Dealing With Disagreement in Debate

Something that often dissuades people from debating or arguing is disagreement. People tend to run away from disagreement in order to keep the peace with another individual or to avoid hurting someone’s feelings. The problem with this approach is that people then never discuss issues in their lives, and are thus mired in ignorance. Instead, people should argue and debate– but they should relax.

By “relax” I mean that people should realize that staying calm is the best way to ensure that one thinks clearly and logically. Obviously there are certain arguments that put people’s identities on the line (e.g. a gay man arguing in favor of gay marriage wouldn’t and shouldn’t be expected to detach his identity from the argument) but there is a difference between getting really worked up over an argument and being personally attached to an argument. Personal attachment is inevitable and in certain situations a good thing; getting pissed off often leads to saying offensive things that have nothing to do with the argument.

So let’s not run away from disagreement and debate, but instead try to remain calm and collected while having them.

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