An experience I had at work may have provided me with an answer. I work for a city as a public employee and served as an alternate representative for the existing union. A faction of the union wanted to bring in an outside union to replace the existing one and made motions at an official meeting to that effect.
Displeased with the manner in which the existing union management attempted to stop the motions by declaring them illegal, I voted with the faction (and on behalf of my regular representative, who bolted from the meeting with several others to try to stop the quorum).
Early on, I felt as though the battle lines were clearly drawn. Even though I contended from the beginning that I simply wanted a vote to be held among all employees in my class to allow choice between the two unions, I was “typecast” by those siding with the existing union as one of “those people.”
I wrote out and sent messages to all voting members of the union explaining my point of view, discussing ways the two sides could compromise and responding to various bits of what I believed to be misinformation by the other side. (Neither side behaved especially professionally in this mess).
What did the other side typically say? They would correct me and insult me if I so much as forgot to identify myself as an alternate. Neither side trusted one another and no one gave an inch.
Throughout this time, each side sent assertions of fact back and forth on the emails and also posted messages on bulletin boards in break rooms. But no member of either side publicly announced that they were convinced of the correctness of the other side's point of view. Why was that?
Because once the lines are drawn and “shots” are fired, people tend to “duck for cover” and line up with their allies. Does anyone really change sides? All we need do to answer that question is to answer this one: Who is the greater villain in United States history – Jefferson Davis or Benedict Arnold?
I could have pounded away at those who opposed a vote with sound arguments on many grounds. In fact, I did. I sent messages of my arguments to the union president, vice president and counsel. In the end, the union management got its way, I left the union and I hear things are back to normal.