|The Fanatics of Tangier by Eugène Delacroix|
1. a person filled with excessive and single-minded zeal, especially for an extreme religious or political cause.
synonyms: zealot, extremist, militant, dogmatist, devotee, adherent;
informal: a person with an obsessive interest in and enthusiasm for something, especially an activity. "a fitness fanatic"
1. filled with or expressing excessive zeal. "his fanatic energy"
mid 16th century (as an adjective): from French fanatique or Latin fanaticus ‘of a temple, inspired by a god,’ from fanum ‘temple.’ The adjective originally described behavior or speech that might result from possession by a god or demon, hence the earliest sense of the noun ‘a religious maniac’ (mid 17th century). (Source)
Well, I was going to address an incident which occurred on Facebook over the weekend, but Tuna covered that pretty well yesterday. Rather than come up with a completely new topic (something my brain just isn't capable of these days, lack of sleep, Mama ain't home yet, blah, blah, blah) I decided to go ahead and get semi-political, semi-philosophical today anyway. Blame Tuna, actually blame the trolls, which are (knock on wood) rare around here. So buckle your seatbelts, ensure your seats are in the upright position, and your tray tables are stowed, it could get bumpy.
In my opinion, I daresay that 75% of the world's problems are caused by fanatics of one flavor or another. Another 20% are caused by stupid people who are not fanatics but somehow get to positions of influence. The remaining 5% are due to random chance.
a view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge. "I'm writing to voice my opinion on an issue of great importance"
synonyms: belief, judgment, thought(s), (way of) thinking, mind, (point of) view, viewpoint, outlook, attitude, stance, position, perspective, persuasion, standpoint; sentiment, conception, conviction "she did not share her husband's opinion"as I see it, to my mind, (according) to my way of thinking, personally, in my estimation, if you ask me, for my money, in my book "in my opinion, the green tiles clash with the yellow walls"
- the beliefs or views of a large number or majority of people about a particular thing. "the changing climate of opinion"
- an estimation of the quality or worth of someone or something. "I had a higher opinion of myself than I deserved"
- a formal statement of advice by an expert on a professional matter. "seeking a second opinion from a specialist"
- LAW - a formal statement of reasons for a judgment given.
- LAW - a lawyer's advice on the merits of a case.
Middle English: via Old French from Latin opinio(n-), from the stem of opinari ‘think, believe.’ (Source)
Opinions are like .
Yes, that was the first ever "fill in the blank question" here at Le Chant du Départ.
Far too often I think we all get wrapped up in arguments over opinions and not over the facts. If I say, "The weather is very nice today." that's an opinion. You could disagree with that opinion, perhaps you think the weather is either too hot or too cold. What suits me meteorologically may not suit you. Neither opinion is wrong, neither opinion is based on objective fact.
Now if I say, "It's raining outside" and you say "No, it's not" that is something that can be measured objectively. It's either raining or it's not, it's not something that can be argued.
Yet people will often argue about opinions. For instance, I think the current President is a complete idiot and has no more business leading the United States than I would have playing quarterback for the Green Bay Packers. My kid brother, on the other hand, along with numerous friends of mine, would vociferously disagree. They like the guy. I do not.
While there may be objective facts one could use to measure his success as President in comparison to previous Presidents, most often the arguments boil down to personal feelings and beliefs.
In 1933 a majority of Germans elected a leader they thought would be just peachy and do great things for Deutschland. While it didn't turn out that way, at the beginning who knew? There were facts which would lead an objective observer to deduce that the man would be an absolute disaster for Germany and Europe, but one had to be paying attention. Hitler made no bones about his plans in Mein Kampf. The facts were there, few paid attention.
No, I'm not comparing the current occupant of the White House to Hitler. I merely cite Nazi Germany as an example of what happens to a people who are either not paying attention or are letting their own desires and opinions stand in the way of rational thought.
For a less violent example there is my own opinion of the New England Patriots hiring Bill Belichick as their head coach back in 2000. I expressed my opinion that that would be an absolute disaster. He came from the Cleveland Browns, who arguably sucked at playing football. (Opinion, though there are certain facts supporting that. Like their record under Coach Belichick.)
I think it's safe to say that I couldn't have been more wrong. Six Super Bowl appearances, four Super Bowl wins and damn near in the playoffs every year (save one) since he was hired. My opinion was fact-based, but it was only my opinion. When you also consider that the Belichick Browns eventually moved to Baltimore and have been competitive ever since, perhaps Coach B wasn't that bad there either.
Again, facts showed I was wrong. (For those who whine / complain about the Patriots "cheating," put on your big boy pants and go read this, they all cheat. That's a fact. Sure I root for the Patriots as I'm from New England. I also root for the Broncos because I went to college in Colorado. I still have a great deal of warm feelings for Green Bay as well, I was a Packer fan as a youth. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say I was a fan of Vince Lombardi, Bart Starr, Jerry Kramer and Jim Taylor, et al. Times change, personnel change. Loyalty to a sports team is, for me, fleeting. My loyalties are to family, God and country.)
When I go up north to visit family, we don't talk politics, we all have differing outlooks on des affaires politiques. It's better if we stay away from that topic. Which we do and we get along just fine. Only a boor would bring up politics in a social setting or familial gathering. It's that whole "things not to be discussed in the wardroom" concept. In order to have a polite society there are rules to be followed.
Unfortunately, in this Old Sarge's opinion, we don't seem to have any rules these days. I don't know who to blame, perhaps the media is too easy a target. No doubt my late Dad would blame the Beatles, long hair and all that followed.
As I get older, I often wonder if he might have been right to some extent.