Writing Objectively about Controversial Issues
Controversial issues are those topics that provoke strong emotional biases in individuals who hold definite opinions about these topics. Issues such as religion, politics, experimental branches of medical science and questions concerning morality will inevitably generate heated and sometimes painful discussions that often deteriorate into a free-for-all devoid of rationality or objectivity.
Even the best ghostwriter may experience difficulty writing objectively about controversial issues, especially when the writer carries an unwavering opinion about the subject. Objective writing means consciously omitting subjective words or phrases such as “I think,” “it is wrong” or “ignorance” and including as many substantiated facts as possible in the article. In addition, the neutrality of the writer’s position should be unequivocal to readers so that it does not seem to readers that that their belief system is being deliberately targeted and attacked.
Tips for Writing Neutral Content about Controversial Topics
Unless a writer has been asked to write an article slanted towards a specific viewpoint about a touchy subject, the best ghostwriter will follow these tips when creating contentious content.
Spend several hours researching all perspectives surrounding the topic so that you gain a thorough understanding of the topic’s historical evolution in regards to where it stands today. For example, the issue of divorce is not nearly as controversial as it was 100 years ago because it is no longer seen as “immoral.” However, it is still being debated today in regards to its impact on the psychological and sociological problems affecting children of divorced parents.
Staying neutral by just reporting facts, statistics and citing material from respected sources will not only facilitate writing objectively but will also broaden your reader base as well. Writing factually about a controversial issue also means devoting equal time to perspectives that are primary to the core concept of the issue. If you are writing about theories regarding the birth of the universe, include philosophical, religious and scientific theories to satisfy the belief system of everyone who reads the article.
If you don’t think you can write neutrally about a controversial topic or have at least tried and realize halfway through that you can’t do it, don’t spend time completing the article when you know it is not what your client wants. Strong emotions are part of what makes us human and sometimes they simply cannot be denied.
UFOs, Probability and the Art of Thinking Objectively
As a skeptic who demands empirical proof, I find it difficult to write objectively about the possible existence of extraterrestrial life or the potential for a conspiracy theory to be true. When faced with such an assignment, I discovered that keeping the law of probability in mind helps curb the urge to flatly denounce another person’s belief system.
In all realms of scientific study, the law of probability simply states that given the infinite passing of time, the possibility of something happening—no matter how improbable or fantastic it seems—actually does exist. It is a law related to quantum physics and the randomness of molecular activity, but I apply it when writing articles that I consider “far out.” Accepting that the the idea of “nothing is impossible” leans more towards fact than opinion due to time being apparently limitless, writers who must craft objective content about a highly subjective topic may find it easier write for everyone interested in the topic and not just a select few.
Kimberly M is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.