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Both Sides Have a Point

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Avram: [gestures at Perchik and Mordcha] He's right, and he's right? They can't both be right.
Tevye: You know... you are also right.

Alice is faced with two different opinions: Bob strongly believes in one thing, and Charlie in another. The easiest choice would be to simply pick a side— decide that Bob is right or that Charlie is right. But Alice won't do that. The second easiest choice would be to simply remain neutral and urge them to Agree to Disagree. But Alice won't do that either. And she will neither pretend that the two opposing views are actually the same thing, nor conclude that it's merely a matter of perspective. Finally, she will not engage in some extreme mental acrobatics, simultaneously but separately agreeing with both opposing views.


All that is left for her, then, is something much harder: to try her best to see both sides fairly, and value the merits of each side's arguments. In fiction, it can serve to enrich the morality of the setting and avert Black-and-White Morality. In Real Life, this process is the founding idea behind democratic and consensus systems, and also the principle behind most journalism.

Compare What Is Evil?, where a villain tries to invoke this to challenge their status as a villain to begin with, with varying possible degrees of justification and success (depending mostly on whether the work's approach to morality is more Black and White or rather Grey and Gray). Compare also The Horseshoe Effect, for those strange cases in which both sides actually have the same point, despite being ostensibly opposed to one another. Contrast Culture Justifies Anything, where it's very likely that at least one side does in fact not have any valid point. Not to be confused with Double Weapon, where both sides of your weapon have a point. Compare Grey-and-Gray Morality, as well as Rousseau Was Right and Good vs. Good. Characters stuck in this situation may decide to Take a Third Option. If only one side is portrayed as valid in-story but the other also has one in practice, that's Strawman Has a Point. Beware of falling into the Golden Mean Fallacy, where a compromise is reached, but one side is flat-out wrong, and has no valid point after all.



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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Karakuridouji Ultimo, the protagonist Yamato learns he is the cause of an apocalypse in the near future. Yamato chooses to avert this by finding every person in the world who would be involved in the event and understanding their points of view so that he can choose the best possible action once the time comes.
  • In Princess Mononoke every character has a reasonable explanation and motivation for their actions. San is harsh and violent - but only wants to protect her home, family and the natural world. Eboshi wants to kill the god of the forest - but is a benevolent leader, good to her people and kind to lepers and you can fully see why her people are willing to die for her. The protagonist Ashitaka is completely neutral and genuinely wants the best for everyone. Even if the consequences of their choices are ultimately negative, you can see why they did it.
  • Bleach: The Shinigami and Quincies have warred for a thousand years, partly because Quincies destroy Hollow souls as punishment for the killing of humans while Shinigami insist on cleansing Hollow souls back into the reincarnation cycle. Quincies refuse to accept their actions threaten existence itself while Shinigami refuse to accept they're overwhelmed by Hollow numbers and need help. Members of both sides have observed that war means both sides are justified and both sides are evil. Complicating matters is the true origin of the war, known only to a very few on both sides, which centers around the mysterious connection between the Quincy King and the Shinigami Soul King both of whom may not be what they seem.
  • Legend of Galactic Heroes is about this between the cast of the The Empire and The Federation, centered around Yang Wen-li and Reinhard von Lohengramm. The former prefers democracy since leadership can be voted out by consent of the people, who aren't forced with a choice between obedience and execution. The latter favors efficiency and if the right ruler is in place, society's well-being can exceed any democracy.
    • Similarly is the argument with Rudolph von Goldenbaum, the founder of the Galactic Empire. As an Expy of Hitler, Rudolph is loathed by the Alliance as a symbol of tyranny for regulating the most basic of freedoms and purging diverse customs. On the other hand, the member of the Empire find his actions Necessarily Evil since the precursor nation of the Galactic Republic was in a far worse state, plagued not only by political corruption but also rotten-to-the-core, morally-decaying society.
  • Happen more than once in Ashita no Joe:
    • When Danpei asks to be reinstated as a boxing coach, the Japan Boxing Commission refuses to verify if he can do the job and treats him like crap. Danpei, however, admits that, after being barred for his alcoholism, mistreating his boxers, getting into fights with the opponents of his boxers, the referees and the public and assaulting a JBC official when they suspended him, they had all the reasons to not trust him, especially after his reaction to their refusal was to get drunk, storm the JBC building and assaulting the boxing club presidents that made the JBC up.
    • After Joe accidentally kills Rikiishi in a fight and starts winning his fights with devastating attacks on the torso, the JBC club presidents decide to force him to retire for both not retiring in shame after he killed an opponent and the serious injuries he's inflicting to his opponents. On the other hand, Joe is far more devastated by that event than they suspect, hitting only the torso because he developed an unconscious fear of killing his opponents like he did with Rikiishi and returned to the ring in part because he feels that he owes to Rikiishi to win the championships he would have surely won had he not died.
    • Once he's forced to fight on circus rings, Joe is appalled when the other fighters of the circus reveal they fix their matches, seeing it as an insult to any serious boxer and themselves and a scam to the paying public. The others admit he's right... But every single one of them needs money to pay debts, maintain their family, and other urgent reasons and while they have no skill but boxing they aren't good enough to become professionals (or remain professionals, in one case), and if they don't fix their matches they risk being injured and being forced not to work while they heal.
    • After Joe goes back to the official circuit and becomes famous he develops a feud with the world champion Jose Mendoza, with Joe gaining his enmity with continued insults and shouts, even after being informed that Mendoza cannot stand loudmouths. Joe is furious at Mendoza bragging he defeated Joe's friend Carlos Rivera so hard he forced him to retire for medical reasons. To complicate things further there's the fact Jose is bragging about that because, for a long time, there were rumors he refused to fight him for fear of losing his title and as soon as he won the match Carlos' manager explained Mendoza's easy victory with Joe causing him brain damage in their fight, a damage to his reputation that the world champion just cannot let stand, and Joe, even knowing that, is incensed because he knows he caused Carlos' the brain damage. When it's proved without a doubt that Carlos' manager was wrong and Jose was indeed the one to cause the brain damage, Joe stops provoking him, just concentrating on the imminent title match between the two.
  • Episode 6 of Zombie Land Saga marks a rift forming between Ai and Junko over their conflicting views on how the idol industry should work based on what was normal in their respective times: for Junko, it means putting herself at arm's length from the public so she may present her ideal self that she wants her admirers to strive towards; for Ai, it means forging close relationships with her fans and using their support to propel herself forward. Unfortunately, their mutual inability or refusal to understand each other due to their own deeply rooted issues—Junko's feelings that her efforts were rendered meaningless, and Ai's unwillingness to accept her own premature death—keeps them from seeing eye-to-eye. The trope itself is also discussed when the other girls try convincing them to bury the hatchet.
Ai: I don't see how any of what I said was wrong.
Yugiri: There are plenty of fights that start because both sides have a good point.
  • In the A House Divided situation of Assassination Classroom, both groups of students have a good reason for their choice. The group that wants to save Koro-sensei thinks they can't kill him after all they've been through and should therefore try to save him and the world. The group that wants to still try to kill him is worried about what happens if they cannot find a way to save Koro-sensei and the fact that by killing him they'd be following his own expressed wishes.
  • Kaguya-sama: Love Is War: In the aftermath of Shirogane visiting a sick Kaguya, in which both sides are angry at each other, the narrator observes that from their perspective, each of them has legitimate reasons to be annoyed with the other. Shirogane, despite being forcibly pulled into bed with Kaguya, hadn't done anything untoward to her. As for Kaguya, she doesn't remember what she did while she was sick. Despite this, both Kaguya and Shirogane gradually realize that they've been unfair to the other in their respective conversations with Kashiwagi and Ishigami, even as their conversation partner takes their side.
  • In Accel World, there's the dispute between Haruyuki Arita and Kuroyukihime over whether the former's friend, Chiyuri Kurashima, is actually Cyan Pile, the Burst Linker hunting Kuroyukihime.
    • While Haruyuki is ultimately right that it isn't Chiyuri, Kuroyukihime has legitimate reasons for suspecting Chiyuri, considering that the Burst Linker challenged Kuroyukihime while she was connected to her school's intranet, and Chiyuri goes to Kuroyukihime and Haruyuki's school. It later turns out that the culprit used a backdoor program in Chiyuri's Neurolinker, but since Haruyuki was unable to obtain evidence of the program's existence, Kuroyukihime realizes that he could be lying in order to protect his friend. Kuroyukihime also notices Chiyuri's hostility toward her, and while Haruyuki claims Chiyuri's jealous of their closeness, Kuroyukihime points out that it doesn't make sense, since Chiyuri has a boyfriend.
    • As for Haruyuki, he realizes that Chiyuri isn't very good at video games or lying, so the idea of her secretly being a Burst Linker is ridiculous, especially considering that Cyan Pile is Level 4. Likewise, he realizes that there are other reasons for her hostility toward Kuroyukihime, and he's right that Chiyuri is jealous about Kuroyukihime succeeding in helping him. He also manages to find out that Chiyuri isn't a Burst Linker, even if Kuroyukihime is skeptical of his claims.
  • In Sword Art Online, the Mother's Rosary arc has the dispute between Asuna and her mother Kyouko over whether she should continue attending the SAO Survivors' School. Kyouko stresses the importance of getting a good education, and points out that the school is little more than a way for the government to monitor the teenage survivors of Sword Art Online (which Kirito had noticed earlier, and which Asuna mentally concedes in the light novel). Asuna doesn't deny what her mother is saying, but is happy at her school and has her own vision for the future. In the end, Kyouko relents and lets Asuna stay at the school as long as she keeps her grades up.

    Comic Books 
  • In Kingdom Come, Superman and his crew are right that the anti-heroes have become too bloodthirsty and overzealous, blurring the binary of hero and villain, losing track of concepts like collateral damage and simply not caring about the people not on their power level. But the anti-heroes are also right in their belief that simply beating up supervillains and tossing them in jail is a temporary solution at best and useless at worst because of Joker Immunity and that more violent action is the only counter to the less-restrained villains.
  • In Justice League of America: Tower of Babel, when the rest of the League discover that Batman devised plans to defeat them (in the event of them being brainwashed, possessed, or going evil/insane on their own), the team debate about their response to this discovery; Plastic Man, Aquaman and Wonder Woman regard it as a betrayal from someone they trusted while Kyle Rayner, Wally West and J'onn J'onzz acknowledge that Batman's reasons for coming up with the plans in the first place was valid even if they're angry at him for coming up with the plans in the first place (Superman also voted against Batman's acts, reasoning that Batman could have at least told them the plans existed without compromising their effectiveness).
  • In the X-Men Schism event, which leads to the second volume of Uncanny X-Men and to Wolverine and the X-Men, both Cyclops and Wolverine have valid points:
    • Wolverine is correct that Cyclops' new, militant approach to the mutant race's survival goes against what Xavier intended for the X-Men, and that he seems to have forgotten that the X-Men were supposed to be teachers and educators for mutants. There's a reason practically half of the teaching staff abandons Utopia so as to be able to go back to being teachers, not defenders.
    • However, Cyclops is also correct in his points, and his points arguably have a lot more weight to them. The X-Men are living in a world that is more hostile towards mutants than ever before, and with barely 200 mutants alive on Earth at the present, they need to be able to pull together and make humans see they won't just roll over and die to any bigots who come knocking. It's telling that many of the students choose to remain with Cyclops, pointing out to their Wolverine-siding fellows that A: more students died in the Xavier Institute than have ever died on Utopia, and B: they are living in a world where Fantastic Racism overrules any concept of kids as non-targets in a racial war. As the spokesperson for the Cyclops-loyalists so eloquently puts it, the second a mutant's X-gene activates, they stop being a kid and start being a target for every anti-mutant bigot in a world crawling with them. And if one must be a target, then better to be a target who can shoot back.
    • This can also be used for the initial conflict between Xavier and Magneto. Xavier goes the democratic route, hoping for peace, but the amount of destructive mutants in the world tend to over rule peace talks. Although Magneto does go overboard sometimes (killing innocents, trying to destroy the world, bad stuff) he has a point that a war between mutants and humans was always going to happen. Any time things look like they'll get better, a shady government agency or the sentinels or any human faction will come along and murder a bunch of mutants. Mutants that aren't ready to fight will most surely die. This is one of the reasons he joins Cyclops after Schism.
  • The Transformers: Robots in Disguise: After the Autobots win the war the Decepticons accuse them of being more concerned about keeping the 'cons under control with ID chips than building shelters for the ever-increasing numbers of refugees coming to Cybertron. However the 'cons themselves have been shown to be quite untrustworthy and prone to violence and have engaged in acts such as beating neutrals for fun, attempting to assassinate Bumblebee and when Megatron comes back, they immediately form a mob and try to take the city by force.

    Fan Works 
  • Loved and Lost: While most of the story is devoted to Twilight's dishonored loved ones being punished and forced to own up to their mistakes that contributed to the falling out at the rehearsal as well as the Changeling invasion, Twilight herself has a Jerkass Realization before she reconciles with the others. Twilight admits to having given reason for everypony to believe she was only jealous of "Princess Cadance", while everypony else admits not only to being insensitive to Twilight, but also for being too oblivious to realize that something fishy was going on until it was too late. Moreover, Twilight takes responsibility over falling for Jewelius' manipulations and disowning her loved ones in retaliation, while her loved ones acknowledge that they gave Twilight every reason to doubt them. Everypony chooses to blame only themselves (or in the Mane Five and Spike's case, each other collectively) for their own failings while comforting and assuring each other that none of them was entirely to blame for anything.
  • The Loud House fanfic Lily Visitation has Lori and Leni not liking Carol for being mean to the Louds. However, Carol would have been under Michigan's age of consent when Lynn Sr. had unprotected sex with her (thus resulting in Lily being conceived). Lori and Leni defend their father's actions, when he got away with raping Carol.
  • In "Fanfic/My Ideal Academia" Aizawa lectures Yaoyorozu on her underestimating Shirou simply because her Quirk is more expansive than his, not taking into account he's much more skilled in using what he can create. Yaoyorozu counters that it's kind of hard to plan for someone who can use swords to deflect bullets, which he agrees too.
  • Renegade: Word Of God is that the conflict between the Global Defense Initiative, the Brotherhood of Nod, and the Citadel is a variation of this. No one is really right, but everyone is wrong on certain points, which is what leads to their conflicts.
  • In Event Horizon: Storm of Magic, Robb and Ned Stark have a disagreement over whether The Company™ has improved or worsened the lives of their people. Robb supports The Company™ as their ideas and technology have improved the lives of their people and allowed the North to modernize and industrialize into a modern nation with a well equipped army. Ned counters The Company™'s "help" has caused pollution, and their people's traditions, culture, and values are being threatened by The Company™'s greed.
  • The Gensokyo 20XX series has Reiko and Yukari and their conflict thereof in relation to Reimu. Both were wrong in the case that the former didn't have to hire the latter, an infertile youkai, as a wet-nurse and had a right for wanting Reimu back, as there was an agreement and the aforementioned is her child. However at the same time, the latter has a reason for wanting her, too, in that she cannot have children and took care of her since birth. However, they both could have worked something out, which is subtly expressed. Amoridere acknowledged this:
    Amoridere: Ya' gotta admit, both of them are at fault, as Mikosan asked an infertile youkai to be a wet nurse, when she could have asked an ordinary human to do and Yukari could have worked something out after she had to return Reimu. [...] Yes, yes, if anything their rivalry seemed to be irrational at best but both are pretty reasonable in feeling the way they do.
  • A running theme of Imperfect Metamorphosis is that everyone are doing things for justifiable reasons, but their conflicting methods and refusal to communicate leads to mistrust and infighting, which leads to more mistrust and infighting. Team 9 want to save their friend, Reisen wants to save her friend, Eirin wants to fix her mistake, Sonozika wants to protect humans from youkai, Yukari wants to defend Gensokyo as a whole (at any cost), Kotohime and the GPF want to keep order, Rumia and Rin Satsuki just want to survive, and so on and so forth. Characters like Reimu and Byakuren acknowledge this trope and try for a peaceful, mutually beneficial resolution, but it doesn't work out too well. The only exceptions are Rumia's Superpowered Evil Side, for obvious reasons, and maybe Yuuka, but who knows what she's thinking.
  • Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE- fanfic Shatterheart has this in regards to Fai finding out Real!Syaoran and Kurogane's Secret Relationship. Fai is right that Kurogane and Syaoran have a very codependent relationship and keeping their relationship a secret will hurt them in the long-run. Fai points while Syaoran is an adult, Kurogane should have known better than to take up Syaoran's offer for a relationship because they know that he's still in love with Sakura. Syaoran points that he's capable of making his own decisions and that he is also to blame for keeping a relationship a secret. Syaoran points that it was his decision who he tells because he wasn't never with Sakura. Kurogane points that group relations were hostile and Fai treated Syaoran like crap most of the time, so Fai has no right to stay something now.
  • History's Strongest Shinobi: The argument Naruto and Kenichi have on how to deal with Ragnarok. Kenichi prefers a wait and see approach, that allows both to avoid Ragnarok but leave them perpetually on the defensive. Naruto just wants to go Leeroy Jenkins on them, which could end the problem quickly... or force their opponents to come down on them in force. The bottom line is that the enemy has to be dealt with somehow.
  • In Ever After High fanfic Poisoning Apple, the debate of Rotbart taking Raven's place as Apple's villain. Apple's right that Rotbart is abandoning his responsibility to his story which could doom both Snow White and Swan Lake and it's very demanding that he expects for her to accept him. Rotbart is right that Apple's story will be fine with a replacement villain, especially someone who actually wants to play villain and no one knows if defying one's fate will doom the story. If Apple complains that he's too evil, well he's a villain. He points out that Apple is so used to the non-threatening and benign Raven being her villain, she is not used to the idea that she would actually have to work for her happy ending with a genuinely evil villain.
  • The Miraculous Ladybug fic It's Complicated is kicked off when Chat Noir makes a public declaration of love to Ladybug on a Ladyblog livestream, only to be shot down when Ladybug reveals she likes someone else and then leaves because her transformation is about to run out. Marinette is later shocked when her entire class side with Chat Noir because of how cold Ladybug was and how dejected he looked afterwards, despite her pointing out that he put her on the spot while already knowing that she had to leave urgently. Alya concedes the point after rewatching Ladybug's reaction on the video, as does Chat Noir the next time he sees her. In turn, Ladybug apologises to Chat after realising that he was sincere and it becomes clear this is affecting their partnership. "The way I treated you wasn't right. I totally disregarded your feelings and let my own frustration and anxiety get the better of me. I still think your timing was atrocious, and I don't think it was right of you to put me on the spot like that. However, even if my feelings weren't the same, I shouldn't have treated your feelings like they didn't matter. I'm sorry."
  • Xander's and Buffy's gripes with each other in Influenced Out of Normality are both acknowledged as being legitimate and both are in the wrong. Xander admits he's been giving Buffy the cold shoulder since she came back and he was wrong to try to ruin her relationship with Angel in the past. Buffy realizes that she should apologize for letting her friends think she was dead for months and that Xander understands her staking Angel since he had to stake Jesse, whom he considered his brother.
  • Naruto in Eroninja states that he understands why Minato sealed the Kyuubi within him, explaining that the man had to make a choice between doing what's best for his village and what's best for his family. While Naruto doesn't begrudge Minato his decision, Naruto doesn't think he'd ever be able to sacrifice his family in favor of the village.
  • In Doctor Who and the Rambaldi Enigma, the Third Doctor and Sydney have a debate about the long-term consequences of Rambaldi’s actions after he used his advanced knowledge to create his inventions, with Sydney objecting to Rambaldi unleashing such advanced technology on a relatively primitive society while the Doctor argued that knowledge in itself isn’t evil.
  • Ash and Red have a rather big argument in Chapter 27 of Pokémon Reset Bloodlines in regards to using their bloodline abilities in competitive battling (Red can see the potential outcome of any move he will make in a battle and the accompanying odds of it leading to victory while Ash can give his Pokémon brief power boosts). Red believes that not using them is the same as a naturally gifted person not giving their all, and views Ash as arrogant and disrespectful to his opponents for acting this way. Ash, on the other hand, views his abilities as an unfair advantage that normal humans can't compete against, as well as thinking that if he uses it, it would mean he didn't believe in his Pokémon's strength, only using his abilities in situations where either his Pokémon would have otherwise died or the consequences of losing would have been far worse than just a lost battle. The story doesn't take either side, instead allowing readers to draw their own conclusions. Ultimately, further developments resulted in both Ash and Red seeing where the other was coming from, with Red encountering someone who used his philosophy of always going all out to respect your opponents as an excuse to be a bully and Ultima pointing out that it's a good thing to hold back to not kill or maim your opponent, especially when sparring, and Ash winning a battle that left a bad taste in his mouth after learning his opponent wasn't using his best team.
  • The center of Kurama and Kakashi's conflict in Blackkat's Reverse. Kurama is right that the villages treat their jinchuuriki horribly and don’t know how to train them to their full potential. Hiruzen even admits that their treatment can be considered child abuse on anyone else. But Kakashi is right that Kurama is a kidnapper, as he’s taking young and malleable jinchuuriki from their villages and is igniting tensions between the Great Ninja Villages. Konoha barely managed to prevent another Shinobi War from breaking out.
  • A major conflict in the Homestuck fanventure cool and new web comic is John/"Jhon's" killing of Sweet Bro/"Swet Bro," and Hella Jeff/"Hecka Jef's" attempt to avenge him. The issue is that Rose is immune to the comic's Stylistic Suck and, from her perspective, everything around her turned in to exaggerated nonsense, but she believes that it is possible to "enhance" other people to be like her. She believes that her friends were corrupted by some sapient force, and wants to revert them back — which would involve keeping Jhon alive in the chance that he, too, can become regular John. Both parties want what's best for their friends, and the issue lies in seeing Jhon as a murderer (which is true, as he not only killed Swet Bro purposefully, but he also tried to hide the evidence by baking it in to a cake) or as an innocent friend that has fallen victim to a multiversal corruption that made him Not Himself (which is also true to an extent — Rose has memories of everything being normal, and while she was shitty until being "enhanced" at the beginning of the story, signs point to it being possible to break John and the others out of whatever it is that's affecting the world).
  • Rosario Vampire: Brightest Darkness:
    • In Act VI chapter 46, after hearing Kokoa and Gin's side of the story between the Love Triangle between the two of them and Sun, Arial reaches this conclusion; while she states that Kokoa undoubtedly went too far with her attack on Sun, especially since said attack has left Sun essentially brain dead, she also realizes why Kokoa reacted the way she did; since Sun did spy on her and Gin having sex, and told her she didn't deserve Gin to her face, she basically brought it on herself.
    • Both Tsukune's group and the HDA admit this in Act VI chapter 50. While Moka and co. had good reason to be annoyed with the HDA, considering they automatically deemed all monsters evil based on the actions of a few, the HDA was only acting in self-defense and doing their jobs; as they point out, if humans had been responsible for an attack on a monster city, monsters would have reacted exactly the same way. The latter point is especially poignant, since back in chapter 40, Headmaster Mikogami made those exact same points to the other Dark Lords.
  • In the Young Justice story Life Ore Death, the protagonist Ferris treats the Superman and Superboy situation like this once she understands it. Superman never did anything for which he has to take responsibility - he's functionally a date-rape victim now being hit up for child support - but Conner hasn't done anything to deserve being ignored, even if Superman doesn't owe him anything.
  • In Faded Blue, Lapis calls out the Gems for being imprisoned for thousands of years, which they fire back that they weren't the ones who imprisoned her, Homeworld was. Lapis states that the Gems didn't even try to free her, but the Gems thought that all Gem-based items (like Lapis' mirror) were "dead" gems that didn't have a personality or memories, so they had no reason to do so. Lapis being imprisoned when she could have been freed was wrong, but the Gems didn't know she was there.
  • Universe Falls:
    • The Aesop of "Forever Alone" involves Dipper and Steven accidentally fusing into "Stepper," who is much more unstable than Stevonnie or Maven. Steven thinks Dipper needs to pull himself away from his mysteries and learn how to open up to others and loosen up, while Dipper feels like he's being forced into something he's very uncomfortable with. It isn't until both halves acknowledge the other's point that the resulting fusion finally stabilizes.
    • Dipper lampshades that both Lapis and the Crystal Gems have legitimate reasons to dislike each other, though he obviously feels a bit biased towards Lapis.
    • In "Bot Battle", Stanford and McGucket are initially at odds because McGucket thinks Ford let the portal project go too far because of his pride, to which Ford retorts that Fiddleford just washed his hands of the whole thing and buried his head in the sand instead of trying to help stop whatever damage it caused. At the end of the chapter, the two make amends and admit that the other was right.
  • In Game and Bleach, Ichigo and Tatsuki clear a dungeon and come across dozens of female ogres being held prisoner. Tatsuki demands they free the prisoners while Ichigo insists they don't. Tatsuki's argument is that it'd be inhumane to simply leave the women there to die while Ichigo's counter is that they have no common language, so they can't be sure the ogre women wouldn't attack them and they're in a videogame so said women aren't real. Immediately afterwards, Ichigo has to go through a blood sacrifice to open a locked door (Tatsuki doesn't have enough health to do it) and Tatsuki mocks him for his pain. Ichigo fires back that while those women are fake, his pain is very real and that's the second time he's had to make said sacrifice. After a few minutes to cool off, both admit they were at least partially in the wrong and the other had a point.
  • In Amazing Fantasy, Peter admits that both sides on the issue of the Superhuman Registration Act had a point. On one hand, he hated the sweeping authority it gave over superhumans who didn't even want to be superheroes and the abuses this authority caused. On the other, he supports the living wage, superhero networking, training, and support it provided to those who were willing and able to become heroes. He has to laugh out loud when he learns about the Hero system in Izuku's universe, which is essentially a peaceful and well-organized version of the SHRA.
  • In Sure As the Setting Sun, Mob is worried about the side affects of Izuku's quirk (namely, breaking his bones) so during the Sports Festival, he makes his friend promise that he won't use One For All in his first fight of the tournament. Izuku breaks this promise, along with a finger, and Mob confronts him on it. Mob also notes how Izuku and Todoroki are taking things too seriously and someone is going to get hurt, then goes as far as to suggest that Izuku should give up. Izuku bites back saying that he has a lot to prove and that Mob is trying to hold him back because of his own insecurities. On one hand, Mob has no right to keep his friend from doing anything less then his best, and has no clue what Izuku had to go though in his life whereas Mob is fairly privileged (Mob was born with an immensely powerful quirk whereas Izuku was born quirkless). Izuku is also right in pointing out that Mob doesn’t know what he wants in life, and as such, can't see why someone like Izuku would put himself through the things he does. On the other hand, Mob is not in the wrong for being so concerned with his friend's health, and Izuku shouldn’t make promises he isn't sure he can keep. Additionally, Mob is right in that someone does get hurt in Izuku's fight with Todoroki, as by the end of it, Izuku ends up needing surgery.
  • Last Laugh, First Steps has Dick and Jason discussing the relationship between their younger brothers. Dick rightfully points that Damian feels horrendously insecure and threatened by Tim being the perfect son and partner for Bruce, but Jason fires back it doesn't give the kid any right to constantly dish verbal abuse on Tim or straight-out assault him.
  • The Raven's Plan: At one point, Bran argues with Jon and Sansa about whether or not to fill Ned in on everything that happened in the old timeline all at once. Since more people Remember than planned, Bran feels that Ned should be informed of everything by them before someone else enlightens him, angering him due to not hearing it from them. On the other hand, Jon and Sansa want to spread out the information as to ensure that Ned is not overwhelmed by being hit with too much at once.
  • Departure from the Diary: When Hermione goes to the professors about Harry receiving a Firebolt for Christmas, Harry takes the middle ground between her and Ron. On the one hand, the broom did arrive under rather suspicious circumstances and is prohibitively expensive. On the other, Ron's right that it's impossible for Sirius Black to wander into Gringotts and make a withdrawal of that size given the bounty on his head. Worse is that Hermione went behind Harry's back to inform the professors rather than simply talk to him, especially since Harry was trying to ask her opinion before she ran off.
  • J-WITCH Season 1:
    • In "Big Trouble, Bigger Jade", everyone has a right to get upset with Jade for casting magic on herself without thinking about the consequences and scold her for being irresponsible. However, Cornelia concedes that Jade wanting to help isn't a bad thing and is actually quite understandable. Jackie agrees to let Jade accompany them on their missions as long as she acts responsibly.
    • The argument over whether to tell Elyon about her true heritage is also this. While Cornelia in particular argues that keeping it from her puts her at risk, especially since Cedric has been using his human form to get closer to her, it's pointed out by the other side that she could easily just not believe them or freak out about it. Even Jade says that she'd have trouble handling everything at once if she was in Elyon's shoes. Unfortunately, they're unable to come to a consensus before it's too late.
  • A Dovahkiin Spreads His Wings: Catelyn and Ned Stark's huge row regarding Jon Snow. Ned is rightfully aghast and infuriated when his wife wrongfully insists the bastard is due to hurt his trueborn siblings merely because his illegitimate birth predisposes him to treachery, but Catelyn isn't wrong calling her husband out for wanting to force Jon to stay in Westeros when he's already leading a happy and successful life in Skyrim.
  • In Home, while Coda rejected the Builders Association's request for funding, Hordak allowed it. Coda is trying to keep Dryl's economy steady by only funding what he sees as necessary enterprises, preferring to find the mining operations and making sure that their workers are safe and payed, that money eventually reaching their families and other businesses and thus spurs economic growth. Hordak on the other hand believes that the money should be used to provide for the everyday citizens, putting in the efforts to rebuild Dryl to higher living standards so that they have enough to work at maximum efficiency. Really, it is a case of Individualism vs. Collectivism and neither of them are completely wrong in their reasoning.

    Films — Animation 
  • The main conflict of Superman vs. the Elite. Superman adamantly sticks to his Thou Shalt Not Kill policy even as the Elite gains public support for killing the bad guys, and when the Elite later declare that they decide who the villains are, and that "people who endanger innocent lives" can apply to more than just criminals and terrorists, it shows how the Elite's methods can lead to Jumping Off the Slippery Slope and He Who Fights Monsters territory. On the other hand, the Elite believe their way is better since Superman just beating up criminals and having them thrown in improper prisons leads to Joker Immunity and allows villains like the Atomic Skull to just keep killing... which, unfortunately, happens nearly all the time.
  • Brave: This is the reason why Merida and her mother are always at odds at the beginning. Merida is correct about how her mother shouldn’t try to control every aspect of her life and how she should act. Elinor is also right about Merida acting like a brat and how necessary it is for Merida to learn the skill she needs, including diplomacy, to be her eventual successor.
  • In Frozen (2013), the argument between Anna and Elsa over her impromptu engagement with Hans comes off as this. On one hand, Elsa is right that Anna cannot marry someone that she just met and that she is too naive to understand the concept of love. On the other hand, Anna has a lonely and isolated life secluded in the castle with a completely distant sister, and the gates are about to shut the next day and cut off future opportunities to meet other people, so it's understandable that she wants to take what may be her only chance to marry someone who shows her affection and doesn't shut her out. Ultimately their inability to see the other's points leads into a huge argument that leads to Elsa snapping at her sister, revealing her powers in the process. In the end, Anna learns that love and friendliness aren't the same thing, while Elsa learns that shutting people out is not the solution to her problem and learns that opening up her heart with love is the key to control her powers.
  • Mulan: This trope happens the moment Shang leaves Mulan behind after her gender is revealed. Mulan joined the army under illegal false pretenses and has been lying about her entire identity, so Shang's standpoint that he shouldn't trust her is understandable, if incorrect. On the other hand, Mulan only did what she did to save her father's life, and she's probably right when she implies ("You said you'd trust Ping. Why is Mulan any different?") that culturally-ingrained sexism is also influencing Shang at this point.

    Films — Live Action 
  • The Amazing Spider Man 2: Harry Osborn is suffering from a terminal disease, and wants Spider-Man's blood, believing it to be his only hope of survival; however, Spider-Man refuses, believing it might harm or kill him, or even turn Harry into a monster like the Lizard. While Spidey makes a valid point, Harry also does when he points out to Spidey that he's already dying, so he's got nothing to lose either way.
  • The Social Network is done this way, and the characters themselves reach this conclusion: None of them is truly unsympathetic, and they all have more or less valid claims and complaints.
  • In Team America: World Police, both 'dicks' and 'pussies' have a point, according to Gary's (plagiarized but altered) speech at the end. The 'assholes' on the other hand, just want to shit all over everything.
  • X-Men Film Series:
    • X-Men had this trope for the Senate hearing where Dr. Jean Grey debated with politicians concerning mutants. Both sides brought up good points, which was the intention of the director. On the one hand, it is an invasion of privacy and discrimination to demand that all mutants register their names, powers, and identities with the government. On the other, mutants are genuinely superhuman, some of them with extremely dangerous abilities... abilities that law enforcement needs to know how to protect people from should a mutant decide to abuse his or her powers.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand:
      • When a cure for mutants is introduced, Magneto is wary that humans will 'draw first blood' and use it to forcibly strip mutants of their powers—which is exactly what they do. Unfortunately, he, the Brotherhood and the Phoenix then go on to launch an attack on the cure-production facility (tearing the Golden Gate Bridge off its foundations in the process) with the stated intent of destroying the cure's source—which happens to be an innocent teenage boy who is himself a mutant, thus giving humans every reason to believe that mutants are exactly as dangerous and destructive as feared.
      • Also, when the heroes are discussing taking the cure.
        Storm: I don't believe this. What sort of coward would take that just to fit in?
        Beast: Is it cowardice to want to be free from persecution? Not everyone can blend in so easily; you don't shed on the furniture.
  • In Traffic there are more than just two sides and most of them have a point. The most surprising one coming from the arrested drug dealer who points out that the DEA agents are also technically working for the drug mafia as they are being used by one of the drug cartels to destroy its opposition.
  • What makes WarGames so special is how it delivers its anti-war message without demonizing either side. Both General Beringer and Professor Falken have sound ideas about how best to deal with JOSHUA and prevent him from causing a pre-emptive nuclear war.
  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes has this as one of its primary themes. Save for Koba (who even early on has good points), both the humans and apes are just trying to survive. The humans want to rebuild civilization while the apes want to thrive in theirs and neither really want a war. Neither have much reason to trust the other side either and have all rights to make efforts to protect themselves. Overall, the film depicts the good and peaceful intentions of a reasonable many, being hampered and eventually sunk by the ill (though understandable) actions of an unreasonable few.
  • In Transformers: Age of Extinction, humans have a good reason for wanting to build anti-Transformer technology since battles have razed cities and killed thousands of innocent people in the crossfire. On the other hand, if left unchecked, Decepticons would easily destroy/enslave humanity, nor did it justify working with a murderous Cybertronian or killing/experimenting on the good Autobots.
  • Other People's Money avoids the easy trap of portraying either Jorgy or Larry as wrong. They just have fundamentally different beliefs of what a business is for and how one ought to be run.
  • The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug has Thranduil and Thorin. Thorin accuses Thranduil of being honorless because the Dwarves came to him once looking for shelter after Smaug took the Mountain for himself and Thranduil just shut them out. Thranduil accuses Thorin of being just like his grandfather, being so obsessed with pride and greed that he won't listen to reason. It takes a while to realize that both sides are guilty: Thranduil didn't have to attack the dragon, he could have just aided the refugees, whereas Thorin is becoming more and more like a Jerkass the closer he gets to the Mountain and by the third film, Thranduil is proven absolutely right.
  • Captain America: Civil War:
    • Tony believes that the Avengers need to be accountable for their actions, while Steve believes that the heroes themselves are the best ones to make judgement calls. Their experiences in previous films both lend credence to their points of view:
      • Tony's cavalier attitude towards his tech has led to horrible consequences, while Steve has encountered corrupt and incompetent government officials who've made situations worse.
      • What it comes down to is that while the heroes might not be the best ones to make a judgement call, how can they be sure that anyone they hand the responsibility to would be better?
    • On a more personal level, they make several questionable decisions in how they handle the conflict. They do, however, raise several valid points. From Iron Man:
      • He's hounded by the captured Anti-Accord team for arresting them and sending them to a Hellhole Prison. While they are indeed given very dubious treatment, Stark points out that he was just doing his duty (as he is under a lot of government pressure), and that the Anti-Accord side should have known what they risked when they aided a known felon.
      • Likewise, Cap tears into Tony for keeping Wanda under what is essentially house arrest without even telling her, and while Tony's motivations and right to make that call are left dubious, he is right when he says Wanda really isn't safe among the masses right now.
      • Lastly, while Tony could be seen as irresponsible in bringing Spider-Man, who's still an inexperienced teenager, into the conflict, his orders were for Peter to keep his distance and just web up opponents without becoming involved, which Peter promptly ignores. His first scene even depicts him being guilt-shamed by the mother of a Sokovian victim and he presents this to the Avengers as why he thinks they, himself included, need to be kept in check. Tony doesn't start acting irrational until Zemo's schemes ruin any chance of reconciliation between the two sides.
      • At the climax, Tony is completely right that Bucky killed Tony's parents and Steve at least suspected it. Steve tells the truth when questioned and later apologizes to Tony for lying.
    • From Captain America:
      • He seemingly takes the accusations of collateral damage very lightly, but he does make a valid point saying things would be much, much worse if the Avengers didn't do anything at all (specifically, the human race would've been conquered by Thanos or HYDRA, or driven extinct by Ultron, either of which is overwhelmingly worse than the collateral damage caused by the Avengers in stopping these from happening).
      • While he may be borderline unreasonable in his desire not to sign the accords (it should be noted that Steve was willing to compromise up until he heard about the situation with Wanda's house arrest), he points out those agreements would turn the Avengers into a bunch of glorified attack dogs, which would only allow him to help people selectivelynote , to say nothing of how easily groups like HYDRA or other villains (such as the villain of this very movie) have repeatedly been able to insert themselves into government groups like this in the past.
      • Additionally, the way the government officials act throughout the film (sending a team after Bucky, who's only a suspect based on circumstantial evidence, with shoot-to-kill orders, refusing to adhere to Steve, Sam, and Bucky's right to legal representation after they're brought in, and refusing to release the captured Team Cap members and go after Zemo when it's definitively proven he was responsible for the bombing) shows that putting them in control of the Avengers would not be the best idea.
      • He also gets a lot of flak for dragging all the other Anti-Accord heroes in his quest to help Bucky, disregarding the fact that each and every one of them made the decision to help Cap themselves, with several of them having their own personal motivations for assisting Cap.
      • When it comes to the climax, while Steve does admit that he does selfishly want to protect Bucky, he also is correct that Bucky was brainwashed into killing the Starks. Tony acknowledges this when he greets Bucky as "Manchurian Candidate" and when told about the brainwashing, says "I don't care," rather than claiming that Steve is wrong/lying.
    • The Russos, however, state that Tony trying to kill Bucky was less about hurting Bucky himself (although it may have still been a possibility), and more about hurting Steve for lying to him.
  • Who Framed Roger Rabbit: While Eddie makes a point that Angelo would rat out Roger for money, Roger also makes a point that making him laugh would get him to change his mind.
  • In SHAZAM! (2019), Freddy rightfully calls out Billy for taking his new powers for granted and abusing them to become a showoff and get money. However, Billy is right to tell off Freddy for wanting Billy as Shazam around for selfish reasons like wanting to boost Freddie's own popularity at school, not caring about the risk of exposing Billy's identity.
  • Deadpool 2: The conflict between Deadpool and Colossus comes down to this:
  • My Days of Mercy: Lucy is an anti-death penalty activist, while Mercy favors it. Both are portrayed as having sympathetic motivations, and the pair treat each other respectfully regarding this despite their disagreement, while growing to understand the other view more (Mercy ends up helping Lucy on her dad's case).
  • Denial: Defied. Prior to Lipstadt writing her book that Irving would sue over, she notes that several student newspapers (some of which are even run by Jews) ran adverts proclaiming Holocaust denial and asking for debate by Bradley Smith, under the reasoning that "both sides deserve to be heard". Which ignores that one side is demonstrably wrong. After the verdict comes down on her side, she rams this point home in her remarks to the press. "Not all opinions are equal. And some things happen, just like we say they do. Slavery happened. The Black Death happened. The Earth is round, the icecaps are melting, and Elvis is not alive."

  • The trope is reduced to absurdity in an old Jewish joke. Two Jews come to a rabbi to resolve a dispute and present their arguments; they also bring along a witness. The rabbi, after leafing through the Talmud for a couple of hours, finally says: "Shlomo, you are right. But, Moyshe, you are right as well". The puzzled witness asks: "But, rabbi, how can two men with completely different opinions be right at the same time? It's impossible!". The rabbi replies: "You know, Joshua, it turns that you are right as well!"

  • The Sheriff of Nottingham is able to do this to himself in In A Dark Wood, Michael Cadnum's Good vs. Good retelling of Robin Hood. Halfway through the book, he is able to recognize that although Robin Hood is an outlaw, he is also a good man. It isn't until the end of the book that he is able to find a point of reconciliation between this and his duty to uphold the law.
  • The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama use this trope as a cornerstone for much of its portrayal of the political landscape.
  • Black Crown: In the story 'Schism', both King Flavius and Lord Corrigan have a point depending on how you view a government's duty to its people.
  • "The Dance of the Dragons", a historical civil war in the world of A Song of Ice and Fire. Viserys I declares his daughter from his first marriage, Rhaneyra, as heir. However he continues proclaiming her heir despite having sons from his second marriage. When he dies Rhaenyra and her half-brother Aegon II fight for supremacy. They both have valid points. Viserys proclaimed Rhaenyra his heir and she is older then Aegon. On the other hand, proclaiming a daughter over a son goes completely against the succession laws most of Westeros works on. This is even more strict among the Kings, Viserys only becoming heir to the throne due to his female cousin Rhaenys being passed over (he's the son of the second son, while Rhaenys was daughter of the first son of King Jaehaerys I), a law which was decided upon in the Great Council of the Lords. It doesn't help that Rhaenyra is married to her uncle, the ruthless and amoral Daemon Targaryen, who doesn't at all look like someone who should hold power. However, both claimants show themselves to be poor and brutal rulers, and refuse to compromise: when Rhaneyra takes King's Landing she refuses the offer to call another Great Council to determine succession, along with both branches of the family murdering other members, Aegon's full brother Aemond murdering one of Rhanyra's sons Lucerys Velaryon, and Daemon avenging his stepsons murder by sending men to murder one of Aegon's infant sons. Ironically, due to Aegon's line dying out Rhaenyra's line gets the Iron Throne, but remains with strict male-line inheritance, Rhaenyra partly ruining her cause with her tyranny.
  • The Parental Marriage Veto that caused all the agony in Persuasion. Anne Elliot was persuaded not to marry young Captain Fredrick Wentworth by her godmother Lady Russell. Anne has come to deeply regret this, having been subsumed by her family troubles and never finding a man equal to him. And to say Wentworth was mad is a gross understatement. However, Lady Russell, though a little prejudiced towards the gentry, did have a point that young Wentworth was Unable to Support a Wife. Anne's father would certainly not have helped them, and Wentworth's assumption that he'd capture enough prizes to secure their comfort was rather naive. There was no guarantee a newly-maded captain in the Napoleonic Wars would even survive, much less strike it rich, and that Wentworth's optimism bore fruit was mostly a matter of luck.
  • Similar to the X-Men examples above, the central conflict of The Infected is about the role of the titular Infected (basically, mutants) in society. Many of the objections to the Infected seem rooted in religion and reflexive xenophobia at first, however, the Infected really are unstable (each has an individualized mental disorder called a 'first mode') and dangerous. A major plot point in the first book was how Melanie Miller, a nine-year-old girl, almost destroys North America through a bad case of Power Incontinence, and murderous rampages are an almost weekly occurrence. On the other hand, the Infected are certainly correct to be concerned when kids are shot in the street for glowing, sudden mobs turn up when visibly Infected eat out or run to the store, and Congress is debating "concentrating" the Infected population in special camps.
  • The Berenstain Bears: In the novel The Berenstain Bear Scouts and the Sinister Smoke Ring, Farmer Ben is annoyed at a group of anti-smoking protestors, who vehemently oppose him growing tobacco plants on his farm, and insists that they have no right to protest on his property, while they insist he has no right to grow such a "filthy weed." In the end, the police defuse the situation using this trope, pointing out that while Ben is right that they have no right to protest on his property, they can do so all they want on the street away from it. On the protestors' end, the police also agree with them that Smoking Is Not Cool, but point out that tobacco is a legal crop, and Ben has every right to grow it on his farm if he wants.
  • The two rival families of Dance of the Butterfly work for, ostensibly, the same goal, though they have some vastly different methods of achieving it. Though it may be simple to categorize the Malkuths as evil, they put forward their methods as being ultimately utilitarian and thus for the greater good. Just don't get in their way as they try to save you.
  • Sleeping Beauties: In the final conflict. The "good guys", Clint Nocross, and his followers, made a deal with Eve Black that Clint would keep her alive till a designated time, and in return Eve would wake up the women (on the condition that they chose to return to the waking world). So they put the prison in lockdown mode and refuse to let anyone in to talk to or even see Eve. Clint also correctly fears that there might be men out there in Dooling who want to kill Eve because they hope it will wake up all the women or simply because they want a scapegoat when she proves unable to wake up their sleeping loved ones. On the other hand, you can't entirely blame their opponents, who want to get their hands on Eve, either. The men of Dooling are desperate to find a cure for their loved ones and believe Eve to be the key to finding one (which is technically true, though not in the way they think since Eve can't end Aurora entirely by herself). Their leader, Frank Geary, is correct about the fact that Norcross has no authority to put the prison in lockdown, and is at first willing to let Judge Silver bring in a professional negotiator to try and resolve the conflict peacefully. And of course, Norcross refusal to let anyone near Eve only makes him look suspicious. Eve only makes it worse by outright telling Frank he has to kill her.
  • In Daniel Keys Moran's "The Last Dancer", in 2076 America is controlled by the United Nations, and is about to stage the 2nd American Revolution. The leader of the UN forces speaks to his troops about how the world is safer and better with a powerful world government for most people even though some oppression does occur, while the leader of the American revolutionary forces speaks to her troops about the need for self-government and freedom. They are both right, and the leader of the UN forces (Mohammed Vance) is portrayed as a ruthless but honorable man who honestly regrets the killing that he has and will order.
  • John Wyndham tries to present this in the novella "Consider Her Ways" by asking the question, "Would women be better off if there were no men?" Two characters argue over this, with neither presented as being irrational or clearly wrong. The male-less society shown actually does seem pretty awful, thus implying the pro-men character is correct. However, her argument is that it's terrible that there's no romantic love any more, rather than pointing out that the post-gendercide society is a repressive caste-based dictatorship.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The 100: This is the basis for the conflict between the Grounders and the Sky People, as both sides have good reasons to distrust and dislike the other and both sides are guilty of committing terrible acts against the other, both intentionally and unintentionally.
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine:
    • In the Season 4 episode: "Moo Moo" Terry is profiled and arrested by a racist police officer. Terry wants to file an official complaint against the officer. However, Holt, also a black man, tells Terry to let it go. Terry wants to file the complaint not only because he wants justice, but also because he doesn't want the officer who arrested him to get away with it and could potentially go on to do it again. Holt advises Terry to let it go because it could be seen as "rocking the boat," and could seriously harm Terry's ability to advance his career and that he may be better off in the long run by getting into a position of power so he can address the systemic racism within the NYPD in a more profound way. In the end, Terry goes ahead and files the complaint. While the officer does recieve an official reprimand, Terry is passed over for a community liaison position he applied for.
    • In the Season 6 episode, He Said She Said, a woman who was the victim of an attempted sexual assault by her boss is offered a large cash settlement if she agrees to sign a Nondisclosure Agreement. Amy convinces her to not take the case and to press charges against her boss, something that Rosa disagrees with. Amy's argument is that no one should be allowed to get away with committing a crime just because they have a lot of money, and that when women come forward with their stories, it empowers more women to do so. Rosa's argument is that because they have no physical evidence that the assault took place, and that a Jury is unlikely to believe her; the victim may very well end up losing the money, losing her job, losing her reputation, and may even be blacklisted from ever getting a job in finance ever again.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: In "Dead Man's Party", while both sides in the tension between Buffy and her friends and family act like jerks to each other, both also have valid reasons to be upset. While the Scoobies and Joyce weren't wrong to be angry and hurt that Buffy abandoned them without a word, Buffy also had valid reasons to feel isolated and overly-pressured, and that the other Scoobies and Joyce weren't entirely helpful in supporting her with them.
  • Equal Justice: Both sides in the contentious cases make fair points in favor of their position, no matter who the jury (or the audience) ends up siding with.
  • For the People is built on this from a courtroom standpoint. In general, the series makes clear the importance of due process and how important it is to have the prosecution and the defence both trying their hardest for their clients, because if they make exceptions for one client they can make exceptions for any of them.
  • The Frasier episode "Dinner At Eight". On the one hand, Martin is right that Frasier and Niles need to relax and enjoy "normal" things sometimes; but seeing as how their hostess just cut off their (presumably expensive) ties, they have a right to be angry. Or at least very, very annoyed.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • In "The Wars to Come", Jon urges Mance to bend the knee to Stannis to save his people by earning them a place south of the Wall, but Mance argues his authority comes from a respect that would evaporate the moment they see him kneel and any leader that gives a damn about his people wouldn't ask them to die for a foreigner.
    • In "Dragonstone", Jon and Sansa differ in opinions on how to handle Houses Umber and Karstark, who had joined forces with the Boltons and been subsequently defeated. Sansa wishes to punish the remainder of the Houses and give their lands as a reward to more loyal families, which is the normal and expected practice of the time; failure to do so could encourage other families to abandon the Starks when things get tough. But Jon counters that it's cruel and unfair to punish the Houses' children for actions that they had no part in (the perpetrators having died in battle) and showing mercy when harshness is expected could buy loyalty in the future. Jon only wins the argument by pulling rank as King in the North.
    • In "The Dragon and the Wolf", Jaime is furious with Cersei when he learns she lied to Jon and Danaerys when she said she would send troops to help them fight the Night King. Cersei justifies this by saying that following the devastating loss the Lannister army suffered to Danaerys at the Battle of Blackwater Run, they need to keep whatever troops they still have until the Golden Company arrive, to defend King's Landing against either winner up North. But Jaime points out, equally correctly, that once Dany and Jon learn she was lying to them, they will have no reason to refrain from attacking her should they winnote , and if the Army of the Dead wins their numbers will be increased by all those they kill in the North, making it less likely they will be able to defend King's Landing even with the Golden Company.
    • After the former outcome, indeed, in "The Last of the Starks", as Jaime warned, Dany wants to attack Cersei immediately before she has any more time to bolster their defenses. But Sansa objects, noting that the surviving armies of the North are exhausted and should be allowed to rest before beginning another campaign.
  • In the Girls episode "Close-Up", Mimi-Rose blithely reveals to Adam that she aborted a pregnancy by him the day before. She asks him if he had wanted a child, and he says "Maybe". She points out that they have only been living together for seven weeks, which doesn't seem like a long enough time to have made that decision together. He responds that his parents got married after only having known each other for a week, however.
  • How I Met Your Mother: In the episode "How Lily Stole Christmas," Ted and Lily get into a major spat when Lily finds out that Ted called her a "Grinch" for calling off her engagement to Marshall in order to pursue an art fellowship in San Francisco. While Lily is justifiably angry for Ted calling her that, as well as for him secretly holding a grudge against her for her actions and refusing to apologize, Ted is also right to be angry, since Lily's abrupt departure and lack of contact also hurt him and the other people in Marshall's life, and she never apologized to him for leaving.
  • In season 3 of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, protagonist Midge spends the summer touring with a musician named Shy Baldwin as his opening act. She finds out that he’s gay. She doesn’t care but given that it’s set in 1960, it has to be kept a secret. In the finale when she’s getting ready to open for him in front of a black audience (Shy is black as well) in Harlem, her opening act’s manager yells at her and tells her she’s gonna bomb because a white girl doesn’t have anything in common with them. It spooks her and Shy’s manager, Reggie, tells her that Shy is what she and the audience have in common and tells her to talk about him and so she does. She starts making jokes about him being a diva and high maintenance that Reggie and Shy take to mean that she’s outing him. She genuinely didn’t mean it that way and the audience didn’t take it that way. The straw that broke the camel’s back was saying that he had “Judy Garland” shoes. Talking about Garland back in the day was a code for being gay. She doesn’t know this but the two of them do. Once again, the audience didn’t seem to understand it. Reggie meets her on the Tarmac when they’re supposed to be getting on a plane to Europe and fires her. On one hand, she was told to make jokes about him and it was an honest misunderstanding but on the other hand, he trusted her with his secret, she used a specific code word. Given the time period and him being a Twofer Token Minority, it’s understandable that he’s sensitive about anything that could remotely be construed as being about him being gay getting around.
  • George spends one episode of Seinfeld arguing with another driver over a parking spot. While George was there first the other driver states that he was sitting around instead of parking. George argues that the man is parallel parking front first which is unusual, but as the other driver points out its not actually illegal. By the end the matter is unresolved.
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: In "The Begotten", Odo and his old 'mentor' Mora Pel argue about how best to 'raise' a newly-discovered 'infant' changeling now that Odo's been turned into a solid and can't just link with it to teach it; Odo wanting to encourage it as opposed to the probes and shock tests Mora used to experiment on him (although Mora argues that he didn't even know if Odo was sentient when he did most of those tests). Their experiments finally conclude with both parties proving correct; the infant changeling only starts making an effort when Mora uses his shock methods (albeit in a much more controlled and moderated way than he did with Odo), but because Odo had been trying to emotionally connect with it, the infant clearly recognizes Odo as a friend, where Odo had come to resent Mora. This is most evident in their first unprompted shapeshifting; where Odo's had been to form a tentacle to slap Mora away from the control console, the infant tries to imitate Odo's face. In essence, the infant's first attempt to communicate was it trying to say "Hello", where Odo's was more akin to "Stop it".
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation:
    • In "Half a Life", Lwaxana Troi falls in love with Dr. Timicin, whose people commit ritual suicide upon their sixtieth birthday, which he is weeks away from. Lwaxana and Timicin debate the merits of mid-life euthanasia as compared to growing old and dying naturally, and the episode paints neither him nor Lwaxana as explicitly right or wrong. He ends up wanting to stay alive long enough to see his very important research finished, but the pressure of his society overwhelms him, he decides to go through with the euthanasia. As sad as this makes Lwaxana, she ultimately accepts his decision.
    • In "I, Borg", the Enterprise crew considers introducing a Logic Bomb to the Borg, with both Crusher and Riker bringing up legitimate points in opposing and supporting its use. Crusher hammers the point that using it would tantamount to genocide, while Riker notes that the Borg are such a huge, existential threat that it would be justifiable.
  • Stranger Things:
    • In Season 3, after Nancy's Intrepid Reporter Shenannigains get both her and Jonathan fired from their internships at the Hawkins local newspaper, they have a massive fight stemming from the fact that while she has a father who makes six figures, Jonathan needed this job to help support his family. Johnathan reminds her that they were interns who had no business acting as investigative reporters and that her actions opened the paper up to a lot of potentially dire legal consequences. He accuses her of being an entitled, spoiled brat who expects success to be handed to her on a silver platter. Nancy, on the other hand, points out that while Will was treated fairly well, she was subject to humiliation and extremely misogynistic treatment by the other employees, and that nothing short of proving herself as a reporter was ever going to make them treat her with even the smallest modicum of respect and that he shouldn't just brush that aside.
  • That's My Bush! did it multiple times during its eight-episode run. Trey Parker and Matt Stone were clearly less interested in making political points than just Parodying sitcoms in a political setting.

  • "TMZ" by "Weird Al" Yankovic. The song is mostly bashing TMZ for picking apart every little thing celebrities do, but the bridge turns it around by pointing out that these shows also report less trivial things (DUIs, racist rants) that might have had less coverage if not for shows like that.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The World of Darkness:
    • Every splat has an antagonist faction where the conflict is black vs grey (e.g. you're a werewolf fighting the wyrm to keep the world from being destroyed), a faction where the conflict is grey vs grey (e.g. you're a mage in conflict with the technocrats because you're competing for a prize you both want - control of reality), and a faction where the conflict is white vs grey... and you're the grey (e.g. you're a vampire and human hunters are coming for you with stakes, and are completely in the right, as even if you're "moral" you're one failed will save from a murder spree and have probably failed that save at least once).
    • The later versions of Mage: The Ascension used this perspective. The Technocratic Union wants a stable and democratic reality where everyone is able to create miracles through technology. They have largely succeeded: the modern world with computers, airplanes and modern medicine exists by their design. Their opponents, the Traditions, prefer a more unstable (ahem, dynamic) reality with more personal freedom - a freedom of expression that includes rewriting reality itself rather then merely writing words. (The original version had this same conflict of interest, but hardcoded that the Technocracy's ideals made them Dirty Communists.) Taken a step further in The Sorcerer's Crusade; in the Dark Ages, when everyone believed in magic, the Traditions (especially the Order of Hermes) were in control and maintaining the stability of the world while the upstart Order of Reason wanted to overturn this consensus reality for the good of everyone. The future Technocrats won, at which point the Traditions became the Plucky Underdogs.
    • The successor game, Mage: The Awakening, took this conflict and put it into the tradition mages and the free council, both playable factions that are nominally allied and can be mixed into the same cabal. The traditions essentially advocate the "magic is superior/new things are bad" viewpoint, backed up mechanically by new human technologies draining the power from old spells. The free council thinks new stuff is great, drawing power from new concepts and even technology in crafting rote spells. The primary antagonist faction was changed into decadent god-priests obsessed with controlling the destiny of mages and mortals specifically to avoid this trope, though many complained that it weakened the setting by bringing up the trope in a new way: that's pretty much what the traditions want, too.
  • Dungeons & Dragons has settings that try to take this approach to racial conflicts, as an alternative to Always Chaotic Evil and everyone just being tragically misunderstood (which gets bland quickly). Eberron, for instance, affiliates most of the "monster" races with fallen or current civilizations with religious or economic conflicts with the players' home civilizations. This dodges the unfortunate implications of the usual racial warfare while still giving reasonably simple reasons to get into sword and sorcery brawls within moments of running into each other.

  • Fiddler on the Roof runs on this trope. Tevye is caught in the clash between the traditional world and the modern world. He's a really smart guy, but poor and uneducated. He tries his best to be fair and see both sides of the situation, with many inner monologues about "on the one hand [...] but on the other hand". In the page quote above he gets ridiculed for not simply picking a side when two guys who both have valid ideas stick to parroting slogans at each other instead of making more nuanced arguments for their causes.
  • Doubt focuses on the struggle of Sister Aloyisus trying to prove that Father Flynn has molested a young boy. The play never makes it clear whether or not he's guilty; Father Flynn ends up becoming the new pastor at a different school, at worst freeing him up to molest more kids, and at best causing damage to both his reputation and beloved students at the Catholic school. Apparently, the author does know the true answer, but only reveals it to actors who play Father Flynn on Broadway or in film.

    Video Games 
  • In The Amazon Trail 2, one location has you talk to an oil executive and a native from the area. The executive wants to drill for oil, and the native doesn't want the environment to be spoiled. Now while the game has a bias to the native, the game will only reward you if you listen to both characters about the issue.
  • In Mass Effect 2 this is the Paragon resolution of post-loyalty mission conflicts between members of The Squad. Inverted in the Renegade resolutions, where Shepard points out that neither side has a point and they're both endangering the mission for no good reason.
  • A major theme of Dragon Age is that there is never a clear-cut right or wrong answer to any conflict. For the Templar/Mage conflict in Dragon Age II the Mages are horribly oppressed by the Chantry's Templars, imprisoning them to keep the city safe and treating all Mages as dangers. At the same time there are a lot of Mages who seem to turn to Blood Magic and the like, due to the weakness of the Veil in the area. Better safe than sorry? Analyzed exhaustively in this essay.
  • This is what drives a lot of the Grey-and-Gray Morality in the Geneforge series, with even the more "evil" factions such as the Takers or Barzites making the occasional valid point.
  • The Elder Scrolls
    • Redguard society has traditionally been divided into two sociopolitical groups: The Crowns, descended from Redguard nobility, hold Yokudan tradition in high regard and dislike foreigners, while the Forebears, descended from the warriors who conquered Hammerfell, are more comfortable with incorporating aspects of other Tamriellic cultures (especially Breton and Imperial cultures) into their way of life. A third political movement, the Lhotunics, emerged after the Warp in the West, who espouse both the cosmopolitan values of the Forebears and the sense of tradition and respect for the past of the Crowns, but are generally held in contempt by both sides...
    • The civil war subplot in Skyrim is rife with this, as well as plenty of Grey-and-Gray Morality. It revolves around the Civil War raging in Skyrim between the Imperial forces and the Stormcloak rebels (with the Aldmeri Dominion looming in the background).
      • The Stormcloaks, Nord secessionists, (rightfully) criticize the Empire for not understanding the people of Skyrim or their culture/religion (agreeing to the ban on Talos worship in the White-Gold Concordant with the Dominion to end the first Great War was the final straw for many Nords). They follow Ulfric Stormcloak, a man of great courage and loyalty to his allies (which his enemies acknowledge) and is a paragon of traditional Nord values. They (justifiably) feel that the Empire caved-in to end the Great War (in which thousands of Nords gave their lives fighting for the Empire), and that it's become a decrepit, obstructive entity with weak leadership that has given their enemies huge amounts of power in Skyrim without the Nords' consent. Also, a few characters mention that the Empire has been putting high taxes on Skyrim after the war, limiting the citizens' financial well-being.
      • The Empire is trying to hold onto Skyrim because it needs both the resources and the manpower, especially since they expect a full-scale second "Great War" with the Aldmeri Dominion (see below) in the near future. Even many Nords continue to support the Empire, realizing that united Skyrim backing the Empire has the best chance to defeat the Dominion in the inevitable second Great War. Despite their success in retaking the Imperial City during the Great War, it came at great cost and the leadership of the Empire realized that agreeing to the White-Gold Concordat would buy them some much-needed time to recover. They also don't really bother to even enforce some of the more-hated terms of the Concordat, such as the ban on Talos worship. Additionally, Skyrim has historically been one of the Empire's (which was founded by Talos) greatest supporters, and that the all-important Nord honor demands that they support their long-time ally. They (rightfully) believe that Ulfric and the Stormcloaks are putting Honor Before Reason, and that their rebellion is extremely short-sighted. (Both sides agree that the Dominion is irredeemably evil, with open intentions of dominating and oppressing the world in any way they can.) Further, Ulfric and the Stormcloacks have displayed significant Fantastically Racist tendencies and Ulfric himself used a traditional Nordic challenge as an excuse to effortlessly kill the previous King of Skyrim (albeit with the victim accepting his challenge), despite said King having been known to support Ulfric's views up until being challenged. Also, some characters reveal that the unity of the Empire allows for prosperous trade and surplus of food, and Skyrim's independence will damage this trade.
      • Behind it all lies the Aldmeri Dominion, led by the extremist Thalmor, who are pulling the strings behind the scenes and may have even been responsible for instigating the civil war. They hope to weaken the Empire by depriving it of its strongest remaining province while bleeding both sides dry for an eventual Dominion takeover. There is even evidence that they tortured and brainwashed Ulfric Stormcloak as a prisoner in the waning days of the Great War and then unleashed him to accomplish exactly this task. (However, they may have underestimated Ulfric's leadership and inspirational abilities, as he quickly proved to be more effective than intended...) Both sides of the civil war agree that the Dominion is the greater threat, but are at odds over the best way to deal with them.
    • It even branches off into the main quest. The Blades don't like the Greybeards because they'd rather the Dragonborn focus on learning to control their Thu'um, and because they refuse to intervene in Tamriel's ongoing crises. Conversely, the Greybeards don't like the Blades because they constantly meddle in affairs they don't understand, and wish to use the Dragonborn as a soldier. Of course, because Alduin has emerged, and threatens Tamriel with destruction, the Dragonborn doesn't have time to meditate on the voice, but to simply charge in with blades drawn is a fool's venture.
  • There's something of a Deconstruction in Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords. Inside Ludo Kressh's tomb the player is faced with a series of illusions. In one of these, the player's companions are about to attack Kreia (the player's mentor) and the player must decide who to side with. However, if the player answers "I won't attack you, but I won't stop the others from attacking you either", Kreia exasperatedly scolds you and everyone present tells you that "apathy is death".
  • RuneScape: Word Of God is that each of the setting's gods have their own idea of what is best for the world, each as valid as the next. Even Zamorak, previously considered the God of Evil.
  • Rift gives us the Guardians vs. the Defiants. The Guardians are divinely inspired/powered heroes seeking to rid the world of the Defiants whose technology is destroying the only thing keeping the dragons from causing The End of the World as We Know It. The Defiants are persecuted "lesser" races who have dealt with the Guardians bearing down on them for generations, and who can only defend themselves with said technology. Both sides are right, and both sides are at fault: the Guardian intro makes it clear that the Defiants are, actually, at fault for unleashing Regulos and the dragons; however they go way too far in their persecution and drive some members of the Defiants to make a Deal with the Devil in the first place, and neither side can stop killing the other one all the way through the far-future Defiant intro to realize they shouldn't be enemies, even as the world literally dies around them and Regulos gets his way. The character of either side ends up in the "middle ground" timeline of the main game (either because of being Not Quite Dead for years, or through actual Time Travel) at which point they immediately go about killing the other side instead of actually dealing with the Dragons for most of the early areas.
  • The final battle in Tales of Xillia, especially in the English version, comes down to an argument about taking harsh but justifiable actions with guaranteed benefits versus a gentler plan with the chance of superior long term benefits, with the villains taking the former chance and the player party taking the latter.
  • A major source of the Alliance versus Horde conflict in World of Warcraft. The Alliance is racist and brutal against the Horde but the Horde tried to kill them all and quite a few of them are kinda-sorta evil. Given the Horde has mitigating circumstances for many of their past crimes and has helped save the world, both sides have degenerated to a "he did this, she did that" situation to justify the cycle of hatred.
  • Interestingly, Grand Theft Auto V gives credence to both sides in the torn friendship between its Villain Protagonists. Michael wanted to leave the dangerous criminal lifestyle behind for his family's sake, so he betrayed his more Ax-Crazy friends to the FIB. Trevor, as unrepentant as he is, regards the concepts of loyalty and True Companions very highly, and is thus understandably pissed at Michael for his treachery and especially since it got their other runner, Brad, killed. In the Golden Ending, the two acknowledge that they both indeed had a point and finally reconcile.
  • Shin Megami Tensei: This is the cause of the Forever War at the center of the series. It's easy to dismiss Lucifer's Forces of Chaos and YHVH's Forces of Law as being Knight Templar extremists, especially since they're very With Us or Against Us about it. Likewise, either will create one terrible future or another if they're allowed to triumph. Yet the entire point of the "Law Hero" and "Chaos Hero" characters is to demonstrate how this trope makes it very, very easy for otherwise sane, rational people to fall into extremism once circumstances get bad enough. Most of the decisions in the game MUST be Lawful or Chaotic, and the happiest outcome is usually the one where the hero rejects the extremism of either while utilizing the better qualities of both.
  • The Touhou Universe Compendium Symposium of Post-Mysticism is about a conference between the new powers that have arrived to Gensokyo discussing how best to manage the danger and chaos of the region, each naturally claiming that their temple is the best one to lead, but each have some credence to their argument. Kanako is right that lacking a symbol or being to put their faith in leaves many of the inhabitants lost and listless. Byakuren is right that youkai are often treated unfairly by humans and need an advocate to protect them. And Miko is right that only with strong leadership can Gensokyo's humans ever move forward or advance in any way. But ultimately Marisa is right that none of the three have any idea how Gensokyo works and them trying to radically change it will only end in disaster.
  • In Pokémon Black and White, Team Plasma are the villains less because of their intentions (well, the intentions of most of the members, anyway) and more because of the fact that they're extremists who genuinely want to do good but are going about it the wrong way aside from their true leader, who is manipulating them as part of a plan to take over Unova. It's made clear in the game that some trainers really do abuse their Pokémon, but many respect their partners. While Team Plasma's plan to create separate worlds for humans and Pokémon is wrong and would probably cause society to collapse, some people really shouldn't be trainers.
  • The Injustice games and tie-in comics have this between the Regime and Insurgency, led by Superman and Batman respectively. The Regime choose to become Darker and Edgier, doing things like abandoning Thou Shalt Not Kill and deciding to Take Over the World ala the Justice Lords, but do end up improving the world with their actions. The Insurgents meanwhile fight the Regime even before they start becoming morally dodgy, motivated more by Batman's fears of what could happen rather than actual concerning behavior and it gets pointed out to Bats that keeping to traditional superhero methods completely has become impractical at best. But Batman winds up Properly Paranoid because the majority of the Justice League wind up Jumping Off the Slippery Slope and becoming much worse. Oh and the inciting incident for the this divide? The Joker tricked Superman into killing Lois Lane and nuking Metropolis, leading Superman to kill him in retaliation.
  • This is the reason that the Dragonsong War from Final Fantasy XIV lasted for as long as it did. The original King Thordan and his knights launched an unprovoked attack on the great wyrm Ratatoskr, killing her and consuming her eyes for the immense amount of aether they contained. Her brood brother Nidhogg, was absolutely enraged by such treachery and launched a thousand year long campaign against Ishgard as a result. On the one hand, Archbishop Thordan VII mentions that what Thordan I did was absolutely unforgivable, and Nidhogg's rage at his sister's undeserved death is entirely understandable. On the other hand, he's also completely right to point out that the people of Ishgard's present don't deserve to suffer for the crimes of their ancestors, and that Nidhogg is so consumed by his need for vengeance that instead of just wiping out Ishgard like he could have at any point in the past millennium, he just drags out a bloody conflict that ruins the lives of countless innocent people and dragons. In order for things to truly improve for Ishgard, both sides need to be permanently dealt with.
  • In Deltarune, Ralsei is against fighting or harming anyone, ever, while Susie thinks that fighting is the only way to go. Over the course of the story, they're both vindicated. There are moments when Susie attacking everyone makes matters worse, and since most enemies can be spared peacefully, there's really no reason for it. However, Ralsei naively falling for an I Surrender, Suckers from the Big Bad nearly gets everyone killed. Ralsei ashamedly apologizes, admitting that they can't afford to be so soft to everyone. Susie then admits that she was wrong, too — using violence without a second thought wasn't working, either.
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 2 has this with Rex and Mythra's argument at the beginning of Chapter 4. While Rex is right not to let the bad guys get a hold of her for their own nefarious goals, Mythra is also right about not wanting to be awakened due to her dangerous power level.
  • In Bravely Second, you unlock jobs from the first game by completing sidequests which always feature two of the Eternian Jobmasters deadlocked in some argument, forcing you to choose who to side with (with you geting the job of whoever you don't side with after beating them in a fight). Both sides' arguments tend to be either equally compelling or equally stupid, depending on how sadistic the choice in question is. For example, the first such sidequest makes you choose between returning a water-producing magic gemstone to its pedestal so that it can continue to provide much-needed water to the people of the desert, or giving it to the nearby university for the purposes of researching a new kind of energy that can potentially benefit the entire world.
  • A lot of times in Dino Crisis you are forced to side with either Rick or Gail, with Rick believing they need to prioritize saving the lives of their teammates at any cost and that the mission is F.U.B.A.R. at this point, and Gail believing they need to pragmatically look out for themselves or they will just die as well and that the mission still stands. The problem isn't that either of them are wrong, in fact they both raise entirely salient points, the problem is you're the one who has to pick a side and there's no happy medium.
  • In Shinrai: Broken Beyond Despair, a conflict emerges midway through the story when the nine surviving guests discuss whether Momoko was killed or committed suicide, and in the former case, whether one of them is a murderer. Rie is unwilling to suspect any of her friends, least of all her best friend Runa, whereas Taiko believes that unless the group is willing to do just that, they won't find out who the killer is. On the one hand, Taiko is correct one of the ten guests is a murderer. On the other hand, Rie is right about Runa being innocent, not to mention how Taiko jumping to conclusions and suspecting that Kamen is guilty after Taiko's best friend Kotoba is killed/badly burned suggests that the two are Not So Different when it comes to being irrational about their friends. Complicating matters is the fact that in truth, Momoko actually faked her death, later killing Hiro and leaving Taiko to die before actually hanging herself, a possibility no one considered.

    Web Comics 
  • In Dinosaur Comics strip 635, T-Rex is asked what God thinks about intelligent design:
    T-Rex: He says — there's some merit to both sides of the issue?
  • In The Seer, Jeff the Killer is fully prepared to destroy the Scarecrow even after she claims she can explain herself. When Korbyn tries to stop him, he tells her that they can't rule out the possibility that Scarecrow is lying. While Korbyn concedes that he has a point there, she goes on to tell him that they can't just jump to that conclusion without hearing her side of the story first.
  • In El Goonish Shive, Magus makes the argument that Ellen likely originally identified as male but was unreasonably forced to become and stay a woman. He points out that no one had bothered to find out if Ellen actually enjoys being female or had just convinced herself she is meant to be because there's no other choice. Elliot makes the argument that assuming Ellen actually feels this way despite what she says based on one interpretation of the situation is also wrong and referring to her with male pronouns is disrespectful. Word Of God says that Magus conclusion is wrong but his point isn't.

    Web Original 
  • The Jubilee Media series Middle Ground involves three people from each of two demographics or identities that fall on either side of a traditional conflict. A series of statements is read out, with all six participants directed to indicate (and discuss) their agreement or disagreement with each statement. Jubilee makes a point of never taking sides.
  • Honest Trailers did this with the trailer they made for the divisive Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
    Narrator: Get ready for the battle of the century between critics and fans, that had the movie's most rabid supporters sending out death threats, while its harshest critics refused to admit that anything about it was cool, even if you'd be lying if you thought this wasn't awesome (shows Batman's fight in the warehouse) and this wasn't ridiculous.
    Superman: S-save... M-Martha...

    Western Animation 
  • The Simpsons:
    • In "The PTA Disbands" when Principal Skinner and Mrs. Krabappel are trying to convince the parents at a PTA meeting of their respective positions. Mrs. Krabappel argues that Skinner's budget cuts are harming the education the parents' children are receiving, and that they need the resources to do their job. The parents are inclined to agree with her until Skinner points out that the school is on a very tight budget as it is, and for the school administration to get what the teachers are asking for they'd have to raise the parents' taxes. That gets the parents complaining about taxes being high enough as it is, and the debate between Skinner's and Krabappel's positions ends up going back and forth. The episode ends by Skinner and Krabappel deciding to Take a Third Option and rent out the school's cloakrooms to the prison system to raise extra money, although the writers don't provide an answer to the taxes vs. education quality debate.
    • "The Cartridge Family" does this with the gun ownership debate. On the one side we have Marge, who doesn't want the Simpsons to own a gun because of how dangerous they can be; on the other we have the NRA, who argue that there are valid reasons to own one, like hunting and protecting one's family. However, the point they both agree upon is that guns are deadly weapons that should only be handled by responsible owners; Homer demonstrates an insanely flagrant disregard for even the most basic forms of gun safety, which drives Marge away and gets him kicked out of the NRA. Word Of God is that the writers themselves were very divided on the issue of guns and couldn't decide on one aesop to teach, so they just showed both sides of the argument and basically ended on "people like Homer shouldn't have guns".
    • "Itchy and Scratchy and Marge" very notably doesn't take a side on the issue of whether censorship is good or bad (but it does have the moral of "Be prepared for consequences, hypocrisy, and opposing viewpoints if you choose to stand up for a cause."). Sure, Roger Meyers is a scumbag who doesn't care if his shows influence kids to hurt themselves and others, but he's just a man trying to entertain others. Sure, SNUH is a bunch of Moral Guardians who want to censor even masterpieces for offending their conservative housewife sensibilities, but they're kind of right in that kids should be exposed to real art and not just pop culture trash.
    • In "Mobile Homer", Marge begins obsessively Cutting Corners to save money after Homer is denied life insurance to the point of of making her family live in poverty. Homer confronts her for not being adventurous and controlling the money he worked to earn, but Marge retorts that Homer barely does his job and spends more money than he makes, while she is the one who pays the bills and balances the books. Homer eventually spends all of Marge's nest egg on an RV out of pure spite, resulting in a bitter feud that nearly destroys their marriage.
  • South Park uses the Golden Mean Fallacy a lot to find a middle ground between two opposing sides, ultimately arguing that each side is partially correct, making it all the funnier when this attitude is subverted, such as the NAMBLA episode which has the leader of NAMBLA making a long-winded speech about what is wrong and right followed by a short retort from Kyle and Stan which undoes the speech entirely.
  • The animated TV adaptation of The Lorax does acknowledge not just the Lorax's environmental concerns with the devastation of the forest caused by the Once-ler, but also that a lot of people would lose their jobs if the Thneed factory shut down, showing at least one necessary point to the Once-ler's plans.
  • Doug: After completing his last Quailman comic, Doug is caught doodling and making fun of Lamar Bone, who really had it coming. Doug knows Bone didn't get his word on his work, and he simply traps Bone by asking if he was immune to the rules he enforces. Bone explains that he wasn't, cue this trope and the deal Bone makes with the students adding a rule that bans Saturday detentions. Bone doesn't like to be made fun of, but his actions can also get him in trouble.
  • Codename: Kids Next Door: This occurs in the ending of Operation: Z.E.R.O.. While Numbah 362 admits that Numbah 1 was right to prioritize the Museum before their Moonbase and for believing in Numbah 0, Numbah 1 admits that she was right too-namely that he was putting himself before his team without whom he couldn't have pulled The Plan off.
  • My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic does like to provide this a fair amount of times, arguably preferring to teach kids friendship is about compromise and respect on both ends to avoid previous unfriendly aesops. "Lesson Zero", "Over a Barrel" and "Sisterhooves Social" are prime cases both sides admit the other has valid arguments and end up taking a middle road.
  • Although the Project Cadmus arc of Justice League does arguably swing a little more towards Villain Has a Point, due to the fact Cadmus undertakes much dodgier things than the Justice League, the show's creators and the majority of viewers agree that this trope applies. Even the Justice League admits that Cadmus does have a point that the League could potentially be hugely dangerous to the people of Earth. On the other hand, the Justice League is also right that Cadmus itself is equally dangerous in potentia, what with the black operations to steal from the Watchtower, the creation of Super Soldiers, etcetera.
  • In The Legend of Korra, Book 4 villainess Kuvira refuses to give control of the Earth Kingdom (Renamed as the Earth Empire) to Royal Brat Prince Wu because he'd end up a Puppet King beholden to foreign powers. While her detractors see her logic, they're not going to forget that Kuvira 'united' the Earth Kingdom through oppression and force any time soon.
    • Prince Wu proceeds to prove both sides wrong by immediately abdicating and splitting the Earth Kingdom into multiple democratic states.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars: The series doesn't go into too much depth on the politics of the Wars, but they do go into more than the films did. The Republic has a point in that the Separatists act like violent thugs most of the time, and announced their defection by trying to conquer the Republic, not to mention being led by an actual Sith Lord. The Separatists, on the other hand, are right in that the Republic really is horrifically corrupt and in the thrall of the galactic corporations, and provide little aid to member planets. This, of course, serves Palpatine's purposes perfectly: no matter which side wins, he can paint them as the heroes and reformat them into the Empire with himself at the head.
  • Gravity Falls:
    • In "Boss Mabel", Stan and Mabel get into an argument on how to run the Mystery Shack. Mabel takes umbrage to Stan's miserly and obnoxious attitude, but Stan believes if you're too nice, people will walk over you. At the end, both are proven correct; Mabel needs to get tough to get any work out of Soos and Wendy, and her liberal refunds policy eats at the Shack's profits. Stan, meanwhile, goes onto a gameshow and loses an easy fortune because he can't be bothered to learn basic manners.
    • In "A Tale of Two Stans", the ongoing feud between Stan and Ford stems from the last major argument they had thirty years ago: Ford had discovered that his scientific research had given Bill Cipher a means of conquering our reality, and wanted Stan's help in hiding his journals; Stan had spent the last few years estranged from the family, either imprisoned or homeless, and was upset to discover that Ford only wanted him back in his life to help him hide the journalsnote . As necessary as hiding the research was, Ford's ego and obsessive focus on the big picture really blew up in his face; the disagreement ultimately led to him getting shoved into the very dimensional portal he was trying to shut down, and in a desperate attempt to save him, Stan spent the next three decades trying to restart the portal. In the present, Ford wants to keep the world safe and believes that Stan shouldn't have risked using the portal just to save him; Stan believes that saving his family was worth anything. Both have a point, and both of them refuse to budge.
  • In Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012), the Turtles get into an argument over how to deal with Leatherhead; Mikey thinks he deserves their sympathy, but the others don't want him in their lair as he's prone to violent rages. Splinter compromises; Leatherhead should be shown compassion, but he should also be kept chained up so his rages won't hurt anyone. "I'm compassionate, not insane."
  • In Steven Universe, Peridot and Pearl get in an argument over who's the better engineer while trying to design a drill. Peridot brings up the fact that gems live in a Fantastic Caste System and that she was made to be a builder while Pearl is a servant. Pearl insists that her origins make her no less skilled, and that her knowledge of Earth actually gives her seniority. By the end of their competition it's made clear that the two are equally skilled.
    • Later on, Connie gets angry with Steven for giving himself up to Homeworld to save her and some other humans from being taken to a People Zoo. She's mainly angry because he left her alone to deal with it himself, thinking that he didn't believe in all their training for situations like this, and then returned and acted like it was nothing and that she should be glad he was back. However, while she has a right to be angry, Steven's actions were justified because one of the Gems who came to take them away used technology powerful enough to stop Alexandrite, and Steven felt that they were outmatched and that the only way to save everyone was to give himself up in exchange for their freedom. He also felt like he should take all the blame because he was partly responsible for their arrival in the first place. Eventually he realises he was acting like a jerk to Connie the day after he came back, but it takes her a while to forgive him.
  • Castlevania (2017): Alucard argues with his father Dracula over his plan to Kill All Humans because the Bishop burned his wife at the stake, pointing out he can't wipe out all of humanity based on the actions of one person. While Alucard is certainly right, Dracula makes a damn good point when he tells Alucard that anyone in Wallachia could have stood up for Lisa, but no one did.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy's Big Picture Show: Eddy and Double D get into an argument in the middle of the film. Double D lashes out at Eddy for his irresponsibility, pride and never listening to him. Eddy fires back at Double D, however, pointing out that for all his supposed moral high ground, he still goes along with Eddy's schemes even against his better judgement and he's the one who built the machine that triggered the Noodle Incident that got them chased out of the cul-de-sac in the first place, to which Double D disputes that they wouldn't have been chased out of town had Eddy bothered to pay attention to him when he warned Eddy against pushing the red button that caused the whole scam to go haywire.
  • As much as it's very clear the titular Zee from The Zeta Project genuinely does have a heart from how he adamantly insists on helping anyone in trouble and never killing, The NSA's fear that he was simply reprogrammed to think he has a heart as part of a Manchurian Agent ploy by terrorists holds real value as well, considering he went rogue during a deep cover operation with the Brother's Day terrorist group. This is thoroughly explored in the two-part episode Wired where Zee and Bennett discuss the very nature of it, and even Zee is left frightened at the possibility that Bennett might actually be right when they find an unidentifiable device inside his head that isn't in his schematic. It's eventually revealed to be a literal conscience module installed by his eccentric creator.
    Bennett: It must be very confusing to you, Zeta. "Am I a weapon, am I not a weapon? Am I in control or am I controlling myself?"
    Zeta: I know what I am.
    Bennett: Do you?
  • In Beast Wars, a lot of arguments arise between Dinobot and the rest of the Maximals over how to accomplish missions or deal with threats, and generally how to do things. Dinobot being a Predacon soldier always favors brutal, swift aggression, lethal force, and focusing entirely on the war, while the rest being Maximal explorers tend to favor brains over brawn, non-lethal force, and making time for actual exploration and even having fun. Rather than taking a "right or wrong" approach it usually boils down to them showing Dinobot that the Maximal's ways are effective rather than superior, and even then the Maximals often acknowledge that Dinobot's plans would have worked better in the end. Though there are times Dinobot is shown as being explicitly wrong, other times arise where the Maximal's plan fails miserably and they begrudgingly fall back onto Dinobot's plan instead.

    Real Life 
  • This is the reason some people prefer to use the Golden Mean Fallacy when considering controversial topics. Giving all sides of an issue equal weight can be flawed however, especially when such a position ignores their respective levels of support and/or factual accuracy.
  • Political power can and frequently does swing back and forth between different parties in democratic countries, as voters decide they like one party's policies at one time and then decide to switch to another party's policies later on, largely due to this trope. Sometimes parties who win elections and form governments end up plagiarizing parts of their opponents' platforms in order to broaden their own appeal in the electorate.
  • Detractors and supporters of Barney & Friends both have occasionally agreed that while several of the series' morals were flawed and the lead character was annoying, it did teach children some valueable lessons and that the message of the widely-mocked "I Love You" (that everybody, regardless of who they are, is loved) was probably the most valueable.


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