Monday, 14 October 2013

Thought For The Day

“In my humble opinion” is one of the most passive-aggressive things anyone can say. There’s this old saying that if one says one has humility, immediately one doesn’t. Obviously, one can simply write “in my opinion.” By injecting the word “humble” into it, one is basically saying, “See, my opinion is humble, so obviously yours isn’t. Also by claiming my opinion is humble, I’ve just hijacked the moral ground from you, so you’re stranded. If you attack my opinion, you’re attacking someone who’s self-consciously humble, beneath your exalted self. If you don’t contradict me, you let my contentions gain legitimacy by default.”

As for me, my opinion is my opinion. There’s nothing humble about it, and I don’t see any reason why there should be. 


  1. It always struck me as sort of a snarky thing to say.

  2. It is an empty phrase of the English language I learned when I communicated with English native speakers. I thought it is a phrase of polite humility and picked it up to use it myself, as well. We don't have such a phrase in German, we say 'meine Meinung', my opinion. Of course you are right Bill, about the passive-aggressive content. I won't use it again.

  3. Bill,
    Excellent, and yes, I agree with you on this.
    As for myself, I at times use the following, just to BE snarky. I use; "in my (not so very) humble opinion", but only very selectively and not very often. Again, I use to BE snark and nothing else. Yeah, I AM that sort of nasty at times. Hey, what do you expect? I was a US Marine and am a veteran of the imperial war in Vietnam after all. Yes, that last was a bit of snark also, but mostly sarcasm, or an attempt at it.

  4. Excellent, Bill! Your explanation is very correct. Perhaps many people use 'in my humble opinion' as a courtesy, but as you clearly wrote, the 'humble' turns out 'arrogant'.

  5. perfect an opinion is an opinion

  6. In my humble opinion, U have nailed it ;)


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