Ain’t none of us got “free thought” by which I mean none of us are free of influence. We are not isolated. Being apart of this world means being influenced by it. But we all have the ability to think for ourselves if we choose to.
We have to actively learn as much as we can and form an opinion based on real data and actual facts. We have to check our privileges. We have to understand our biases. We have to unlearn untruths and distortions of truth. We have to have a grasp of the past. We have to understand Power and who wields it and the multitude of ways it is levied against us. We have to understand our own power, or lack thereof, within the social structure. We have to continue to learn, unlearn, reevaluate, and reconsider everything all the time because nothing is static; things are evolving all the time and we have to evolve our thinking with it.
I know my thoughts are not free from influence but I actively work to recognize all the ways I can be influenced and to combat that with knowledge.
And, what I lack in knowledge, I make up for in shutting the fuck up.