Cracked Columnists

The 4 Most Useless Pieces of Advice Everyone Believes

#2. "You're Entitled to Your Opinion"

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Being entitled to something is saying you have a right or claim to it. There is justice in you having this thing. And what could denigrate that idea more than someone being entitled to a chucklefuck stupid opinion?

The modern world is rife with people convinced that their opinions are important and valid when, sadly, that just isn't true. For any opinion to be valid and important, it needs to be informed, and good God do few people aspire to that. For evidence of this, please refer to people who are "not racist but raised to believe you stay with your own kind." That's their opinion. Other people have an opinion that gays shouldn't get married. That the Earth is 6,000 years old. That climate change doesn't exist. That women who lead you on deserve to be raped. These opinions are not informed. There is no logic behind them, no foundation on which to base them. They're fucktarded.

I'm not sure when people began to believe that any opinion was above reproach, or that the idea that someone's opinion could be made fun of is anathema, but we need to cut that shit out, and pretty quick. Here's a fun video that's been causing some controversy lately -- it's Suey Park, the woman who started the Cancel Colbert hashtag, being interview by HuffPo's Josh Zepps.

For those who missed it, Stephen Colbert used a racist joke as a satirical dig at a racist on his show. He did this knowingly, because that's how satire works -- it was offensive in order to draw attention to another offensive and stupid thing. Park is of a mind that this doesn't excuse the racism. Zepps comes right out and calls Park's opinion stupid after she craftily allows her argument to waver incessantly throughout the conversation, possibly due to the hope that her eloquence will mask her contradictions. She goes from claiming that the joke was racist to insisting that white liberals need to do more than just joke if they want to end racism. She claims that white liberals don't really care about ending racism anyway, but rather their entitlement to laugh at things that aren't funny. So basically all white liberals are racists at heart. You may understand such a blanket statement about a certain racial group as racist. But whatever. Point is, when Zepps calls this stupid opinion of hers stupid, she reacts with utter incredulity and shuts down. The idea that someone would not respect her foolishness causes her to basically refuse to take part in the interview (I think that's what "enact the labor" means) and end her zany little tirade.

I've said before that everyone will have an opinion -- that's inevitable -- but you should reserve your opinion until after you have informed yourself on the matter at hand, and you should only respect the opinion of others if it passes that test. If someone asks me my opinion on the slap fight between Martha and Julius in the food court yesterday afternoon, my opinion is going to depend heavily on me knowing just who the hell Martha and Julius are and why they were slap fighting by the Taco Bell to begin with. If I don't know any of those things, then I may as well give you my opinion with a side of pickles up my ass, because neither one is doing you any favors.

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Fresh from my ass, lady.

Saying that people are entitled to their opinion as a way to dismiss stupid opinions only supports the proliferation of those stupid opinions. You wouldn't say that everyone has a right to piss on your shoe, so don't say that they have the metaphorical right to do it in your brain.

#1. "Money Can't Buy Happiness"

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This saying is pretty old, and likely we've all heard it at least once, but probably not from a lot of rich people. It's a lovely sentiment that speaks against greed and materialism, and don't get me wrong, I would not propose that we all be greedy and materialistic scumbags. However, it's worth noting that there is almost nothing in this world that can't be made better with money. If money can't buy happiness, it can accessorize the hell out of it, upgrade it, and add some really sexy accents to it.

I have to assume that the basic idea behind this saying is that things like health and love and friendship are what really matter in the world. But wouldn't you and your family be happier if you had your own go-karts? And being healthy is great, but say you're in peak physical shape and also on a beach in Costa Rica, then backpacking across Europe, then riding an elephant in Thailand.

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"Walk into the club, I'm like, what up, I got a big trunk."

The fact is, money makes things better. We live in a world in which goods and services are readily available in exchange for cash, so no matter how happy you are and how awesome your life is, you can do something more fun and more awesome if you pay for it. And that's not bad. There's nothing wrong with that, but we have this weird self-flagellating attitude about money sometimes and don't want to admit that having access to more than our neighbor means we may be living better, happier lives. Maybe because it flies in the face of some deep-rooted humble nature or a desire for equality that makes us feel bad if we have more than someone else, so we don't ever want to rub it in. Nor should we -- I didn't come here with an article about my awesome gold-encrusted sex swing, but I could have.

Let's not pretend to live in a different world than the real one, however. Being with loved ones is great, and that should be a great source of happiness. But if you can be with friends and family in a bouncy castle while you drink champagne and Slayer plays a live concert for you, do that shit. Don't deny yourself happiness when you can afford it.

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Felix Clay

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