Becky Says...

February 2002

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February 24

I've been thinking a lot this weekend, in part on the subject of opinions. You know, there's a huge chasm between opinion and fact. For instance, a fact at the moment is that I'm wearing black slacks. (Take that on faith; I'm trying to make a point here and it's late in the day to gather witnesses.) But I could decide to form (and present for public consumption) an opinion that the slacks are white. It would be a misguided opinion, not based on reality and verifiably incorrect, but it could be presented as my opinion, nonetheless.

And in this case, it wouldn't be important, unless someone were using that one thing as a measure of my sanity or my vision.

But what if I formed a series of inaccurate opinions about something important? What if my opinions were sought out by people trying to understand something? If, after checking behind me, people came to the conclusion that my opinions were based on what I wanted to be the case, rather than on reality, would they continue to seek my thoughts?

I would hope not. I certainly would not continue to pay attention to someone whose opinions seemed based on thin air.

So what is my point? Well, that one should be careful whose opinions to honor with attention time. And one should never accept opinions as fact. Because they quite simply are not fact.

Put another way: no matter how many words I weave around them, proclaiming their lovely whiteness, the fact of the matter is the slacks I'm wearing tonight are black.

Text © copyright 2000-2002 Becky