I am sure you have seen these bumper stickers plastered all over liberal hippy scum cars. Right? They are usually right above the big “Namaste” sticker. Every time I see one of these stickers I cringe with disgust. I cannot stand that we (Yes, I am part of the liberal hippy scum culture) have allowed this idea to pervade our thinking to the point where “tolerance” is a sought after ideal.
Until last week, I had never met another liberal that was as upset as I was about this bumper sticker. Then, at our weekly religious study, a friend brought it up and voiced many of the same problems that I have.
So…What is your problem with the tolerance sticker, you ask?
The problem is that tolerance is low on the good vibes totem pole. I really don’t want people to tolerate me. Frankly, if you think to yourself, “I tolerate her.” Please, just be with someone else. I don’t want your tolerance. I can tolerate a stinky fart. I can tolerate someone biting their toenails and spitting them in the sink. I can tolerate a car alarm going off incessantly. Do I want any of those things around me? NO. Do I like any of those things? NO.
Tolerance implies that you do not have good feelings. In fact, the very definition of “tolerate” is to allow the existence, occurrence, or practice of (something that one does not necessarily like or agree with) without interference. To accept or endure (someone or something unpleasant or disliked) with forbearance. YUCK! I don’t want any of that.
I want compassion, empathy, acceptance, delight, joy, love. I want others to treat me the way they want to be treated and vice versa. I decidedly, do not want to be tolerated. That is just sad.
So….why are the liberals to blame?
Why? Because we have accepted this line of bull. We have allowed Christians and secular humanists alike to transplant love with “tolerance.” We are in a society that has accepted this back assward bull in so many arenas. I mean, really? The liberal acceptance of the oxymoron “religious right” speaks volumes. It is doublespeak. We are living in Orwellian times where you can treat the poor like garbage, believe in carrying a weapon that could kill someone, loathe immigrants and still profess to follow the Prince of Peace…..Have they read the Sermon on the Mount? So…again, you ask, why are the liberals to blame? They don’t want to treat the poor like scum who deserve their just desserts. They don’t think everyone ought to be armed. They are fighting the good fight. The problem…you see…is tolerance. We tolerate this. We espouse tolerance and we think this tolerance makes us good people. When you tolerate hate mongering…you are to blame.
Just recently..in the very same group where I found my friend who loathes that stupid bumper sticker for the same reasons I do…there was a conversation about harboring hateful beliefs about others (homosexuals, Muslims, immigrants, etc.) I posited that there were only three options for these people, in my book.
- They are cruel.
- They are ignorant.
- They are stupid.
Any conservative hate monger can be slotted into one of these groups. Another member of the group went on the general liberal “tolerance” defense. Wait…we can tolerate this hate if we look at it as if they are afraid or angry. What? And a single mother on food stamps isn’t afraid? Liberals aren’t angry or afraid? I guess if you are a rich liberal you have nothing to fear, or do you? Maybe we ought to be more afraid, afraid that these hateful beliefs will infiltrate our society more than they already have. Maybe we ought to be afraid that our children will take in these filthy beliefs and throw their weight behind them. Maybe we ought to be afraid that one of our own children will be bullied or beaten up by these hate mongers.
You know what? Maybe they are afraid. That doesn’t make a person who hates homosexuals or Muslims, or Jews, or Mexicans, or poor people any less cruel, ignorant, or stupid. Just because you are afraid doesn’t mean you aren’t cruel in your fear. It is how we deal with that fear that determines our character. I am afraid. I am afraid we won’t have money to pay rent next month. I am afraid we will run out of food and my son will go hungry. I don’t channel that fear into taking away from others. I don’t turn that fear into loathing and mistrust.
So….if you are reading this and you are adamant that your conservative beliefs do not make you cruel, ignorant, or stupid. I don’t believe you, especially, if you also claim to be a Christian. The way you vote is the antithesis of everything our Lord taught. You better check yourself before you wreck yourself. You are not only cruel, ignorant, and/or stupid, but also a raging hypocrite. Being cruel, ignorant, and/or stupid doesn’t mean you can’t change. There is hope in Christ. Study the red letter. Pray for a broken heart and a contrite spirit. This is God’s favorite prayer…the prayer to be kind and loving, the prayer for an empathetic heart.
In the alternative, if you are a liberal and still maintain the ideal of “tolerance,” you should also check yourself before you wreck yourself. This tolerance notion, applied to hate, allows it to flourish. It gives them the out of fear…and can’t all us liberals get all gooey about that? Stop allowing fear to be an excuse for cruelty, ignorance and/or stupidity. It is not. We all feel fear, it is a human condition. It is what we do with that fear that makes us real. Stop this “tolerance” ideal. If you don’t we are to blame.