Written Saturday, 26th February.

“You idiot, what a stupid thing to do!”

Isn’t that much more human and kind and accessible and friendly than finding something offensive and constructing an argument about it to demonstrate that it is offensive and being dogmatic about its motivation?  At least in normal circumstances.  Even then, maybe we need to broaden our understanding of all the things that should carry the label, “normal”.

I just looked at someone I was offended with earlier, and while I believe I understand what they are doing and that it is offensive and I can make all the arguments as to why and how, I just thought, “honestly, what an idiot, what a stupid thing to do”, and the lack of a thesis or essay about it made it far less charged.

I thought about it for a few minutes afterwards.  I decided that, sometimes, being a Christian and therefore not free to call someone stupid or an idiot, in good conscience, can make you far less human and sympathetic in the way you approach people when they are idiots and do stupid things.

Then I thought again.  Where did this restriction come from, the idea that you can’t call someone an idiot?  Is it Christian?  While it is true that Jesus said if you call your brother a fool you will be in danger of hell fire, the Old Testament talks a lot about fools, especially in the Book of Proverbs, and there is a parable about the man who built bigger barns to store his grain and congratulated himself about having plenty stored up, that God said to him, “you fool, this night your soul will be required of you”.  Whatever we might think of that concept of God, even though the Bible says it was Jesus who told the story, perhaps the fact that it is in the Bible should indicate that Bible believing, evangelical Christians, if we don’t already do so, should hold a more liberal view about just calling people stupid when it might be more appropriate and productive than having to construct an argument.  Because some behaviour obviously is stupid, and sometimes the best way to deal with it, in the right kind of relationship where the person can accept and respond to it, is just to say so.

So I’m not sure how I got the idea that you can’t just tell someone they are being an idiot and their behaviour is stupid, in an affectionate, good natured way, and they could just exhale in relief and maybe slightly embarrassed recognition and change it.  maybe someone was censorious with me at some point for doing that, or maybe someone whose opinion I value would be against it.  If so, me, what an idiot, what a stupid thing to do, to take that on board, maybe, and the person who influenced me could well be an idiot, at least over that, also.  Having to construct arguments and theses all the time doesn’t half kill the flow of fondness in relationships, and all the positive change that comes out of that.

It’s just a thought, for normal circumstances.

I think this is a stupid post written by an idiot.

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