Barbershop Conversations and a Young Man

As a youngster, I always dreaded going to the barbershop. Didn’t mind getting a haircut, I just didn’t understand how a group of old men could discuss all the boring things they chose to talk about. As I grew older, I came to understand, that even though these men hardly ever agreed on anything they always allowed each other to have their own opinion. In today’s society this is no longer tolerated. I have seen heated conversations on a wide degree of subjects, but have never heard a single person claim they were being bullied because another didn’t agree with them. As I grew older I developed a special appreciation for when to bring up my opinion in a conversation and when to keep out of a conversation. If I introduce my opinion into a conversation, I do not get mad when another person disagrees with me, I believe the person with the differing opinion has as much of a right to their opinion as I have to mine. No need for lawyers, no need for hurt feelings, no need for calling for someones head on a platter. Each person has a right to his or her opinion.

The ability to be tolerant of another persons differing opinion seems lost. The ability to base an argument with fact is no longer in vogue. The ability of the media to actually “report” and not inject opinion seems gone. The moral compass of this nation is spinning out of control. WE as Like Minded Citizens need to get off our rear and start teaching this generation that it is okay to agree to disagree. The ability to take someones differing opinion and learn from it is a lost art. In order to learn we must first LISTEN, not hear what is being said but truly LISTEN. In order to LISTEN we must first shut our mouth. In order to shut your mouth you must first be willing LEARN. As a youngster growing up and going to the barbershop I can remember there always being the one or two gentlemen who would never enter into the conversation of the moment. I realized later they were the smartest ones in the room. They did not feel the need to inject their opinion but you can bet they listened and learned.

Today everyone has an opinion, does not matter if their opinion is based on anything factual as long as they have an opinion.  Today we have “REALITY TV” to be our moral compass. Today we have intolerance, lies,deceit, corrupt leadership, and a broken divided society. The need for PARENTS is greater than ever. Far to many people have allowed society to raise and teach their children instead of raising their children to think for themselves. It does not “Take a Village” to raise a child it takes a PARENT. Our children are the HOPE and the FUTURE of this country not the current “REALITY TV” star or whatever society tries to say is important at the moment. We must be sure we teach the ability to listen, learn, formulate an opinion based on what is learned. We must teach understanding that others may not agree with your opinion. Disagreeing is not a problem intolerance to another persons differing opinion is a problem. And when you ask a person their opinion and get upset if their opinion differs from yours what does that make you?