Tolerance ≠ Affirmation

I can’t be alone in noticing that when people cry about other people’s lack of tolerance what they’re really complaining about is their lack of affirmation. If someone doesn’t jump on board and support something then they’re said to be intolerant. The truth is that most people have no choice but to tolerate stuff that they don’t like. That doesn’t mean that they have to affirm it and jump on board in supporting it.



7 thoughts on “Tolerance ≠ Affirmation

  1. It depends. If people are making an effort not let people be as they wish (say through political means or intimidation or shame) then they aren’t tolerating them. If however they just don’t agree with someone but do their best to get along without betraying their own convictions then they are being tolerant.

  2. I can’t tolerate the word “tolerance.” Pop culture says it’s supposed to equal acceptance, but that is a cheap substitute for real love. Deep down, people don’t want to merely be tolerated, they want to be loved. Kudos to you for questioning it.

  3. Bryan: What do you have in mind; like X-Men 3? I suppose I can agree with you there; but I don’t really see that being an actual problem when the tolerance issue gets raised. Now if we were in Nazi Germany or something then yeah, definitely.

    Matthew: Thanks, I think. Were you agreeing with me or Bryan? Hard to tell.

    Indy: Good point.

  4. Take the issue of other religions. You can say you’re tolerant of other religions but if you try to pass laws that hurt them (like they can’t build places of worship) or you try to intimidate them so they’ll leave or convert then that’s hardly being tolerant. Did you really just bring up Nazi Germany? ;)

  5. Matthew: Gotcha. That makes better sense anyway! ;-)

    Bryan: Yeah, I’d agree that if you have the power to do something and you try to do it then that’s not tolerance. And you betcha!

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