Sunday, February 19, 2006

Fundamental ideots [sic & pun]

I've been contemplating, in wake of the recent cartoon craziness, unshakeable a priori beliefs and the woes of the world.

Certainty can become a curse. To be certain means you are not prepared to change your mind and re-evaluate your position in light of new evidence and/or argument. It becomes a curse when you are so certain you are right, you believe it is your moral obligation to force others (the fools) to hold your point of view too.

Thus the most difficult of all opponents in a debate or argument is the fundamental Ideologue. A person whose Simple-Minded Certitude is so overwhelming, they are incapable of reason. For example, how can one attempt to argue the legitimacy of gay rights, say, with someone who believes that homosexuals will literally burn in the flames of hell?

You can tell you are in trouble if their "argument" consists only of quotes from the Bible (for example - or the Koran, the Communist Manifesto, the Constitution of the United States, UN resolutions and so on). Chances are, the person you are engaged in conversation with wouldn't know an original thought if they were hit in the head with it. It's best to simply give up - go and do something useful and less painful - does your lawn need mowing, does your prostate need examination?