Friday, October 28, 2011
Agree to Disagree
I am feeling a little distressed and I'm not entirely sure why but I think it has to do with the fact that people have turned my remarks into a battle. Several of my posts have been slightly controversial and I understand that. However, it bothers me that some think that someone having a different opinion or belief means that we need to fight to prove the other wrong. I believe this type of aggression is what gives men the bad name of being unnecessarily aggressive, inconsiderate, and destructive. All through history war after war after war was fought in order to prove that one person was right and the other was wrong. In reality no minds or opinions were changed by fighting these wars, people continued having their beliefs but worshiped in hiding or in the safe corners of their minds.
Look at the Crusades, religious wars, blessed by the Pope and the Catholic church, fought between the years 1095 and 1291. The Crusades were primarily against those of the Muslim faith who had became a major presence in the city of Jerusalem, a city that was sacred to both Christians, Muslims and Jews. These wars waged for nearly 200 years and did anyone prove the other wrong? NO. Christianity is still the primary religion in Europe and their is still a strong Muslim influence in Jerusalem.
So how is this like today and our situation? People have differing opinions, there are many different religions and as many ways of understanding those religions as their are people in this world. We are never going to see eye to eye with everyone on everything. With that said why do men, and women, tend to think that if someone has a differing opinion then it is their responsibility to prove that person wrong. Often these people trying to prove the other wrong are those who speak of equality and open mindedness but then brutally attack and insult those who disagree with them, whether that disagreement was aggressive or not. It would be an amazing thing if people would stop trying to fight all the time and try to understand where the other person is coming from. Your experience is yours and nobody elses so your opinion cannot be right for everyone. That holds true to my feelings and beliefs about homosexuality. Do I think change is possible? Yes. Do I think everyone should be forced into that change? Absolutely not. Everyone has a different situation in life and the solution to dealing with a situation is not going to be the same for everyone which is why I believe both those seeking change and those wanting to embrace their homosexual attractions should be respected. There is no reason why people with these two opposing opinions cannot be friends and learn and grow from each other.
I had an experience in a group I was facilitating not too long ago. The group was for youth in the Juvenile Justice System and was primarily heterosexual young men. There was one homosexual youth who wanted advice on a relationship he was in. This youth did not have a supportive family and the only person he cared about in the world was his boyfriend. In this individual's situation this was what he wanted and what would make him happy and I would not say anything to try and take that away from him, this was the only person he had in the world and I hope they have a wonderful relationship. On the other hand I worked with another individual who was experiencing these feelings and was suicidal over the thought that he had no choice. He had been fed the rhetoric that he had to act on and embrace these feelings in order to find true happiness. He tried that and it didn't work for him and he was now feeling suicidal because what he really wanted in life was a wife and a family. That individual now has that and could not be happier. In either of these situations why would anyone want to take that freedom of choice away? Two people are finding happiness in this life and both people are alive and well because they had a choice.
So I guess my point in this is to say that my intention of voicing these opinions was not attack or hurt anyone but to present an underrepresented theory that has done good for thousands of individuals. And just because I hold this opinion as true does not mean I think all people should take this path. What I wish is that those on either side of this battle could be peaceful and understanding of each other rather than constantly attacking each other and trying to prove their point. Why can't we just agree to disagree and respect the choices and opinions of others?
Posted by Daniel Caldwell at 9:24 AM