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  • Category: Miscellaneous

    Expressing Opinions on Sensitive Topics


    Would you take a neutral stand or voice your opinion freely on a sensitive topic? Mention your stand and why you would support that stand.



    When you are asked about any sensitive topic, is it better to be neutral or frankly express what you believe in?

    Should we keep in our mind not to offend people and please them by saying what they want to hear from us or should we give hypothetical and diplomatic replies? How have you managed to express your opinion even when it might have offended the hearer?

    Would love to hear your experiences and advice. If you could cite examples and how you tackled it that would give us a better insight.
  • #607847
    Although I work in a pure bureaucratic set-up, my opinion is never bureaucratic. I always write whatever I feel. As a result I am regularly punished (by Editors) and heckled (by some Members). But I am undeterred.
    Caution: Explosive. Handle with care.

  • #607848
    If I talk about my experience with example, many will get digestion problem. So, I let other to think about me rather than I myself say about it.

  • #607851
    There is a saying in Telugu. Don't get pained. Don't pain others. Who moves without paining others and without getting pained is really a correct person. If you say something which is not liked by others they will get pained. They will try to see that you are also pained. Why all this. Keep mum and see that everybody will be happy.
    Lord Krishna is the diplomatic person and we can learn many things from him. The way he has conducted the Pandavas in Mahabharata is exemplary. He inspires people with his words and make them to work.
    Duryodhana went to Krishna for his help. But Krishna wanted to help Pandavas. So even though he has seen Duryodhana coming, he pretended as if he is sleeping and got up only after Arjuna arrived in the seen and sat near his feet. With his words he made Arjuna to select him and the remaining will go to Kauravas. A true diplomat.

    drrao
    always confident

  • #607852
    Dr. Rao, your Krishna example does not go along with this thread. The Lord was both destroyer and clever. He didn't do anything directly in Mahbharata war but help Pandava to do it. However, there was exception, it was Krishna who killed many Asura, including his own MAMA Kansha. In Mahabharata, he killed Shishupal with his Sudarshana. Who will forget when he ran to kill Bhishma, though he promised that he will not use his weapon in the war.

  • #607856
    There is no harm if one writes something on the sensitive issues or writes in response to sensitive issues.

    A writer will always give his opinion whether it is agreed or accepted or not by others. There are writers whose books are banned by Govt but they do not change their writings. During British regime in India many books by renowned authors like Guru Datt, Aacharya Chatursen and Jainendra Kumar were banned but they continued their writings with more vigour.

    Knowledge is power.

  • #607867
    We have to be very clear about our role and responsibility and even eligibility.

    If we have the role of an advisor or attorney, then it is our duty and responsibility to give the right opinion and advice. If our advice is not proper the principal may cause or land in problems.

    However if we are not concerned or connected with a controversial issue, then it is better not to give any opinion. In all other situations where we are aware of the issues thoroughly and are convinced that some law or tradition is violated then if we are also part of that in some way, we should express our opinion strongly and convincingly.Our aim should be resolving the issue and bringing back order and right system. We need not bother if it is accepted or criticised.
    However even then we should not consciously cause hurt or ill fame to any of the side concerned. Our opinion should consider only what is right and what is wrong. Justice can be done only that way. It is not possible to please both sides in every issue. Then that becomes escapism.

    Our real confusion comes when the rival sides are our close people and we have attachment and affection to them. Then we have to use diplomacy, but ensure that the right is protected. (Diplomatically one has to take the role of a husband who is approached by his wife and his mother in their argument) One cannot antagonise either side, but has to find a solution. Experience and patience has to be used in such situations.

    However we should not poke our nose into everything around us also.

  • #607870
    In my opinion, one should not be so specific or should not be so stubborn to his/her principles. As we all know a wonderful proverb: A stitch in time saves nine can be applied depending on the situation; it may be diplomatic or neutral, to win the situation is the most important.

    Author is asking to share the moments / experiences of such nature. But I feel it would have been better if the author herself illustrated a moment of such kind so that others can co-relate and contribute.

  • #607872
    Everyone should have the right and liberty to comment on each and every thread posted in the forum. However, as far as sensitive topics are concerned, one should always use his/her prudence to judge and decide whether it is desirable to post comments or not.
    I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep.

  • #607877
    With response to #607870, right now though many sensitive issues are going on let's take for example Ram Rahim's case which took place a few weeks back, even now he has many supporters. There are still people who respect him despite the verdict, they get so offended when people speak against him.

    In the above scenario, no point in being neutral. This is just an example, not to trigger a discussion on Ram Rahim.

    I do remember reading somewhere that being neutral doesn't help anyone it, many people take the stand of being neutral for the sake of helping the victim or may be in the fear of being targeted.

    Does it really help taking a neutral stand on the sensitive issue so as not to trigger the wrath of the people? Because I do feel that we should take a stand on things that we believe and our beliefs are proven we should accept it gracefully.

    Sometimes it could be in your workplace as well some circumstances demands you to reply diplomatically without inviting the wrath of your stakeholders. How do we deal with that? Like this much more situations.

  • #607892
    Ha ha! What a topic, any reply of mine can be called sensitive or in-sensitive. Who's greater mother or wife? Which religion is better? In day to day life we are faced with such situations and sub-consciously live with it one way or other. Perhaps here the key is not the question itself but the context, people concerned and the impact of the answer. For example many kids don't like maths and chemistry but quietly sit thorough the class why? to avoid getting into trouble with teachers and parents. Many multinational companies claim that they support a clean environment but just look at the number of individual cabs dropping their staff, it would be mind boggling why? That's the world they live in.
    So, our views on sensitive issues however good it feels to us, needs to be uttered cautiously because its impact can be far reaching. Take for instance, recently the software company wherein one man apparently spoke his mind and crores of rupees were lost in a single day at the stockmarket. As children we all are taught 'not to tell a lie' but the same child grows up to be a doctor and tells a lie to keep the last few days of terminally ill patient happy. On sensitive topics it's better to be diplomatic or careful, we may be called as sitting on the fence, it fine as "many things in life are not black and white BUT varying shades of grey".

  • #607897
    This is the tricky question for many. If you are a great participant and has the in depth knowledge of the subject, then opening up with criticism or even favoring would not matter. But when are arguing against the matter or the subject, then you are likely to be bombarded with severe questions from others to which you must be prepared to answer them. Often we find that due to overwhelming questioning, the person would be forced to withdraw the statement or observation which is nothing but running away from the scene. By remaining neutral you are suppressing your own thoughts which is not good for knowledge empowering for yourself. If you are favoring, that is also not good because those who are against would not spare you. So what I mean to say that you are the better person to judge on the topic and how you proceed would be purely intentional and at your risk.
    K Mohan
    'Idhuvum Kadandhu Pogum "
    Even this challenging situation would ease

  • #607939
    When I enter a discussion, I like to speak my mind, especially when the topic of discussion is sensitive. No mincing of words, just blunt facts, as they are – that is how I address such issues. It is difficult for someone with a logical mind, to not speak up. I do not even attempt to stay neutral. My view is that if I have an opinion, on an issue, and I choose to remain neutral just so I do not hurt people, then my participation in the discussion is a farce. I rather stay out of such discussions where I am expected to remain neutral than participate in the whole sham. I do not look for brownie points.

    I realise that many people do not like me for the way I voice my opinion, but that does not deter me from speaking in favour of things I support or against things that I feel are wrong. Stand by the truth is my philosophy.

    At least people know what to expect from me. In my opinion, my approach is better than those who give sugar coated responses, because you really do not know what is going on in their head.

    "A love affair with knowledge will never end in heartbreak" - Michael Garrett Marino


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