@BBCNews I’m strong-minded,you’re a bigot, he’s a fascist…. “shut-up” words

Nick Clegg is correct: Anyone, opposed to gay’s marrying, is a bigot. However, so is Nick Clegg.

If you hold an opinion, which you are not prepared to change and which is not based on fact, then you are a bigot. (stating your opinion as being fact is also bigotry).

The problem is that calling someone a bigot is considered to be an insult and a winning argument.

Often, the only way of refuting such a charge is by accepting the other person’s bigotted view, despite your own convictions.

Unless your own view is based on irrefutable and demonstrable fact, then calling someone else a bigot is merely hectoring and shows that you have effectively admitted that you can’t support your own viewpoint.

There is a lot of this sort of argument based on “shut-up” words. Words such as Homophobic, islamophobic, racist and so forth are all used as “shut-up” words.

A Christian can be “accused” of being Islamophobic and therefore having no right for his views to be heard.

There is no equivalent word.

You could accuse a Muslim of being Christianophobic but people would laugh, because that has not achieved acceptance as a a “shut-up” word.

It’s time that these semantically loaded words were recognised for what they are.

They are “shut-up” words, or words of surrender, meaning “I can’t justify my arguments, so I’m going to give you the social equivalent of a kick in the groin”

Next time, someone uses a “shut-up” word you should claim victory and denounce them for resorting to a “shut-up” word.

 

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