Political / religious issues are often incredibly complex, and we ought to be careful to avoid oversimplifying matters. People who are strongly for or against some political / religious view generally neglect the fact that their entire argument rests on many assumptions whose factuality (or necessity) they have not even begun to examine. I.e. there are assumptions that may not be true, and often those assumptions are not even necessary, so that going without those assumptions would open up their minds to more ways of thinking about the issue.
But human beings dislike feeling powerless, and so when faced with issues that are originally complex and beyond their ability to comprehend, they make all kinds of convenient assumptions until the original issue is simplified to a level at which they feel they can understand. It so happens that people have different assumptions, and so come to different conclusions … And when an objective test* does not exist to determine whether any conclusion is true, then people are “free” to go on thinking that they are right, even though in all likelihood they are wrong, because when their conclusion relies on so many different assumptions, just one wrong assumption is enough to invalidate their entire argument.
* Objective test being defined as a test that all parties can agree upon, because then the test would be independent of their arbitrary assumptions.
Intelligent people often hold sharply differing political / religious views because there often does not exist an objective test for such issues. They take for granted the many assumptions required to support their argument, while there is no objective mechanism available to prove any of them wrong.
For example, Christians predominantly regard the Bible as a source of 100% truth. But consider this: Jesus and disciples said and did many things (let’s call these”A”). Different people later wrote about “A”, resulting in written documents B, C, and D. Many years later, people tried to compile a complete set of B,C, and D that they deemed trustworthy, but they did not completely agree on what B, C, and D should be. Some people put it to a vote and accepted the result. They called it the “Bible”. Some people disagreed, and decided on their own set of B, C, and D, so they have a different “Bible”. Many years later, people invented the idea that their “Bible” is 100% true.
So, we face the following problems:
(1) What does the Bible being 100% true even mean? That everyone who reads it will obtain 100% truth? When people read it differently, who is the one reading it correctly?
(2) Which version of the Bible is the real Bible?
(3) Why should we insist on the idea that nothing went wrong in the process of getting from A to <B, C, and D>, and then later to having something called the Bible?
(4) Why should we insist that there exists a collection of documents that are somehow 100% true? (Must it be 100% true to be useful?)