Context That Makes Every Difference

On DifferenceThatMakesNoDifference, a "navel-gazing" question is asked. The following comment is deemed off-topic on a page saying that "some differences don't matter", because it claims that we should SeldomAffirmNeverDenyAlwaysDistinguish:

The question highlights the importance of perspective/context. From the perspective of the squirrel, the man did nothing but chase. From the perspective of the tree, or the surrounding park, you could say that the man did walk around the squirrel.

Sometimes people correctly answer both/and to an either/or question. The people who can't comprehend this often get dizzy while the people who can comprehend it run circles around them.

Except when the person has a point, and the people "running circles" around them are intentionally missing it. A person may say, "Basically, you're either pro-life, or pro-choice;" And then other may get all "both/and" on the person. However, the person saying "Basically..," is making a perfectly valid point, and, in general, what they are saying is true, at least in the USA, and talking with normal, everyday people. The other person is making a pre-emptive defence, or trying to avoid the discussion altogether, or something like that.

I would venture that most people CAN and DO comprehend this kind of a distinction. Beware believing that others cannot see subtlety.

There is often implied set of CulturalAssumptions, and if these match up, then the other parties can then recognise subtlety.


See also DifferenceThatMakesaDifference

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