It’s a scene that has been played in many lives. The awkward silence after a debate that got a little too personal. The words just said that are still reverberating off the wall like shrapnel from a recently detonated explosive. The debate started innocently enough. A discussion, which began about illegal whaling, ended with you explaining the self centered and selfish intentions of your fellow debater. What started as rational points and counterpoints escalated into insults and sharp comebacks after people took offence or felt threatened. The search for vindication and a self-defined justice is what builds these damning arguments that are a scourge in our society. They are a manifestation of the prideful and selfish desires that exist in us if left un-purged. When we engage in these kinds of debates we damn ourselves and we don’t move forward until we value progress more than pride.
Arguments like this don’t happen every day, or at least they shouldn’t so why is it important to understand how to effectively diffuse these situations? It is just like the importance of a bomb squad. Just one bomb a year, if big enough, can affect the well being and lives of hundreds of people permanently. Whether on a small scale or a large one: your evening barbeque, your vacation to Mt. Rushmore or just a family dinner can be destroyed by an argument that got out of hand. And even though it may have been a delicious meal or a great vacation up to that point, after such a confrontation nobody is thinking about the food or the former presidents carved into a mountain
A damned argument is an argument that has no real purpose or end. Any benefit that would have been gained through a discussion about a topic has been forfeited to pride. Progress has been damned because the conversation isn’t taking anybody anywhere forward. This happens when two people are no longer discussing a topic and are only trying to “win” the argument.