October 14, 2013

Do Not Deny Others the Opportunity to Learn From Their Mistakes

A temple
A temple (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

"If you don't agree with someone's religion," they say, "you should still respect it and just keep your thoughts to yourself." That doesn't seem terribly fair to me. Why should they get to talk about their religion when I cannot? If it is okay for them to share their thoughts about it, it should be okay for me to do the same.

If someone says something stupid - I mean really stupid - and you don't deliver a gentle mocking or at least express disagreement with what the person said, you are depriving the individual of the opportunity to learn from his or her mistake. Why would you withhold such an opportunity just because the stupid statement appears to be based on religion? Do you despise religious people so much that you would deny them the chance to learn from their mistakes? I certainly don't.

Not only do I not despise religious people enough to deprive them of the opportunity to learn from their mistakes, but I value the rest of us too much to do so either. Like it or not, the majority of the population continues to cling to religious beliefs. At least in the U.S., they are running the show and have lots of power over the rest of us. Is it not in our interest that they learn from their mistakes?