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Passing judgment

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
Just a bit of a rant, confession, and curiosity.

Just about every thread in here we (collectively) pass judgment on someone without knowing the whole story.

There was the hypothetical thread about having to put down your own pet, and there were certainly a few who were adamantly opposed to anyone "playing god" but were quick to condemn anyone who had made or would ever have to make that choice.

Then there's threads like the John Edwards thread. Most of us can't understand it, and I'll fully admit (here's the confession part) that I condemn his actions of having an affair not just because of the whole trust issue, but because he did it while his wife was still fighting breast cancer. That hits close to home - my mother died of breast cancer, and I can't think of a more horrible thing for a man to do than betray his wife when she needs him the most like that. OK fine, she was in remission. That should have been a time when they were closer than ever, not when he steps out on her.

Even on political issues, it seems easy to condemn something like abortion or gay marriage or the death penalty or gun ownership. But it's come up here multiple times that people here are from all walks of life and different life experiences, so someone may have had to choose to put down their own pet, or had an affair, or had an abortion, or is gay, or a victim of a violent crime where the perp may be eligible for the death penalty, or is a gun owner.

I really don't even know where I'm going with this. It just makes me sad when someone casts judgment unknowingly on someone who takes it personally, and makes me so angry when someone casts judgment knowingly. But at the same time, it's hard not to do it too, at least unknowingly. IMO you can disagree with someone's choices (if that's how you see it), but to actually condemn them or harass them because of it is nothing short of hateful and juvenile.
post #2 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb View Post
IMO you can disagree with someone's choices (if that's how you see it), but to actually condemn them or harass them because of it is nothing short of hateful and juvenile.
Absolutely! I completely agree with that comment. And I hope that people here are able to do that. It gets hard, and it's really hard to tell when people are writing about a generality and not a specific person or situation, and when they are only condoning the action and not the person.

In fact, ages ago there was a thread where one person (A) seemed to be accusing another (B) that, because B didn't approve of homosexual marriages, that B hated homosexuals, and I made a post similar (though not nearly as well worded!) to what you said. It is possible to not agree with a decision, and still respect the person deciding it. There are many (I made a list, he he) actions and decisions that I completely disagree with, but still not only love, but RESPECT the person. A simple example- my uncle smokes. I hate that fact, but still love him and respect him. Not his decision, but him.

Basically, I agree completely with your opinion and think you worded it very well. Hopefully we can all continue to keep that in mind as we discuss our opinions here and share even our intimate feelings.
post #3 of 20
It seems to me that every day people personally make judgments on things they know little about without even thinking. Or if they only know one side. This is how stereotypes came to be...easier than getting to know someone. Humans operate on not knowing the full picture many times. Or not caring to know. They want to feel comfortable and validated, even if that means someone else does not. That is how I feel when I am sometimes reading the IMO threads that other people think. It frustrates me sometimes too, but I still think it is better to share than to not speak up.
post #4 of 20
Yeah I really hate it when people jump to conclusions based on almost no information.

Like it's really annoying when you are trying to probe peoples thoughts on a particular subject and they jump all over you and assume you have taken a particular stand when all you have done is continue as ask questions.

Yup, darn annoying...
post #5 of 20
It happened to me before. I have a cat that could not be fixed and she got preg at 10 because my brother. I had to leave her at my dads place because where I lived didnt take Cats. So some people wrote very nasty posts to me saying I caused Cats to die at the pound. The truth is we kept the kittens and Coco has never got preg again She is now 16 and that was her only litter. I wish I had known the male wasnt fixed then. Everything is ok with those people now but they should not have said anything until they heard the whole story. If I had the money then I would have took my sisters cat and had him fixed. I agree with what you both said. My Mom also died from Breast Cancer.
I agree with this part Then there's threads like the John Edwards thread. Most of us can't understand it, and I'll fully admit (here's the confession part) that I condemn his actions of having an affair not just because of the whole trust issue, but because he did it while his wife was still fighting breast cancer. That hits close to home - my mother died of breast cancer, and I can't think of a more horrible thing for a man to do than betray his wife when she needs him the most like that. OK fine, she was in remission. That should have been a time when they were closer than ever, not when he steps out on her. My Dad was always there for my Mom.
post #6 of 20
Funny thing ........I think that's one good thing that has come of me having had an affair......I'm no longer quite as quick to pass judgement on someone as I used to be, not without knowing the whole story....I guess you could say its made me a little more tolerent, not sure if thats really the word I want, but I'm just about brain dead right now.
post #7 of 20
I think most of the people here are genuinely nice and what they say in these threads are just opinions that sometimes get turned into something else by others taking offense to what their opinion was. Many things could be avoided when people refrain from hot-headed responses.

But I agree, there are people that just judge and force their opinions on others and bicker for fun or even harass others. And that's just rude.
post #8 of 20
I can be a very judgmental person. However I also respect peoples' right to have an opinion different than my own. But I also can get upset when that opinion knowingly affects the lives of other people and the person seems either oblivious to that fact, or just doesn't care.
post #9 of 20
while i've never made any secret of my beliefs, i also believe [& think i probably stated the same] that everyone is entitled to disagree w/me & live their lives in a different manner.
they are free to believe i am wrong to have these beliefs, just as i am free to believe they are wrong to make the choices they make.
insofar as the John Edwards thing... i didn't post in that thread. i'd never knowingly vote for anyone who broke the trust of a marriage. i'd consider that person to be untrustworthy, & wouldn't want an untrustworthy person to be head of the country.
post #10 of 20
IMO is a forum open for debate. I think most people here don't actually attack the person, but more debate and ask for more substantial background to back up their point of view. Some are just plain emotional opinions and that is just based on their own beliefs and cant be substantiated. Hence why my mother taught me not to discuss religion or politics because that is all your own beliefs, not based on fact. (of course, I didn't follow her teachings because I'm here! )

Some things will become emotional, because it is based on personal beliefs that will NOT be changed unless the acutal person decides to change. I actually enjoy reading IMO opinion but don't do it often because I honestly don't have the knowledge for some topics to answer and back up my answer.

But, arguements will start over emotional issues. I don't think anyone really means to be rude or offensive. These are just very heated issues and sometimes it seems like personal attacks.
post #11 of 20
I appologize if my Edwards thread offended anyone. Not my intention!!!

However, after being cheated on by an ex and going through the heartbreak and devistation that unfaithful partners cause, i can definitely say that i understand what it's like to be betrayed by a loved one. I consider everyone- whether in a position of authority or just an average person to be accountable for their actions -and well, i find it hard to trust someone, especially someone running for such a high position when they do something like that. I feel that is someone's own family can't trust them, then i can not trust them to lead or to be honest and trustworthy- so yes, judgemental or not, that makes me not want to trust that person. Everyone should be accountable for their actions (private and public)- and lying about it- well that just makes it much worse and betrays the trust even further. The purpose of the Edwards thread was to obtain some insight as to what others thought about that situation.
post #12 of 20
I think the Edwards thread was a current affairs issue. It raises a lot of questions.
I remember when I found an email on my husband's computer where he was planning to fly his mistress across country to stay in my house while I was with my parents healing after my surgery. I was dealing with a loss of a chance to ever have children again. I was dealing with a deadly type of cancer that few ever survive and he was planning a rendezvous with this 'other' woman. I can't even begin to tell you what that felt like. I had to plan my future while trying to deal with my own mortality. I never want to feel that kind of pain and betrayal ever again.

But I try to refrain from passing judgment too harshly on other people. Facing the chance of dying has changed me a lot. I am much more compassionate than I was before. I have more empathy in my heart and I try to come from a place of kindness. I try to treat people as I would want to be treated. I try to see someone else's point of view and grow from it.
Sometimes IMO board is hard because I read things and can't fathom where someone is coming from.
I have come to understand that there are people who like to agitate and provoke and knowing that helps me not react. I start to avoid them instead.

van-I am sorry you are feeling frustrated. I think your thread is very good and something that needed to be discussed.
post #13 of 20
I tend to bow out of those threads entirely, or before it gets to that point. And while I may not agree with everyone's opinions or thoughts, my Christian upbringing leads me back to, "Love the sinner, not the sin."

Now, don't take it the wrong way. I'm not saying that having different opinions makes you a sinner, I'm just saying that you can take the same attitude with someone who does have a differing opinion, "Love the person, not their opinion."
post #14 of 20
IMO, I think that sometimes people are really playing "Devil's Advocate" - it's not necessarily what they really think or feel, but they put a thought out there to see the reactions.
Sorta like JC provoking Joey and Andrea - he gets some pretty good growls, hisses & sometimes face slaps, but he seems to be totally amused and I realize that despite the raised fur & flattened ears, it all blows over so quickly, that they all are in it for the entertainment
post #15 of 20
This amuses me...this whole thread...

You may have noticed that I rarely post anymore...simply because judgement here is always passed...it is IMO after all...

Everyone passes judgement whether they know all the facts or not...

I am Muslim, therefore, I am a terrorist, No?

(Basic assumption or judgment call?)

ETA - I'm also a breeder therefore I

a) Take away homes from shelter cats
b) Contribute to the stray population...
post #16 of 20
There are people on this site that argue for the sake of arguing and nothing else. I've figured out who those people are and don't respond to them anymore.

What bothers me is when people cast judgement without knowing the facts. I'm opinionated, but try to reserve judgement until I research the issue.

Hey - I hit both the McCain and Obama threads this morning because they were both pushing propoganda!
post #17 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abymummy View Post
This amuses me...this whole thread...

You may have noticed that I rarely post anymore...simply because judgement here is always passed...it is IMO after all...

Everyone passes judgement whether they know all the facts or not...

I am Muslim, therefore, I am a terrorist, No?

(Basic assumption or judgment call?)

ETA - I'm also a breeder therefore I

a) Take away homes from shelter cats
b) Contribute to the stray population...
I think people are too sensitive to what others say and take things way more personal than is intended. Someone's opinion is just that. Unless someone particularly calls out another member with their comment, it's their general opinion of the situation being discussed, not any one individual. To me, the more personal someone takes my opinion, the less sure I think they are of their own. If my argument hits so closely to them they are feeling "judged," they might need to reevaluate where they actually stand in regards to the subject. Maybe their "solid ground" isn't as secure as they think, if my little old opinion shakes it so much.

PS: I think you should share your kitties with us more.
post #18 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by neetanddave View Post
I think people are too sensitive to what others say and take things way more personal than is intended.
It's human nature and it comes in different degrees depending on outside factors like culture, environment, religion... My reaction to opinions I do not agree with is usually confusion not condemnation. I think when someone refuses to listen to another, it is then that they resort to putting down that person for their beliefs.
post #19 of 20
I think that every one is entitled to their opinion, which is what they believe.

I believe one way, and there might be someone else who believes another way. That makes neither one of us right or wrong, just the way that we believe.

There are so many though, that believe what they believe is the right way. They don't feel that others can believe another way.

If I believe one way, no one will change that. But I am entitled to that. There are lots of people here who just believe that they can try and change the way others believe.

When stuff happens here I try and state how I believe and I always say how I could or couldn't do anything. No one knows but me how I could or couldn't do anything don't try and change any one opinions on how they believe. If I think something is wrong I say it, but that is just my opinion. But then no one has the right to tell me I am wrong either.

I try and get along with others, but there are people that you can not just get along with. And that is just not on this board either, that is on every message board.
post #20 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by yayi View Post
It's human nature and it comes in different degrees depending on outside factors like culture, environment, religion... My reaction to opinions I do not agree with is usually confusion not condemnation. I think when someone refuses to listen to another, it is then that they resort to putting down that person for their beliefs.
I agree with you. We all come from different places in our lives and it shapes who we are.
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