The Mounting Danger of ARROGANCE: Creating Relationship-destroying Polarization

What role does arrogance play in our critical conversations?

The Mounting Danger of ARROGANCE: Creating Relationship-destroying Polarization

I was in a conversation recently with three good friends of various worldviews. One of them had fortunately come to realize the danger of the COVERT-19 jabs soon enough to avoid it. However, now she was voicing a strong, yet almost completely uninformed opinion of the war in Ukraine, Critical Race Theory and Universal Basic Income (UBI).

When I asked her some challenging questions, she moved to end the conversation by simply saying, “Well, you have your truth and I have mine.” She was triggered by my questions and my suggestion of alternative facts and ethics.

I asked her, “Where do you get your news?” I expected she would refer to the usual bubble of CNN, MSNBC, New York Times, or Washington Post. But she said, “No, I don’t have any news sources other than the opinions of friends.” I said that, in my experience, it was very rare that anyone could change the way someone else thinks in a brief social conversation. She said, “I disagree, I formed my opinion about UBI in a single conversation with a friend who convinced me that because of my white privilege, I was obligated to support the redistribution of wealth to people who needed money.” That was a reminder to me that a coherent logical position takes time to present and consider, but the effect of shaming can get very quick, impassioned results. This renders people very malleable…what Henry Kissinger called “useful idiots.”

This woman thought I was being arrogant by seeming to know so much. I reminded her that I have researched these things full time and for decades.

I said that if we were discussing surfing, music theory or cooking, I would be looking to learn from her because she knows much more about those topics than I do.

When it comes to politics, or current events, many people have been indoctrinated by the combination of social Marxism and postmodernist theory to believe that there is no truth and no morality. Therefore, one person’s opinion is just as valid as another’s, even if they’re way less informed.

We are being used by the would-be controllers to demoralize, de-stabilize and destroy family, friendships, critical thinking and one another.

ARROGANCE — Let’s unpack it. The dictionary definition is “offensive display of superiority or self-importance, overbearing pride.” I agree that being overbearing or bragging is obnoxious and unproductive.

My working definition is “Arrogance is Ignorance with an Attitude.”

We need a meeting place above the trap of polarizing conversations.

Sometimes we know enough for an obvious Yes. Other times it’s clearly a No. And many times we don’t know enough yet for clarity. That’s when it’s time for “Perhaps…I don’t know yet.”

Rather than yelling, insulting or storming out on one another, we need to be able to reflect on our familiarity with the facts and logic of a situation and, if it’s true, to be able to say…

“I don’t know much about that. Let’s explore together.”

We each have a right to any opinion. That doesn’t mean it’s accurate, coherent or moral. We don’t have the moral right to impose our ideology on others in the form of taxation, UBI, war, a military draft etc. — even if it’s been “legalized.”

We need to find the integrity to admit when we aren’t informed enough to have a grounded, coherent opinion.

We don’t need to be an expert on every topic. We have the opportunity to be teammates with anyone and everyone on this planet who is genuinely questing for truth. We can listen without agreeing. We can take time to reflect… instead of needing to act certain. We can ask questions to learn more from each other.

It is not impressive presentations or manipulative bullying that will get us out of this mess. It’s authentic expression and humble listening which can join us on “team truth.” As Lara Logan says, “Only truth stands up to questioning.”

When we stand for truth and freedom, we can stand strong together.