public service announcement ::
how to tell an actual thinking person from a person who THINKS he is a thinking person
when confronted with ideas that differ from his own, the actual thinking person is neither particularly surprised nor concerned.
he certainly is not offended.
and while he may state his own beliefs in due course, he is not terribly likely to jump right in to defend a position he has not yet stated nor to attack a position he has not yet fully considered.
he absolutely does not judge a contrary opinion to be ridiculous, ill considered, or actually outright evil simply because it differs from his own.
in most cases, even once he has thought things through and considered this strange new way of thinking and found he still disagrees with it, the actual thinking person is not likely to attach moral labels of any kind to the new idea.
so, if contrary opinions upset you, surprise you, outrage you, offend you;
if you feel the need to jump right in and contradict those ideas, attack them, or defend your own ideas because of them;
if you feel the need to immediately label ideas as immoral, foolish, or perhaps marxist, in fact if you feel any need whatsoever to be alarmist;
please – never again refer to yourself as a thinking person.
you are not one.
in fact . . . they terrify you and are probably just waiting for an opportunity to sneak into your home and eat your babies.