Don’t Judge

This is something I see a lot of, especially over the most trivial of things. The internet is a particularly common place for it.

Have you ever spoken to someone about tastes, and then silently judged them for those preferences. Maybe it was music, movies, food, etc. that you were talking about, but whatever it was, it doesn’t really matter. The point is more that people are very readily inclined to call something bad if it does not fit their personal tastes. Similarly, they are quick to judge other people for those tastes. If you look at almost any song on Youtube, I can promise you that you will see comments such as these:

“I love this song! So amazing <3″

as well as comments like these:

“The people who like (or dislike) this song obviously have no sense of hearing”

Or other such comments. Then you get the people who are particularly passionate about the song, or whatever else is being discussed, talking about the brilliant lyrics/script, the deep meaning, etc. and then you get other people saying how superficial, simple, discordant, flawed, etc. this song or movie is. You cannot possibly please everyone, but yet people feel the need to tell the world why their opinion is valid, even if no amount of justification is going to make the other person like the item in question.

The Beatles- tolerable.

An example from my own life: I am not much interested in the Pop music you hear on the radio all the time, nor am I really interested in much of the Classic Rock. One particular example that gets me a lot of weird looks, and a lot of criticism, is my dislike of the Beatles (I like a couple of their songs, but on the whole I do not really understand why everyone is as enthralled as they are). Like many other musicians of this time or later, I am not denying their talent, how they revolutionized music, etc. I can respect them, but that does not mean that I should be compelled to like their music as a whole, nor should it mean that other people should look at me as if I have 5 heads when I say that their music, in my opinion, is “okay”.

Twilight's following is very devout in many cases, and this level of devotion can sometimes make people question the persons judgement and the validity of their preferences.Other things in pop-culture have accumulated at least a couple people willing to go to such extremes, if not large followings.

It may sound silly of me to be talking about this, but people actually do this, and some people will avoid associating with someone when they learn what that person likes. We tend to have preconceptions of what kind of person likes that particular thing (e.g. the Twilight series has become associated with teen girls, and for huge fans, also tends to be associated with obsession and delusion. Sci-Fi tends to be associated with “geeks”, girls that like video-games are thought to be awkward or uncool, etc.) All of these preconceptions could be completely ill founded and not at all reflect the personality of the person, but we are quick to place people into easily defined categories and use that as a way to weed out who we want to associate with and who we do not want to.

So please, next time you think about judging someone based on their preferences, or make some snide remark on the internet about someones bad taste, just keep in mind that they may very well think the same of the things you like. It is a two way street, and just because you think they are delusional does not mean that they do not think that you are too. Your interpretations and preferences are no more valid than those of anyone else, so it is better to save yourself and others a lot of hassle and just move on. It really isn’t that big a deal if you like different things, and I am sure there is some commonality there somewhere.

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