Tuesday, June 9, 2015
You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
Tolerance is one of those words curiously flexible of definition when used by the politically correct: we are supposed to allow others have their say.
But it is somehow forbidden to suggest that those others are wrong. Nuts. Completely badgers. A few fries short of a Happy Meal. Even when it is clear that they are.
So, I suggest that we not use this ridiculous euphemism for what the speaker wants - and then I get asked:
"Okay, offer a solution. What word do you propose we use instead of "tolerance"?"
I thought this was more obvious; pardon me. Answer: rather than a term with arbitrary definition prone to abuse, we should first look to how we conduct public affairs, and then insist that government is a business with the unique duty of treating everyone equally before the law and to guarantee the same set of rights to every individual.
Note then that individuals have the freedom to associate - they can do what they wish so long as no law is violated.
These two things are seperate.
We should show that government has no business acknowledging religion, because the principle of equal treatment before the law, combined with the difficulty of defining a religion, would bring government to a stop if it were to commemorate every religious holiday and practice.
Some say that "tolerance" isn't a code-word for anything, that it just means, "live and let live".
I get this from debate on online forums, where some ardent Christians show they are fearful of losing influence in American government. It's not enough for them to practice their religion freely. They must have endorsement, and official approval of their preaching everywhere they go. It would be useful to take another tack than tell them "tolerance, tolerance" for not only the above-stated reason, but to disallow the next logical leap: that only those in a superior position are empowered to "tolerate" anything - such as the practice of those faiths lesser than Christianity, i.e., all of those other weird ideas.
The above-cited organizations, regardless of what you might think about their efficacy, are special interests with the aim of increasing their influence. They have no real "divine" mandate to do anything, and the exercise of such power as they might accumulate in government will be (is) exclusive, not inclusive.
Since when should bowing and scraping to a particular invisible entity determine whether you have a voice in government - and the attendant command of government force?