Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Tolerance, part one

Tolerance: a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward those whose opinions, practices, race, religion, nationality, etc. differ from one’s own.
Tolerance is important in today’s society. It is a part of daily life for most American citizens. People scream, “Be more tolerate of this social group!” Or, “You’re really intolerant, you know.” But do we even know what tolerance means?
As a Christian with a conservative view, I often feel my ‘religious’ group is not tolerated. In fact, we are accused of being intolerant! I can definitely see where these accusations come from. In fact, they are true. Keeping in mind that not all Christians see eye-to-eye on things, I feel that I, as a Christian have been misrepresented.
Indeed, I do disagree with many groups in today’s society. In fact, I have good reason to believe that homosexuals and abortionists are hurting themselves.
Now, you don’t have to agree with me that science says abortion is murder and thus very, truly, wrong, but please roll with me, as I am uses this issue as an example in this paper.
Let’s begin with a question. Are you tolerant of drunkenness in your workplace? Keep in mind that the drunkard probably had good reason to drink so much. He probably needed to drown out his problems. And the beer tasted wonderful. So you should let him keep working or hanging around. In fact, you might want to give him some cash for the next time he feels low.
If you are anything like me, you’re most likely thinking, “No way! I’d send him home and advise him to find a counselor other than the bartender!” But hold up. According to our definition, you would be intolerant. You wouldn’t be fair. The drunkard needs the money for his family. You wouldn’t be objective. You would probably be embarrassed by his sloppy behavior. Not to mention the fact that you could smell his breath a mile away. And you most certainly wouldn’t be permissive. The drunken person probably wanted to be at work, and you wouldn’t let him. If you send him home, your actions would not be tolerant.
Similarly, let’s pretend that you agree with me on the subject of abortion. You have seen the scientific evidence and believe that an unborn baby is just as human as you are. You feel that all babies should have a chance to live, including those with disabilities.
That said, you hear that a new abortion clinic is being built nearby. Do you
a) give cookies to the hard workers who are making it possible for unwilling mothers to kill their babies (yes, I realize that’s a biased view)
b) sit by and watch, saying and doing nothing
c) donate extra money to the local pro-life movement, or
d) rush to join the pro-lifers who are staging a silent sit down protest on the grounds of the new clinic.
If you picked c or d, you would be intolerant. And yet, if you picked a or b, you would be allowing murder to happen within walking distance of your house.
I could think of dozens of things conservative Christians are intolerant about: abortion, homosexuality, drunkenness, drug use, immodesty, swearing, and adultery, to name just a few. But we honestly believe that all of the sins listed above are hurtful to not only those performing them, but also to their peers.
To speak for myself, I disagree with using violence to solve the problems above. If a pro-lifer plants a bomb in an abortion clinic, I can guarantee it wasn’t my idea.
Yes, I suppose you could say I am intolerant. But I try to be gentle about it. I want to help others, and stand up for my beliefs. Yet while I would encourage you to embrace the Truth, I would never force anyone to agree with my moral code. I certainly hope that most, if not all, people who claim to be Christians agree with my view point.


  1. holy cud!! did u write that?? or copy and paste from a different article? its pretty cool. idk what i would call myself..maybe...half tolerant and half intolerant. but idk...

  2. Yep, I wrote it. A few weeks ago, actually. I plan to write more on it soon. Thanks for such a high compliment!


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