The Paradox of Tolerance

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    13 Responses to The Paradox of Tolerance

    1. well, unfortunately most people only agree on that principle as long as Big Evil Hitler and torch-wielding skinheads are taken as an example.
      Replace them with muslims or any other religious nutter and you become the intolerant one
      because religion


    2. The problem with this is that it assumes that if people hear intolerant ideas they will be swayed by them and become intolerant. This is not true. People become intolerant because their opinions are marginalized or they suffer economic hardships and perceive that toleration of some group or political idea is stopping them from succeeding. Trying to keep people ignorant of certain ideas is both arrogant and dangerous and will not end well.


      • I totally agree.
        Only true, unlimited freedom of speech can guarantee a truly diverse and inevitably tolerant society.
        Everyone should be able to speak his mind (but also to told to be wrong/an ass)
        Actions should be condemned (if necessary) not ideas.


      • I completely disagree with this stance. The argument is that if you’re so tolerant that you’ll allow untolerant people to be a part of the discussion, they’ll take over the discussion, using your own tolerance against you.

        That’s what I believe. You can say bullshit about feeling marginalized or suffering economic hardships, and all I have to reply to that is: good. if you believe wiping out an entire race is the option, then you deserve to be marginalized.


        • Tiki, I think you misunderstand me. I am not saying you allow them to be part of the discussion. First, you do not own the discussion or have any authority to decide who gets to be part of it. Secondly, how do they take over the discussion? Do they have a magic spell or something?

          The discussion is just people talking. Tell them they are idiots and why. The reason they often gain power is that people in power spend more time silencing and vilifying opponents than actually trying to find a way to help people.

          By ignoring their problems because you can’t accept their explanation for it is short sighted.


          • It takes two to converse and if one person in the conversations wants to end the freedoms of everyone else in the conversation, it’s not really a conversation though, is it?

            Talk isn’t just talk, it’s how things get decided.


            • When we are talking about decision making at some public level there is not two, there are thousands or millions or conversations and ideas.

              If a small number want some extreme solution then we listen, roll our eyes and collectively move on. If we (collectively) see that some group’s extreme point of view is the product of ignorance or fear then we need to point out the alternative explanations for why their present situation is not due to the reasons they think. What we should not do is silence them and tell them to shut up and yell homophobe, racist, transphone etc. at them, because for every vocal one there may be hundreds (or thousands) of quiet ones thinking the same thing. They are the ones we want to convince because they are the ones that give power to the extremists.

              Most people are reasonable, but if they hear no acceptance of their issues, no one addressing their fears, no one listening to them, even if it is to try and correct them then you will lose in the end.

              During the last presidential election this was very plain. Clinton lost because she shut down conversion. Refused to even acknowledge the humanity of those who were not here core supporters (basket of deplorables). People who wanted to vote for her, could not bring themselves to do so because they felt alienated. They needed a voice of hope and they got a voice of blame from Clinton and so they turned away and did not vote or voted for Trump. The people you are wanting to shutdown still get to vote.


            • Clinton lost because roughly half the country assumed she was gonna win and didn’t bother voting (either that or they were prevented by work schedules intended to keep them away from the ballot box). Trumpy was doing everything he could do to throw the election, short of uttering the n-word. Which his followers would’ve cheered. Also there was this idiot named Stein who thought she stood a chance in hell and proceeded to Nader the thing.

              We’ve TRIED talking to the people who want to bring back sunset towns. We never got anywhere because they took in racism and homophobia with their mother’s milk. They have decided that because they’ve believed that stuff all their life, nothing should ever convince them otherwise. So excuse me if I think less of their humanity.

              We need to get the people who couldn’t be arsed to vote back at the table. Not try to listen to the people who refuse to listen to us when we tell them that 1+1 does not equal 5 no matter how strongly they believe.

              I’m not making up that math shit. Because of a passage in the Bible, some people have the religious belief that the number Pi is equal to three. Not three point whatever, just three. And they tried to pass a state law declaring it so. Fortunately, it got laughed out of the state Senate. But that’s the kind of ignorance we’re up against.


            • And here I thought the rounding of America had to do with peoples weight.


            • the voice of reason.
              Censoring extreme right just makes you extreme left (which, as not everyone is aware, is not Better in any stretch of the imagination).
              Extremes never represent the opinion of the core of the people, or they would not be called extreme.


    3. Yelling “Fire” in a theater, or “Hijack” in a plane is illegal, unless there actually is one.
      Is the speech intent self-serving or tribe-serving, harmful to the well-being of others?
      If so, that isn’t discourse, it is an anti-golden-rule attack, deserving of retribution.
      If you were in an elevator with Hannity, Limbaugh, McConnell, Bush, Cheney, or Trump,
      how would you retribute?


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