“This is my opinion. You should respect it like I respect yours. It’s not up for debate.”

You have it all wrong. I respect the person, not the opinion. I might listen to my mechanic on why dentists should really be using stainless steel crowns, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to give his opinion as much, if any, weight when compared to my dentist friends. Education and experience is wider these days than in the past; more opportunity for people to become renaissance men or women, but if your opinion is backed by the educational equivalent of something you saw in a movie, I’m not necessarily going to respect your opinion. In fact, I might outright disagree with you, but I’ll do it respectfully.

If your opinion isn’t up for discussion, if you offer it but can’t articulate your reasoning why, then it isn’t an opinion, it’s a dogmatic response to whatever stimuli prompted you to share it in the first place. A lot of memes are like that. So much opinion and no damn knowledge behind it.

This guy writes in very similar ways to how I think. He wrote this about 11 years ago but I think it’s still very relevant. The lines have changed, the definitions of what it means to be liberal and conservative have been moved to favor more extremist views. Hell, right now, “moderate” is a dirty word to many. It isn’t that liberal values have taken over, that our world has somehow gotten worse. It hasn’t. For many, things are better now than they’ve ever been, despite the challenges we face. What has changed is our definitions. We’ve changed what it means to be a conservative in this country.