Don’t shoot the message

A well-known cliche is “Don’t shoot the messenger.” When someone brings bad news, don’t blame the messengers who brought it.

A related principle is “Don’t shoot the message.” This principle notes that a good idea that comes from an bad source is still a good idea.

A thought experiment:

Some physicians and medical scientists defect to ISIS. They discover a cure for cancer that is extremely inexpensive. In addition, this cure has a 95% 10 year survival rate. The cure is simple to use and very safe. What would you, as a patient, do with a cure that was created by terrorists?

One situation to apply the principle is in religious spheres. The spiritual principles from an incompatible faith community can still deserve a fair hearing.

Perhaps the most obvious way this principle is violated today is in the political arena. If the minority party in the Senate has a good idea, the majority opponents won’t consider it for more than a minute.

If you’re making a decision, don’t shoot the message.

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