What readers most commonly remember about John Stuart Mill’s classic exploration of the liberty of thought and discussion concerns the danger of (i): in the absence of challenge, one’s opinions, even when they are correct, grow weak and flabby. Yet Mill had another reason for encouraging the liberty of thought and discussion: the danger of partiality and incompleteness. Since one’s opinions, even under the best circumstances, tend to (ii), and because opinions opposed to one’s own rarely turn out to be completely (iii), it is crucial to supplement one’s opinions with alternative points of view.
Blank (i): tendentiousness, complacency, fractiousnessBlank (ii): embrace only a portion of the truth, change over time, focus on matters close at handBlank (iii): erroneous, antithetical, immutable
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