Sometimes, people are just flat out wrong but they'll still stand their ground, no matter how wrong they are proven to be. It’s as if they seem to think that opinions and facts are interchangeable, or they have dug a hole so deep they couldn’t even climb out of it if they wanted to so the only solution is to keep digging. There is no upside to arguing with these people, as these stories from Reddit show. You can’t fix stupid and you shouldn’t argue with stupid, so don’t waste your time.
1. Beat the Heat
This guy once told me he was speeding on his motorcycle one night in the freezing cold and was almost caught by a police helicopter with an infrared camera. He said he ditched the copter by taking his coat off and cooling his body down to ambient temperature so the infrared camera couldn't see him. I ignored the fact that he wouldn’t survive if his body temperature dropped that much and simply asked why they couldn't pick up the heat from the engine—his answer left me absolutely stunned.
He said infrared cameras only pick up heat from organic sources. At this point, I decided against even trying to argue any of the ridiculous points he was trying to make and just noped right out of the conversation.
2. Fast and Furious and Clueless
"You should always drive as fast as possible to get the best MPG. Driving twice as fast cuts your travel time in half and cuts your gas usage in half as well." I always knew she liked driving fast. When I let her borrow my car, I told her to slow down a bit and her response was, "Sure! No problem. I'm not the one paying for gas."
That started the explanation about how "stopped cars with the engine running use gas" and "cars driving fast use gas" so you may as well "drive fast and stop using gas sooner." After about an hour, I had to give up.
3. Science 101
My friend didn’t believe me when I told him that there is oxygen in water. He told me to stick my head in the ocean, and if I can breathe he will believe me. I tried explaining that the O in H2O stands for oxygen, but he had never heard of the term H2O. I mean, he's never been the sharpest tool in the shed, or the brightest light on the Christmas tree, but come on.
Life will be hard for that guy.
4. Geography Lesson
A guy I knew in high school insisted Hawaii was in the Gulf of Mexico because that's what it showed on the map. He even opened our textbook to show me and then looked at me like I was an idiot. I just told him to educate everyone he could then.
5. Nicknames Only
I did not get credit in a game of Trivial Pursuit for my guess of King Tutankhamun. The "correct" answer was, you guessed it—King Tut. I was like 13 and we had just done an Egypt study in school. So, I was positive about being correct and pretty proud for knowing it.
6. Reluctantly Right
This happened to me in sixth grade. It was shortly after summer break, and we were going around the room saying where we went and one cool thing we saw during the break. Well, over the summer, I’d gone to see my mom who lived, at the time, near the Sequoias and took us up to them. So I said that I’d seen the largest tree in the world, General Sherman.
There are actually some qualifications to it being the largest, but I wasn’t aware of them at the time. My teacher chimes in to say that’s not a tree. I said that I saw the plaque and that’s what it called the tree. She said I had misunderstood—the tree wasn’t called that, and it was unlikely that the biggest tree in the world was so close to my mom’s house.
Now that really bothered me. It was a very stressful time in my life, I hadn’t seen my mom without court supervision in a long time, and, for whatever reason, that had been one of those watershed moments where it felt like things could get back to normal. So I got adamant and told her it’s in the encyclopedia. She said to go ahead and look.
Thankfully, it was there. But there was still no real triumph, as she just said, “Fine, I guess it is real.” After class, she chastised me for disagreeing with her in front of everyone.
7. Good Luck With That
This guy said that I could touch a black hole because they only targeted stars and planets. I was trying so hard not to laugh.
8. Backward Thinking
In high school, the night before a football game, we would get together and set goals for the game. The defense set the goal of >200 total yards of offense allowed. I corrected the > to a < to make it "less than 200 yards." They disagreed adamantly and kept the greater than symbol. I was tutoring four of them in math at the time.
They ended up hitting their goal—more than 200 yards given up.
9. Selective Hearing
I was trying to ask my neighbors to shut their dogs up at night because we couldn’t sleep. "But my dogs never bark." And yet there they were, barking in the background. I shook my head and walked away.
10. It’s Not That Literal
A guy argued that a baby grand piano was for little children during their earliest piano lessons, saying, "that's why they're called baby grand." I explained that the term "baby grand" simply refers to the smallest size of a grand piano, about 4'5" long. He just insisted that baby grand pianos were for little children, and that's why they're called "baby grand."
11. Turning Lemons Into Limes
I’m a bartender. When I put a drink up to be run to a table in the restaurant the servers have to put a garnish on it depending on the drink. I see a new guy standing there staring at the lemons. I ask him what the deal is and he responds, “these limes aren’t ripe yet.” I try to explain that’s not how that works and the guy tells me I don’t have to be a jerk.
Suffice to say, we’ve lowered our standards for servers lately.
12. Where’s MythBusters When You Need Them
A guy I used to work with believed that germs were a myth. He thought "bad air" was what made you sick. We worked in a meat department. Luckily, he would wash his hands and keep stuff clean, but his logic was that dirty things make bad air. I tried so hard to convince him germs were real, to the point where I would print off literature of various educational levels, from kindergarten to college level, but he thought it was all a hoax.
It drove me up a wall. He also believed the moon landing was fake. We got in heated arguments over it, to the point where my boss put a ban on discussing the moon at all.
13. Preventative Measures
I was trying to explain to my roommates that we can’t leave our front door unlocked 24/7, especially when no one is in the apartment and when they’re out and I’m sleeping. I also told them that they should replace the keys they lost. Plus, we’re on a college campus where theft is pretty common and my room was broken into the previous year.
I couldn't believe their response: “We live on a college campus so we’re safe. What good is a locked door going to do if someone comes in with a gun? If something happens, that’s just life.” We went around in circles for 27 minutes. Worst argument ever.
14. Worst Person to Play Scrabble With
Whenever I use words my mother has never heard of and she tells me to correct myself. I now have to actually get Google definitions to show her I'm not speaking nonsense. I used to always lose those arguments because "She's the mom and older, therefore she knows more than me."
15. Sounds Like a Jaden Smith Tweet
I pointed out that his car mirrors were tinted blue—I just thought it was interesting. He got really offended, and when we actually looked at them to prove my point, he said one of the most baffling things I've ever heard: "The mirrors aren't tinted, reality is."
16. One in the Same
I once was innocently commenting about something on the news about the pope when the not very intelligent guy I was dating was like, “Eh! I don’t want to hear about those silly Christians! You can’t trust any of them!” I’m like, ”Umm, you’re Lutheran, aren’t you?” He replied, “Yeah, exactly…that’s why I try to avoid Christians and their rants.”
This led to a 20-minute conversation as I tried to explain to him what a Christian was and that he was one. He didn’t understand or believe me and it turned into a breakup conversation for realizing how dumb he was.
17. Our Clocks Run on Metric Time
When I was working waiting tables they changed scheduling systems and the times printed were in military time. My shift said I started at 10:50, so that is when I showed up—10:50 AM. At the end of my shift, my manager handed me a write up to sign for being late. I refused because I was there at my scheduled time, 10:50 AM.
He then tried to tell me I was supposed to be in at 10:30. This is when I go and grab the paper schedule and point to where it says 10:50, clearly written. At this point, I start to notice that all of the start times were either at the top of an hour—1:00, 13:00, etc—or at the hour and :50. When making the schedule, he thought that :50 in military time was a half-hour and would not listen to me when I explained, as clearly as I could, that it was the hours that changed, not the minutes.
He still put that write up in my file.
18. Facts Over Feelings Part One
They kept insisting that they were entitled to their opinion over something that was a fact. For some reason, telling her that her opinion didn't sway the truth just made her double down. The situation—I mentioned that a certain YouTube personality was gay. I said it as a matter of fact and not to be mean. The guy has mentioned being gay on his channel several times.
This girl got mad and kept denying he was into dudes. This was despite me pointing out that he openly identified as gay. She cited that it was "her opinion" to validate the dude's sexuality on what she wanted to believe. I wanted to slam my head into a desk.
19. Facts Over Feeling Part Two
This happened with my mom on several occasions, with the worst one being when I tried to explain to her how the wifi works. She insisted that it was slow because, "Valkyrja, your computer is always on, and it sucks the data, too." It didn't work on data and she didn't believe me when I told her so. "Valkyrja, you're always playing games."
I play single player games 99% of the time. I didn't know very well how it worked, and I actually don't remember anything at the moment, but back then I actually did some research on the Internet. I also asked my boyfriend, who is a programmer, repairs computers, and is generally more comfortable than me with this kind of stuff, so he could point me to places where I could find the information I needed about it, then I went back to my mom and explained how the wifi worked.
After aggravating me by interrupting and telling me I was wrong while I was trying to explain, she, very infuriatingly so, told me, "Well, can't I have my opinion? I am ENTITLED to have opinions!” I went berserk. I couldn't do it anymore. I just screamed back, "You can’t have an opinion on facts! If this is how it works this is how it works!”
It wasn't the best way to react but she has a knack for making me so irrationally angry that I just reacted like that.
20. Unplugging From This Conversation
My wife and I have a similar conversation almost daily. Why can't I watch Netflix? The Internet connection is down. But the Netflix box says it's connected. It's connected to the Wifi but the Wifi isn't connected to the Internet. But they're the same thing! Umm...I now turn off the router when the Internet connection drops so I don't have this conversation.
21. It’s Called the Past for a Reason
I'll be finishing up my history degree in a few months. I really shouldn't be arguing my subject with people who've never had a reason to pick up a history book, but I was stuck with a buddy of mine for several hours a day for the better part of last year, and we got around to talking about pretty much everything. At one point, for one reason or another, we got to talking about the Comanche Indians.
I mentioned a common misconception, and he countered with a stereotype that he learned in grade school. We went back and forth for a while, and I tried to reference books on the topic, but his response was always to restate the same stereotype and say, "I'm part Cherokee, so I know." Eventually, when he clearly had nothing left to say, he asked the most annoying question possible in that situation: "Yeah, well were you there?"
How do you even respond to that? I definitely wasn't "there," but neither was anyone else alive today, and accepting that argument would pretty much void all study of history. I pretty much gave up. He's not a dumb guy, but history is clearly not his field, and there was no way anything was going to come of the argument.
22. Phantom Running
This was recent—someone who doesn't run tried to tell me that running on a treadmill doesn't count because you can just lift up your legs and that the track does all the work. I tried to explain that while it isn't 100% the same as running outside, your body wants to stay relative to the moving track so yes, you are propelling yourself forward, and many outside runners—myself included!—run on treadmills at some point for training when the weather isn't cooperating.
I'm pretty sure we would be able to tell if we weren't exerting any effort on the treadmill. He said that people who run on treadmills are lazy and we are all wasting our time pretending to work out. Okay buddy.
23. Fast Color
I got into an argument with a guy who swore red cars were faster. His rationale was "because Ferraris are always painted red," which is also not true. At first, I thought he was just messing with me, but no, he really believed it and nothing I could say would change his mind. I finally gave up on arguing with him and told him he was right.
24. Four Wheels Are Better Than Two
Someone was scared of getting a driver’s license because of the danger involved, so they were going to get a motorcycle license instead because it was a safer vehicle to operate. I tried telling them it was more dangerous but they weren't having it.
25. Why Can’t Both Exist
When my friend said that dinosaurs never existed and it was all a conspiracy perpetrated by natural history museums to deny God and make everyone atheists.
26. It Sounds Like He Does
My co-worker believed in the myth that we only use 10% of our brains. I tried everything but there was no getting through to him.
27. Her Thumbs Aren’t Green
While getting a tour of our children's school garden, the teacher was rambling on about the different veggies and stuff they grow. We were walking by these giant sunflowers when the teacher said, “Oh, these are sunflowers, for making popcorn.”
Me: You mean you add them to popcorn? Teacher: Uh. No. Sunflower seeds make popcorn! Me: I'm 100% sure corn kernels are used for making popcorn...hence the name pop-corn. She sighed and moved on, continuing to think I'm a hulking 6'5" Neanderthal. Now we're at the herb section and she points at the thyme and rosemary.
Teacher: This is thyme and rosemary, we use these to make chocolate. Me: What? You add those to chocolate? That has to give it a funky taste. I'm surprised the kids like it. Teacher: No! We don't add it to chocolate. Chocolate is made from them! I gave up questioning her at this point and finished the tour silently contemplating how this woman can zip up her pants in the morning, let alone get a degree and teaching certificate.
28. Doing Their Job for Them
I’m still a little mad about this one. I was in a marketing class and we had a big project to present about why someone should or should not go with a certain marketing strategy. We had group A argue the for side and my group argue the against side. Well, group A went first and they gave every detail of the entire argument, including all of the pros and the cons.
They gave every detail, neither making it look good or bad because they gave both sides of the argument. So, when we went up and presented only the negatives, we got criticized for looking like we didn't know the full picture. But the whole point was to argue why it wouldn't work.
29. Above Her Pay Grade
With my tenth-grade chemistry teacher about my science fair project. I built an electric motor from scratch and tested the longevity of several different types of commutators. The teacher didn't understand it so she gave me a D. I'm still upset about that, well over thirty years later.
30. Can’t Teach an Old Dog New Tricks
Flat earther and Newtonian relativity—when I was still in school, I’d work with my girlfriend’s dad on some weekends for some extra money, and I’d normally be the only college-educated one in a field of grown, blue-collar men. When one of them learned that I was a physics major, he was very eager to prove that my entire education was wrong.
He tried to argue that the earth doesn’t rotate and therefore the earth is flat—still not sure how one even draws that conclusion. His argument was that the duration of a flight going the same distance from east to west should be different than a flight going from west to east because one way you are flying with the rotation and one way you are flying against it.
I tried explaining relativity in the simplest terms possible. He understood throwing a ball when you’re in a moving car or train, or walking in a moving plane. Every possible example I could think of, I’d explain and he’d agree. When we got to a plane taking off being like the ball and the earth rotating being the moving car/train, I just completely lost him every time.
He said it can’t be the same and “the liberals brainwashed me” if I actually believed that.
31. Someone’s a Tad Bit Paranoid
A friend of mine started a really long-lasting and annoying argument when she accused me of hitting on the guy she liked, when in reality he and I were just close friends. She stood by the "girls and guys can't be just friends" theory and ended up pulling four other people into it, but they all sided with me. Yet she still didn't understand, so my friend and I had to stop hanging out for a while because rumors started to spread. It's all fine now, though.
She got together with the guy later on, they broke up after a month and she immediately accused him of cheating with a girl he didn’t even know, and tried to make me confront him. I noped myself out of that pretty fast.
32. In One Ear and Out the Other
I will preface this by saying my wife is not dumb. Anyway, I gave up on trying to get her to not use metal/stainless utensils in non-stick pans after about the fifth argument about it because she is either too ignorant or too stubborn to not do it. So, all of our non-stick pans have a bunch of scratches and gouges in the non-stick coating.
33. Can See It but Won’t Believe It
I tried to convince a flat earther friend that the moon was indeed a sphere that reflects the sun's light. After running logical circles for about two hours, I finally got fed up and offered to get my telescope out and show him with his eyes that the moon is a giant rock and doesn't produce light of its own because his whole argument was, "You can't see it with your eyes so it's not true."
He refused to look through the telescope and claimed that I was attacking his religious and personal beliefs for this.
I once had my wallet stolen and I called to cancel my cards. They first asked me for the CC number and I told her it was stolen. She then told me to look on the card. I was then told if I don't know the card number she couldn't help me. I hung up, called back and got someone that actually helped.
35. Get With the Times
Years ago, I had an account with a cell phone company that made you set up a PIN to access voicemail and other services. When I first made the code, it had to be an eight-digit number. Not sure why, but that's what they did. Sometime later, they adjusted their policies and now PINs had to be between four and six digits. However, I never changed my PIN.
When I called to eventually cancel and transfer my number to a new provider, it took a while for them to understand that my still valid PIN was longer than what their system could handle since it would max out at six numbers. I had no problems checking my voicemail, but talking to a person was impossible because my PIN was too long.
36. This Experiment Seems Fixed
I might be too late to the party, but I'll still share. I lost an argument with my sister over her new association with Amway. She brought in Nutri-vitamin pills and claimed they were better than other brands. To prove this, she dropped her pill and another brand’s pill into water. She claimed that because the Amway pill dissolved in water, it would get dispersed through our body, and since the other brand didn't dissolve it would go straight through our digestive system.
When I brought up stomach acid, she doubled down on the fact that human bodies are 60% water.
37. Medieval Times
"Allah is just another word for God." "No it's not, Allah is Satan worship." "What?" "God be praised, stop talking about Satan!" "I'm leaving." "Run away coward!" This guy I used to work with also believed that vaccines are bad and the Earth is flat. He got fired for being a quick-to-anger idiot, not for his beliefs.
38. Someone Call Bill Nye
My poor brother has a story about this. I should start by saying that both our parents are engineers and were very good about giving truthful, thought-out, and scientific answers to our childhood questions. Unfortunately in grade school, the teachers weren’t the same. One day, he got in a slight argument with another student about "moon boots."
The other child claimed something along the lines of, "The moon has no gravity, therefore astronauts need moon boots to stick to the moon or else they'd fly off." My brother corrected him by saying that there is gravity on the moon. The other child wasn’t having it though and his smugness got to my brother, so he decided to have the teacher weigh in.
He was positive the teacher would side with him and wipe that smirk off the kid's face. He asked the teacher, "Is there gravity on the moon?" She replied, "No, the moon is out in space where there is no gravity" and dismissed him. My brother now has his masters in mechanical engineering and a healthy skepticism of authority figure's opinions.
He is also still upset about what happened that day.
39. Quality Over Quantity
I asked my supervisor in a manufacturing plant why the new hires were not using a bin to catch parts off the line, but were instead pulling them off the line and packing them directly. He had no clue what I was talking about, but he looked into it and later decided that it was more cost-efficient to stand there and hold the part until it came off the line and pack it instead of letting it collect and packing it as needed.
The difference is that if you use the bin, you have time to measure a part, perform the required testing and attend to your line, so that it's less likely to catch fire, without needing a second person to step in to relieve you. The bin effectively replaces your second person. It makes the job a lot easier, and there is no additional cost to anyone in any way. The parts are finished and packaged in the same amount of time, but nobody has to hold the part and wait for it to come off the line.
Unfortunately, my supervisor thinks that if my hands are not busy holding the part, the company is losing money, because lean manufacturing. The customer isn't paying for parts to fall into a bin after all. He makes almost double my salary. That line caught fire today.
40. Nurture Over Nature
My religion teacher said that you shouldn't adopt children because it's against nature. She lives in her own world and nobody in my class could change her mind.
41. I Just Work Here
I used to work at a grocery store that offered both paper and plastic. This lady I'm helping asked for plastic because it was raining, so I bagged in plastic. That should have been it—I never expected the nightmare that was coming. The people behind her came up and asked why I didn't just bag in paper instead because paper is better for the environment. I explained that they are the customer and I have to give the customer what they want.
They said it was still my job to help save the Earth and I should have bagged in paper. I asked if they thought smoking was bad and they said yes. I asked if they would back me up refusing a sale for cigarettes because cigarettes are bad for people. They said no, because they are the customer and it is their choice. I tried to link it back to giving the customer what bags they wanted even if it was bad for the environment.
"But it is still your job to save the planet. You have to bag in paper." I wouldn't unpack their cart as they went at me, so I just stopped responding to the argument and asked if I could help unpack their cart. They stopped asking questions for a moment to load up the belt, and I think that this mess is finally over.
As I am scanning the last few items, they ask if I am vegan. I say no. They ask why not. I tell them their total and ignore the question. They ask again, "Why not? It's bad for women, especially to eat meat, you know." I tell them to have a nice day, and immediately engage the next customer.
42. Leave It to the Professionals
Countless customers when I was fixing cars. One time, I was doing an oil change on a guy's Mercedes 240sl? It was a Mercedes. It was a middle-class car, and he was an older guy, I'd say he was in his late forties. He walked into the back of the shop where I was filling oil and began to yell at me saying that I was putting too much in.
I tried to tell him that this was a big engine and that two liters of oil wasn't enough for any car, let alone the larger V style engine. I just got the boss to deal with him. But that was far from the worst thing I ever had to deal with. My favorite was a Dodge Caravan that got towed into the shop. It wouldn't start or anything. The customer insisted that the battery was "too new" and it "fried the computer" or something.
The second I opened the hood I saw the problem. When he replaced the battery, he didn't know there were plastic caps over the terminals to keep them from shorting on stuff. Once he saw me pull the plastic caps off the battery he became so embarrassed that his wife had to pick up the car—he actually walked out. We would always joke about "the caps" to the customer's wife and we all got a good kick of it.
Moral of the story—if you don’t spend years in a shop or go to school for automotive, don’t try to argue it.
43. Stopped for Cooking to Fast
My coworker thinks that police radar guns work by scanning cars to see how hot their engine is, because the faster you go, the hotter it will be, right? I tried explaining how Doppler radar works, but she remained convinced that she was correct, because, and I quote, "My husband has one of those radar guns and uses it when he's cooking on the grill."
Your husband has an infrared thermometer, you nut.
44. Can’t Burst a Bubble That’s Not There
Not my last argument, but when I was 18, I had a girl try to tell me that all the bakeries in my country were actually owned by one company that was controlled by the government—I lived in Australia. When I pointed out to her that I was doing a bakery apprenticeship at the time and that my family had been in the industry for more than three generations and no less than six members of my extended family owned bakeries, she just looked me in the eyes and said, "Well, I'm sorry to burst your little bubble."
I swear I could see the back of her skull through her eyes as the wind whistled gently between her ears.