Of Opinions and Judgments

On Monday, when I woke up I was in a horizontal straight line. But I couldn’t see my toes how much ever I tried. So in a pilgrimage to slim my belly down, I have started walking an hour daily. Podcasts are giving me company. I have subscribed to this great channel called This American Life. A particular one had my attention today. But let me give you a background. This is not different anywhere in the world. There are two leading actors in Tamil Industry. They haven’t acted in a good movie lately, but these days the success is measured by the money the movie mints. Whenever a Facebook page posts the image of one of the actors, we see the fans of others come and abuse the fans here and vice versa in the name of opinions. It became so bad that I had to unfollow few very good pages.

I have always wondered about these people. Don’t they have a life? Why would they waste their time in commenting bad words in a picture which is noway relevant to them. But then, I stumbled across this gem called “When you don’t have anything nice to say; Say it in ALL CAPS” in This American life. A MIT professor who was researching about optical illusions, posted a excerpt of his research in public and people who may or may not have completed their high school commented “Nah! Not convincing” I couldn’t even imagine what the professor would have gone through. The art of appreciating is slowly vanishing. And they say they just have opinions and not judgments.

Opinions are good when people have them for themselves and express when asked to or to add value. Opinions are not about degrading people. When we broadcast something as our opinion without us going through the same situation, it is considered absurd. I will tell you why. I am really new to twitter and I was appalled somebody flaunted that they had been blocked by celebrities. Dude! Is that even an achievement?

Lindy West
Lindy West – Made a troll apologize to her.

In 2013, Author Lindy West was trolled. She was plump and she was a comedienne. She didn’t take it kindly when the comedians joked about rape. Somebody created a twitter profile in the name of her dad and tweeted “I am ashamed of my daughter”. The worst thing is she had just lost her father to cancer. In an amazing turn of events, the troll apologized to her and they had a telephone conversation in a radio channel. When they dig deep into why he did what he did, he said “I was so angry that you are happy with who you are. I am not. And that made me angry” and when asked why he chose to apologize, he said “I realized I am attacking someone who didn’t attack me.”

The person had all the rights to form opinion on Lindy West. But broadcasting them is not cool. The worst thing is, this may be the person who helped you get up when you fell on the road. Or the person who fills your car with petrol. There is just so much of bile and hate in Internet which is termed as opinion. I may be opinionated for me, but judgmental for somebody else. Or to be precise, I quote Tiruvalluvar

இனிய உளவாக இன்னாத கூறல்
கனிஇருப்பக் காய்கவர்ந் தற்று.

There are scores of people who tweet or put status in FB immediately after they watch a movie. Are they opinionated or Judgmental? Wait for my next post please 🙂


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