A Man Convinced Against His Will is a Believer Still

Jami - Alma, Arkansas
Entered on April 27, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: tolerance
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We were sitting in choir practicing our contest music, but all I could concentrate on was the annoying sound of two of my fellow sopranos fighting about abortion. No matter what was said neither girl would listen to the other without interrupting to voice her opinion on the issue. Then I realized that very few people can be persuaded from their ideas unless they are an unusually open minded person.

So this got me thinking. Why can’t we open our eyes and accept someone else’s opinions as mere opinions? Often, in times of debate we embarrass ourselves while trying to make others prove their credibility. It’s on the news all the time. The other night I was watching the news with my dad and it was one of those news channels were all they do is fight. So there I was watching two grown men fight for things that really didn’t matter. It was like they wanted the assurance of knowing they had proved their point, but they had lost all of their dignity.

This opened my eyes to something. Most of us have too big of heads to admit our ideas and beliefs are sometimes, in fact, wrong. If someone else has the same beliefs as us we often welcome their opinions with open arms, but as soon as someone else wants to give a different side to the issue we close our ears and stomp away mad.

All of these things have brought me to one final conclusion. I believe we believe what we want to believe. No matter what we try to do we can’t be swayed from our beliefs unless we consciously want to. This is displayed all around each one of us every day. We see it in the media, the government and in the religious sector.

As American’s we are taught to stand for our rights and beliefs no matter what others try to tell us. This is not always a fault in our culture, but sometimes it hinders our learning capabilities towards new ideas. If we don’t start recognizing that other people often have better and different ideas we will never be able to fully appreciate one another’s opinions.

We seem to always expect others to share our beliefs or be quiet, but on their side they expect the same things. So maybe if we will both be quiet it won’t be a fight and we can go right on living. We can keep our beliefs and keep a friend. We believe what we want to believe. This, I believe.