It's kind of odd that I created this thread and yet I've never responded in it until now.
In doing so now, I can see a whole lot of postive in it.
Life is how we look at it.. and we ALL look at it through different prisms. My prism is what is right for me and someone else's is what's right for them. I don't think that a H/Hr shipper is wrong, they are just different from me as a R/Hr shipper.
I think (or would hope) that most people do not take offense to a different point of view... what they take offense to is the way that point of view is presented.
That is why I endeavored to create this thread. So that people would have an avenue for presenting their point of view. Whether or not they chose to do so in a civilized and reasoned manner was ( and continues to be) their choice, and very revealing I might add to the kind of person they choose to be. Much more so than their preference for R/Hr or H/Hr reveals who they are.
but back on topic, I wonder how much our choices have to do with how much we identify with a character? Obviously this would be vastly different from male vs. female points of view. I was never swayed by public opinion to like Ron over Hermione. I didn't read the books or watch the movies until 2010 and I am much older than most of the HP generation. I was never influenced by anyone other than my own feelings/opinions regarding the stories (which I read prior to seeing any of the movies). I love Harry as a character... to me he is much like my best friend in life (Henda) whom I consider like a brother to me. That is truly one of the reasons I will never talk down the Harry/Hermione relationship. If my best friend ever loved the same girl that I loved, and I knew that... than the girl is his, if she loves him back... that's how much I love my best friend. I happen to identify more strongly with Ron personally, and I have little doubt that it factors into my affinity for the Ron/Hermione relationship. That's not to say that I have had any kind of crush on Hermione as a character... I don't want to misrepresent that. It's just that I know Ron loved Hermione and I can see from my and his perspective the qualities in Hermione that elicited that love. That is largely what made me want to see Ron and Hermione end up together. *hmmm on edit let me say that I did really love Hermione in the stories, or else in identifying with Ron, I would not have wanted him to be with her if I didn't* (yes... I can be quite confusing and hard to follow I know... welcome to my head... and you think it's hard for YOU?) Some people may separate themselves from characters in a story. I can do that too. There are times though where I identify with a character and I feel close to that character based upon the way I think of myself. Ron was such a character for me.
That is the basis for my wanting to see Ron and Hermione together. I wonder if from the male perspective, those whom identify themselves more closely with Harry prefered the H/Hr dynamic to the R/Hr one, or if in identifying themselves more like Harry they prefered Ginny in the books. That to me is a very interesting question that a lot of guys probably don't/wouldn't delve into.
Back to talking about the ship though and leaving the discussion of my own pshyche...
What I see on both sides of the ship though is support for one's beliefts. That is a great and noble thing. We should stand by our convictions. I'm not super magnanimous in this mind you. I definitely take offense to some of the things that are said against Ron and Hermione and even some of the things that are said in favor of Harry and Hermione. That's because.. unfortunately God/my parents/the Universe... didn't make me perfect. LOL (always looking for someone else to blame... this one *points at self*... haha) IN having my own beliefs and opinions though I TRY to see the other side. There are some parts I can see and some parts I can't. That's why JKR's comment that Harry and Hermione could have been is legit. I can see that too. There is a lot about Harry that Hermione could have fallen for and a lot about Hermione that Harry could have fallen for.
I'll admit that the Draco/Hermione shippers are a BIT of a stretch for me. That said.. if they want to voice there opinions then SPEAK UP DAMN IT ALL! lol Because that's what this is about. I don't understand every perspective, but give me a reason to appreciate it and I can give you that. There are H/Hr shippers in this thread who have done that for me. It hasn't conveted me... but I'm fine with not trying to convert them when seeing their point of view.
It's funny that there is a saying which goes, "Life is compromise"... I mean... REALLY? Is that the case? Because as I've experienced it, that's not always true. There are some things as people that we will always feel differently about. Even with the people we care for the most. You can take the person in the world who is MOST like me and I'm gonna bet I have differences of opinion that I feel strongly about on some things from them. I realize that... (Heck as a passionate New York Islanders Hockey fan I've even dated a New York Rangers Hockey fan in the past... now that took a leap for both her and I at the time) LOL. Life is difference. It's being separate and unique. Even my reasons for shipping R/Hr are different from Katharine's or Vida's or any of the other shippers who might agree with the same end game.
So to all: Keep shipping.. and keep debating. Keep telling us the things that are the reasons for your support of your ship. When you do it, just try and consider that there might be more than one right answer.