no. (roses_rejoice) wrote,


I really hate arguing with people.

I suppose that statement sounds weird considering what I do for a living, but legal argument takes a specific rational and logical form, almost like an art form, so it's dissimilar to most personal arguments, and also (at least on the level I deal with it) more intelligent than two ordinary people disagreeing - kind of like black belt karate as opposed to a barroom brawl. It's interesting to see how experienced lawyers will rarely use emotional arguments on each other because they know it just doesn't wash. Plus, I usually don't get emotionally involved with my legal arguments. There are activists and emo lawyers out there who get all emotionally wrapped up in what they do, but as I have stated before, that's not how I practice law, or any job, and in addition I work primarily in less emotionally charged areas of the law. (Except to the extent that Winning or Getting Big $$ For You and Your Client can become an emotional issue, which is still not quite the same thing as fighting for civil rights or defending battered women.)

Incidentally, for those people who think they have highly developed rational and logical sensibilities blahblah and can argue just like a lawyer, I'm here to tell you that unless you have had a ton of debate or were raised by lawyers, you probably can't. Although some folks are more naturally gifted in that regard than others.

But back to the issue at hand. I don't enjoy argument from a personal standpoint. If my mind is made up, you're almost never going to change it by arguing at me. If you present your side of the matter in a rational and logical way and leave it at that without pushing the issue I *might* think about it and get back to you later and say hey, you know I thought about it and you were right. Similarly, I expect you to respect my side of things and, when I lay out how I think and feel, not respond with loaded name-calling or snippy suggestions that I am stupid or a blunt, "You're wrong". You're not John McLaughlin and I'm not wrong. You are, however, a jerk if you respond to me like that, and I probably don't want to waste my time on you further.

There are people in this world who seem to have a need to "Win" every disagreement that comes up, often by making loaded emotional statements like calling names or referring to highly personal areas. When I meet someone like that I usually think they are terribly insecure. If they continue in the behavior more than once I usually think that in addition to being insecure, they are also an immature pain in the butt, and I avoid them in the future. I don't care how smart they think they are, or how smart they actually are, or how good they are in their field of expertise, or how good their school was (although, interestingly enough, people from places like Yale don't usually act this way because they quite simply feel secure enough that they don't HAVE to, but there is an exception to every rule). They still go in the Jerk Bin and two or three incidents will ensure that they stay there permanently. It's a shame because some of these folks share my interests and I might be interested in them as people if they just didn't have to fence with me all the time, but if they're that kind of person they probably weren't interested in being friendly anyway. *shrug*

Life is too short to argue. I'd rather make jokes and have fun and save the arguing for when someone will pay me to do it right against a worthy adversary. I don't have energy to waste against some doof in their teens or early 20s who just decided to get all fired up about something to make themselves feel more important in life. Or worse yet, because they don't Have a life, and all they have is an argument.
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