Same Language, Different Thoughts, No Communication

I’m talking about when a discussion gets bogged down because of the different ways people use words, and different definitions… and it results in no communication taking place. No fun!

And I really do try. Normal dictionaries are no help. You can always find a definition somewhere that fits your thinking, and is contrary to the other definitions. Probably under the same entry.

So when this happens I tell them what a word means to me. I link to the “dictionary post” entry. I try to explain what I mean by the word, contrasted against what they mean by the word. Just as a way to get us talking about the same concept, even if we use different words. Deaf ears. They invariably refuse to listen.

For example, to me a right is anything you can do without violating another person, therefore you need no permission to do it. Anything. There are lots of ways to expand that thought, of course, but that’s the basic point.

And then I attract attention from people who want to argue over privileges while calling them “rights”. Or they want to change rights into privileges by allowing government (or some other gang) to hand out licenses for engaging in that behavior. Ugh.

Yeah, I realize almost no one out there “gets” rights. Too much conditioning, I suppose. Too much belief in “authority“.

Sorry, but if it can be lost or taken away, it isn’t a right. A right can be violated, though, but that’s not the sticking point they usually want to focus on. They simply can’t get over their point debating how and when rights can be lost or removed, to justify violating people’s rights in one way or another. Because that’s where it always leads.

And this same tactic goes on over many other concepts as well. It is frustrating.

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Kent McManigal

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