The Myopic world of ArmChair Critics

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.-Aristotle

It takes all kinds of people to make this world. Dumb, weird, intelligent, edgy, humorous, annoying, entertaining…what not! And we all have opinions which are as varied as we are. Because each one of us sport an individuality based on our beliefs, experiences, perception, knowledge and deed. We are all unique in our ways and while that is a nice thing, it is often very difficult for some people to accept that there are equally unique people around. Our perception of the ‘reality’ is all dependent on how we perceive and no two persons may perceive it the same way.

Having opinions and beliefs is human and we all do it. Right from childhood we judge our parents, teachers, friends, relatives etc. It is only natural for us to be opinionated. But all opinions need not mean the same and that’s where the problem arises. While we are equipped with large “intelligent” brains to make those, some lack large hearts to accommodate the opinions of others. You need not agree with them, but respecting and agreeing to disagree like mature adults is enough but often missing. From actors to cricketers to leaders, we have our own favorites. But people’s idea of elevating their favorites seems to be poking fun at others’ favorites as if that will somehow seem like a convincing argument. Well, flash news: IT IS NOT.

I have been observing this right from my childhood. In movies, you like A, and B is A’s tough competitor. How do you profess your undying love for your favorite? Simple! Forward some stupid jokes on B, some distasteful emails with the horribly photoshop’d B’s pictures.  When I asked some of my friends why they do this, they replied that I should be able be able to take it in a lighter vein and that everybody does it. Excuse me, but ‘everybody does it’ doesn’t seem like a good enough excuse for me. Thank you! How would you like it if your own pictures were circulated like this? Would you still have your sense of humor intact? I believe not.

This was pretty evident in the recently concluded cricket World cup. When the team loses, the so-called “cricket-lovers” erupt and bash up everyone but their favorites. But when it wins, the laurels are just for their “favorites”. In that cricket season, I read several disturbing pieces in newspapers and magazines written by people rubbishing players of great virtue. I have no idea whether these “so-called” cricket lovers have played even in a local match to understand the actual dynamics of team-work, but they had so many opinions and insults to dish out about anyone and everyone. These great people sit in the comfort of their homes and are reverently called the ‘arm-chair critics’. They’ll discount every achievement of anyone who is not their favorite and talk about them in such a logic-defying fashion that you can’t do anything but be amused at their ignorance.

Welcome, dear ArmChair Critics. Its people like you that make me hope for ‘2012’.

Nandana Nallapu

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