We need a nationwide effort to expose the way tolerance has been used as an agenda of power to coerce society to conform to certain ways of thinking on debatable issues.
In my role as a political columnist, I am considering starting a campaign titled Restore True Tolerance to America.
My motivation comes from the gratitude I feel for the freedom we’ve experienced in our country and the costly sacrifices made to protect those freedoms.
Tolerance has clearly been the most emphasized social standard for the last several decades.
Perhaps it was originally aimed at replacing the ugly sectarian and segregationist thinking that hurt our country with a shared commitment to respect and civility for all.
As a virtue, tolerance is necessary to a diverse society of ethnic, religious, ideological and lifestyle differences. Tolerance is not just “putting up with differences,” but also truly respecting others despite differences. Tolerance, as a virtue, shines most when people deeply disagree but treat each other with respect.
Society suffers when people do not respect each other on lawfully permitted differences. But somewhere along the way true tolerance was replaced with a counterfeit operating under the same name. The new version demands agreement not respect, and the results are eroding our freedoms.
Tolerance now feels more like a strategy of power being used to control people.
On many issues the public largely feels like we are given a choice between agreeing with a set of politically approved ideas or being labeled intolerant or even a hateful bigot. This is the tone that now dominates political debate, and both sides have been guilty.
I am not suggesting that it’s easy to protect unity in the kind of diversity we have in our country. But I know that we simply can’t promote unity by forcing everyone to see things one way under a threat of being demonized for disagreeing. I believe most people have had enough of this distortion of tolerance.
- Are you tired of being told what to think and say on certain issues?
- Do you feel forced to pretend you agree on too many sensitivity issues?
- Does tolerance feel more like a strategy to silence you than a virtue to free you?
- Do you feel like there are a growing number of sensitivity police trying to control our country?
The practice of zero tolerance on sensitivity issues has resulted in a long list of absurd punishments — even of children in our schools. Hate laws are being used to enlist thought police to read motives where they do not exist. A growing number of people are being sued for following their long-held religious and moral convictions.
I am grateful to live in a country that has largely moved past the days of racial and gender sectarianism. We must protect people from discrimination based on matters of nature beyond their ability to control or change. I am not suggesting that we are completely victorious in these areas. But, like most people, I am tired of those who refuse to celebrate our advances out of a desire to be seen as victims to whom society is in debt. We also need more thoughtful discussion about what we mean when we say “equality for all.”
We need a wake-up call to what’s happening in our country. Forced agreement on debatable issues threatens true tolerance and violates freedom. The virtue of tolerance functions where there is disagreement with respect. Intolerance forces people to pretend they have no differences.
If we care about freedom, we need to promote respect, honor and neighbor love — true tolerance. We also must equally reject coercion and manipulation.
We’re headed for a lot of trouble if we fail to restore true tolerance in our country.
Want to join the campaign?
It would be a public and media campaign to restore tolerance and freedom to our Country before it’s taken over by those who are using tolerance as a strategy of power to control people. I am in the early stages but thinking about using every medium of communication possible to bring this message to every corner of this great country.
Focus on Restore True Tolerance to America could be through:
- Websites and Blogs
- Web casts and commercials
- Posters, bumper stickers, signs, mailings, t-shirts, mugs, etc…
All funds would be used for production and promotion costs of the campaign to restore tolerance and freedom to America. If interested,