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Sun Feb 10, 2019, 08:16 AM

Is part of being free tolerating the intolerant?



Freedom of Speech. Freedom to Worship. Democracy. The rule of law. Equal rights regardless of race, sex or sexuality. One would hope that this is what defines us as a civilised society.

To tolerate someone or something implies disapproval. I do not like what you do or think or believe but I tolerate you because I am a civilised person who is prepared to share my society with you even though I donít like you. Should we tolerate those that do not believe in equality? Why should we have to? How far should we go in tolerating the intolerant? Surely, we cannot allow people to incite religious or racial hatred, or hate acts based on sexuality etc, however we need to determine where the line is drawn between tolerating the intolerant and protecting the rights of differing communities who are under attack from the intolerant.

One manís intolerance is another manís deeply held beliefs. Of course, that does not necessarily mean we have to accept or even tolerate those beliefs. You are a fascist? Should I tolerate you? Should you be allowed to spout forth your hatred? I am not certain that anyone of us should have to tolerate listening to that level of hate.

We of course need to be careful about Freedom of Speech and perceived notions of censorship but if what the intolerant is saying is undermining the notion of speech itself by undermining certain groups of people and attempting to reduce them to the un-human, it is an invalidating exercise and therefore, surely, cannot be classified as free speech? On the other hand, of course, if we suppress the speech of the hate filled and intolerant, we run the risk of not knowing what they are thinking.

It is a conundrum. But quite frankly, for me? Why the hell should I have to tolerate their nasty? EVER.

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Reply Is part of being free tolerating the intolerant? (Original post)
Soph0571 Feb 10 OP
Voltaire2 Feb 10 #1
riverine Feb 10 #2
Voltaire2 Feb 10 #4
FreepFryer Feb 10 #3
N_E_1 for Tennis Feb 10 #5

Response to Soph0571 (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2019, 08:30 AM

1. There is no conundrum.

A democratic society requires tolerance of a diversity of beliefs. Tolerance is not the goal, a functional democracy is the goal.

A political movement that intends to destroy democratic institutions is, consequently, intolerable.

This isnít complicated.

Fascism is intolerable.

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Response to Voltaire2 (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 10, 2019, 08:34 AM

2. But

The paradox of tolerance is a paradox that states that if a society is tolerant without limit, its ability to be tolerant is eventually seized or destroyed by the intolerant.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paradox_of_tolerance

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Response to riverine (Reply #2)

Sun Feb 10, 2019, 08:45 AM

4. "Tolerance without limit" is nonsense.

We donít tolerate child porn, for example, and nobody is running around yelling about that ďconundrumĒ.

As I said tolerance is required for a functional democratic society, not ďtolerance without limitĒ, instead it is the level of tolerance needed to keep our democratic institutions strong, and we can use those institutions to determine what the limits on tolerance should be.

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Response to Voltaire2 (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 10, 2019, 08:34 AM

3. This. A democracy ought not tolerate antidemocratic factions. They will use liberty to bring tyranny

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Response to Soph0571 (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2019, 08:46 AM

5. The DU koan for today...

Great question Soph, had to deal with almost the same when in the army. Sworn to protect you and your right to your beliefs while I may be in direct opposition.

First thought, but it sounds too glib is, understanding and compassion. Sometimes the reason the *why* a person believes something is more important than the *what* they believe.

Your question will be the fuel for my wifeís and my daily discussion topic for our day. Thank you for that.

Have a beautiful and mindful romp through your day today.

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