussions although those can get heated also when you have someone who likes to argue. Oh well, I am determined not to feed into the frenzy.

    Liked by 1 person

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