Since there has been a fair amount of discussion on the editorial page regarding opinions, I would like to offer the following for discussion. Merriam-Webster defines opinion as a view, judgement, or appraisal formed in the mind about a particular matter and a belief stronger than impression and less strong than positive knowledge.

I would offer a further sub-classification of opinion that can be divided into two qualifiers. The first being an informed opinion which I would define as an opinion derived from researching the subject by acquiring information and knowledge of the subject from various resources, preferably reliable, fact-based sources. One can then examine all sides of the subject prior to arriving at an opinion. This would be an informed opinion.

The other class of opinion would be what I would name the uninformed opinion. This would be an opinion solely arrived at by internal bias and prejudices which would be reinforced by only subscribing to sources that reinforce those internal biases and prejudices.

Therefore, when one is expressing an opinion, it is always more productive to state your opinion as an informed opinion full of facts and truth to back it up rather than an uniformed opinion that just spouts misinformation and mistruths. Using an informed opinion to enlighten another person will usually be more successful than an uninformed opinion.

It is unfortunate that, more often than not, the opinions expressed by writers to the editorial page of the Rutland Herald, tend to be of the uninformed type of opinion. And yes, that is my informed opinion.

William Donovan


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