When I first came to this fine institution, I was overwhelmed by the caliber of class discussions regarding the Core curriculum and impressed by the richness of the pervading intellectual life on campus. I quickly learned, however, a tendency that some UD students have – the tendency toward cynicism.
As deGrood says, “all too frequently, I notice someone express interest in something (whether it be a work of literature, a piece of music, etc.) only to be immediately denigrated by a mob of peers,” and I too have witnessed such denigration as well as have personally experienced it.
Furthermore, I wholeheartedly agree with deGrood when he says that this type of denigration “is not conducive to an environment that fosters love.” While deGrood mentions how such cynicism can interfere with the fostering of love, I think he does not explicitly mention the root of the cynicism.
My theory of the cause of belittling an opinion or interest is a lack of maturity or a lack of personal security. While I think it is natural to be a little guarded when being exposed to a new idea or a different opinion, it is not beneficial to be defensive or dismissive too quickly.
Rather, it is important to first be open to what someone else says because who knows, he might actually teach you something that you did not know before, even if you may disagree!
As St. Thomas Aquinas says, “We must love them both, those whose opinions we share and those whose opinions we reject. For both have labored in the search for truth and both have helped us in the finding of it.”
– Mary Jones, class of