Sometimes I find it pointless to argue with the 99%’ers, because most of them are stuck on a belief. And beliefs are hard to change. A belief is a thought that has escaped their consciousness and entered their subconscious. They no longer question it. They accept it as fact and reality. They validate it by finding others who agree with them or by taking coincidences as evidence for their beliefs. And with each validation, their beliefs grow ever stronger. It comes to a point when their beliefs can allow them to deflect reality and logic.
You want to know why I’m successful? I listen. I learn. I adapt. I keep an open mind. But I also don’t believe everything I hear. My parents taught me to be a Christian, but I questioned my faith, and I ended up an Agnostic. I am not sure whether there is a God or not, because there is no proof for either. A book, written 2000 years ago, is not definitive proof. I don’t even dare to believe in Atheism, because that would mean that I’d shut my mind off to the possibility that there is a god. Thus, being Atheist, in my mind, is almost as close-minded as believing in a religion unquestionably.
You can test someone’s open-mindedness by examining their reactions to talks about religion. See, if a person were close-minded, that person would ignore the logic behind what I just said in the previous paragraph. Instead, that person would let his emotions and beliefs take over his thought-process and possibly feel angry. Sometimes even though that person may start thinking that he may be wrong, he will still try to be defensive/offensive and start grasping for any type of validation he could find. And when the evidence is not there, he resorts to name-calling and possibly violence.
They say that politics and religion are topics that you should never talk about. People tie their emotions too much to politics and religion. They cannot discuss it openly without being civil about it. That’s what’s wrong with society. Lack of open-mindedness. Lack of bipartisanship. Lack of civil discussion. The left mocks the right for their ideas, and the right mocks the left for their ideas. The bottom calls the top greedy. The top calls the bottom lazy.
When I talk to people I don’t agree with, I tend to ask questions instead of throw accusations. I like to learn about where that person is coming from and why that person believes his beliefs. See, by being sympathetic, you open your mind to new ideas, and you might even get a friend out of it. I don’t think that torture is as effective, because torturers are forcing the person to remove his beliefs through pain. But if you convince the person that you are his friend, you tend to get more information out of them. “Keep your enemies closer”, they say.