So it turns out that Charles Darwin may have been wrong about the mechanism that governs the formation of coral atolls. If you didn’t know that Darwin even had an opinion about the way atolls are formed, you’re in good company – no one else did either. Most people are, however, familiar with the theory of evolution that he very famously espoused. In case you missed that day in school, the theory of evolution states that God doesn’t exist and that people who believe in Him are dumb. It also states that scientists are evil alien pod beasts with a hidden agenda to hide the truth from the rest of us.
Wait a second – oops! Sorry, I got distracted there for a second by reading the comment thread following this article. An overwhelming majority of the comments are better suited for elementary school parking lot fights than for anything resembling rational discourse. Evolution, like plenty of other difficult issues, tends to make people throw logic and respect completely out the window. Which is exactly what I want you to do!
So, in honor of the people who posted comments in the comment thread of an article questioning the particulars of one esoteric element of the theory of evolution, I’d like to share with you a few conflict resolution techniques to keep in mind whenever your next argument happens:
Base Your Opinion Entirely on Your Own Personal Experience! This is a favorite tactic of people who absolutely refuse to look at things from any point-of-view other than their own. The comment that inspired this piece of wisdom? “All Im gonna say is in the 38 years that I have been alive, I have not seen an ape or monkey or whatever turn into man. If all that was true then why all of a sudden they quit turning to man?” Great argument! After all, in my 34 years on this planet I have not seen a single United States president in person, which means they’re probably just holograms on the TV.
Don’t Even Address the Issue at Hand Before Attacking Your Opponent! Seriously, why bother defending your own position when you could simply make fun of the people who don’t think exactly like you do? The inspirational comment for this one? “Wow they dug until they found one thing he may have been wrong about. Cult members rejoice and give twice as much to their favorite con artists this week.” Good point! People who disagree with me are members of an easily-duped cult – why didn’t I think of that?
Make Arguments That Are Totally Unrelated to the Subject at Hand! In lieu of describing this idea, I’m just going to go ahead and give you the comment I’m referring to: “Darwin was wrong about a lot of things, including racism.” You’re absolutely right. And furthermore, pillows are unnecessary. China’s currency is seriously undervalued, and sometimes my knee itches and I don’t know why. Have I sufficiently confused the question at hand? If so, then success for me!
Here’s the point. Resolving conflicts takes time, energy, and a mutual respect for the people you disagree with. A successful resolution will almost always result in increased loyalty, a spike in productivity thanks to aligned and mutually agreed-upon goals, and open lines of communication for a faster resolution whenever the next conflict comes up.
But it’s way more fun to ignore all that and just be mean to people. So give it a try! Because if you don’t, then it means you probably disagree with me. And if you disagree with me, then it definitely means you’re a stupidhead. And ugly. And probably a criminal. An ugly, stupid criminal with halitosis and a menial job that a panda bear could just as easily do.