I miss empiricism. I miss critical thinking. These are elements of logic and rational thought that are sorely missing in our society.
I plan on discussing many of these issues in detail in other posts. For now I want to focus on a recent example involving a response to one of my posts on a different website.
I had posted a review of our current apartment complex on a ratings website. My review is summed up in the bullet points in this post. One of the people who responded based their response on so many assumptions the only way to describe it is that they pretty much fictionalized my review.
First off, the person described me as suffering from “entitlemntitis.” My first reaction to this word was “what kind of wing-nut buzzword is that?” The only thing I can figure is that this is a made up “disorder” used to described people who have the nerve to demand fair treatment. Of course I’m biased in my description. It was obvious from the response that the person meant that it’s people who think they’re entitled to everything and throw “a page long temper tantrum” if they don’t get it. (Yes, the poster actually used the phrase in quotes).
What’s interesting to me is the “entitlements” that the responder specifically highlighted in the response: disabled parking and non-English speakers. I abhor political correctness to the point that we even embrace the worst ills of our communities, but the disabled and people who can’t speak English? Given the current political climate and a growing faction of “learn the language or leave” mentality, treating not speaking English as a detriment can be unfortunately expected (I’ll address in another post). But disabilities? Really? I’m taking poetic license here, just like the poster did with “entitlemntitis” – have we’ve gotten to the point in society where we figuratively kick disabled people to the side and say, “It’s unfair if you don’t have to travel as far as me even if you’re not as mobile?”
What the hell? Now, granted, I could be a lot worse off than other people. I thankfully do not have to use a wheelchair or cane (yet), but because of my condition I am in near-constant pain. Although I’m much younger, more than one doctor has told me that I have the back of someone in their 60′s. Because of this, doctors…medical professionals…more than ONE have told me not to exercise. When was the last time you heard a doctor say that? The reason for this is because if I injure my back now, it’s more than likely that I will end up in a wheelchair.
I did not post this in my review, because well, I didn’t think going into that much detail was necessary. Medical issues tend to be private. However, the person who responded made some assumptions and suggested that I “begged” my doctor for the disability placard so that both me and my husband could have good parking spots because I was the type of person who would exploit anyone or any situation to get what I wanted.
Again, what the hell? Am I missing something? Do you all really get that from my post on our apartment woes? Please comment and tell me if this is the case and I should have been more clear/detailed in what I wrote.
And just for further clarity, my husband and I never both got good parking spots. I had a disabled spot and my husband continued to search for available parking outside in the first-come-first-serve area. The issue with Shorewood was always them blocking disabled spots inside the garage, not that they wouldn’t give two premium spots. Also, once my back started showing improvement and I was in less pain (meaning I could walk farther without the lower half of my body going numb), I stopped parking in the disabled spots so that others who were less mobile could have them.
Now, just with the piece on my mobility issues, see how posting an opinion based on assumptions at worst – anecdotal evidence at best – can be used to twist people’s perspectives in such a way that people start believing something that is, well, just not correct?
Are people okay with basing opinions on fallacy? This anecdotal evidence would say yes, but this is something that I’ve seen on countless occasions. Seeing this behavior time and again makes me feel like we’re dealing with a society full of people from what I’m beginning to call “Generation Huh?” We had Generation X…then came Generation Why?….it seems to be that a better description is “Generation Huh?” because people don’t even ask “why” that much anymore. Few people question things to gain further understanding. Instead, they fly off the handle based on one piece of information.
Is it too much to ask that people seek out facts and/or information before forming any opinions or theories? Sadly, the answer to this seems to be yes. It’s weird. With technology we have access to more information and the ability to interact with more people than ever before, yet many do not use it to improve their perspectives or world views. Instead it’s as if technology – with everything at our fingertips – has encouraged us to embrace instant gratification to the point that unless the information is provided to us, we can’t possibly be bothered to search for it ourselves.
Great times and sad times, y’all.