It is my opinion that opinion is opinion, especially when it is already categorized as opinion.
I was told by a kind and well meaning editor of a publication (which is gracious enough to regularly publicize my political opinion pieces) that it is necessary to support my less than popular opinions with backup reference material. I would have to assume then, that in this view, popular opinions don’t need to be backed up, just because they are accepted.
After all, I never received an objection to my lack of backup material until I expressed some opinions viewed by some as “conspiracy theories”. In an opinion piece I stated that evidence exists indicating that Sandy Hook was a hoax, that the Boston Marathon bombing was at least partially faked, that 9/11 was an inside job, and that mountains of substantiating material can be found online to support all of these these views.
Anyone who wants to substantiate those views need only do one quick Google or YouTube search to come up with page upon page of well researched material supporting the truth of such claims.In other opinion pieces, I have written about more generally accepted conservative points of view. No supporting references were ever requested. Objectionable to liberals, pro-constitution opinion is quite palatable to conservatives in general. But if you try to challenge the status quo with an opinion contrary to GOP platforms, you suddenly are expected to present reference material.
Popularity does not establish truth. Only truth can do that.
Exactly how does one draw a line separating extraordinary opinion from ordinary opinion? What makes any opinion extraordinary, and why does opinion which one observer may perceive as extraordinary beg backup, while a more commonly believed opinion needs none? After all, both are nothing more than opinions.
If the answer is that backup material is intended to establish a position of truth, then it’s just as logical to expect popular opinions also to be backed up with its own supporting evidence. The fact that an opinion is commonly believed is independent of its truth or untruth.
Majority opinion does not establish truth. It only establishes popularity, and out of the norm points of view are never going to win popularity contests. In fact, truth itself is often very unpopular. Who can decide that any opinion is out of line when it’s just too easy to do a Google search and find two to three pages of supporting evidence on the side of whatever opinion you want to support?
Because the majority of the public believes the propaganda about Sandy Hook and the Boston bombings does not mean that statements which disagree with the official story need more backup than the commonly believed story need. I believe that if a reader disagrees with my position, they will probably dismiss my opinion as invalid and just move on, regardless of the backup material I’ve chosen. After all, we all tend to choose backup material that suits our own propositions anyway.Perhaps I’m out of line, but I believe that an unpopular opinion that falls outside of accepted standards of perception is no less valid than is one that everyone feels warm and fuzzy about, and that it therefore begs no more support than does the more popular opinion.
So, I’m only going to present backup material when I feel like it, and on;y when the backup material us something I like…….Well, okay, I’ll make exceptions and sacrifice the strength of my point in exchange for a little more publicity….if I really have to. In this case, I did.
And I don’t like that I had to do it.I just had to vent. It’s not easy going against the grain.