“Agree to Disagree” Doesn’t Give Us the License to be Jerks

It has been instilled in me by my parents that there are ways to be disagreeable without being an ass.  I have taken that to heart the older I get.  I won’t get into linking old posts about how I feel about civility.  I’ll let you look them up at your leisure.

We will always agree to disagree on small topics, hot-button topics, whether it’s frivolous, emotional, or to debate over batting averages.  That’s how we’re wired.  There is also a “cooling” off period that we should have for if it gets to be too much for ourselves.

As much as we try, there are a certain few who decide to do something so bush-league and demeaning, it overshadows whatever positive qualities that person has. 

Consider this story as a refresher on how to be civil.

Recently, an acquaintance of mine and another person had a debate in which they had opposing views.  Seeing that the debate was going nowhere and both sides were standing pat, the acquaintance wrote that “we agree to disagree” and politely ended the debate. 

The individual who disagreed with said acquaintance decided not to drop the issue, but to post the conversation on Facebook and ripped the acquaintance with some personal remarks.  The rant was demeaning, classless, and proved to me without a question of a doubt what this person is:  a sad and talented person. 

Nice job out of you.

Character assassination is a tactic that I have no tolerance for.  Disagree with the person, yes.  Voice your opinion, yes.  But to use the subject and personally attacking the person, because you didn’t like what that individual said?  

That’s bullshit and toxic. 

“Toxic people, companies, and environments will kill your company a lot faster than you think.”

-Ben Milne “environmental toxicity” November 2010

Sometimes we act, do, say, or write things out of anger, hate, and frustration.  I’m guilty of it at times, which makes me vigilant and careful when I type the words that you read on this site.  If there is something that burns me up or something I need to get off of my chest, I take a “chill pill”, step away from it and come back to it later.  It helps me put the situation in perspective or in a different light. 

As much as people don’t like this, I write without adding emotion to it.  You need to know the facts, the angles, and how I view things.  I always wish that the stuff I blog about is “wrong” because it helps me understand issues, things, and life better. 

It’s too bad that the individual who resorted to writing the rant and demeaning my acquaintance made the choice to do this. 

A cold bucket of water could have cooled that individual off. 

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