Vocabulary and Definitions

Tolerance – patience, sufferance, forbearance; liberality, impartiality, open-mindedness. TOLERANCE, TOLERATION agree in allowing the right of
something that one does not approve. TOLERANCE suggests a liberal
spirit toward the views and actions of others: tolerance toward religious minorities or alternate lifestyles. TOLERATION implies the allowance or sufferance of conduct with which one is not in accord: toleration of graft.

Everywhere we go today we hear the term “tolerance”. We are told that our own opinions must be reined in to show tolerance for others. But, from what I have experienced those who speak so strongly of tolerance either don’t know the meaning of the word or else they desire to change its meaning.

The definition above is a dictionary definition of the word tolerance. Simply put it means allowing the views and actions of others that one does not approve. But most of what I see is that those who have the liberal views which they insist others tolerate are not asking for those who disapprove to allow them the right of their alternate behavior but instead what they really seem to desire is for everyone to celebrate their alternate opinion or behavior and not speak out against it.

Independent opinions are discouraged in the name of tolerance. Those who have the alternate opinions or actions speak out loudly, all the while proclaiming they have been discriminated against merely because others disagree with their alternate opinions or actions. When those who hold traditional opinions or actions try to speak they are told they are being narrow-minded and intolerant just because they disagree.

As we can see from this definition above, tolerance means that one allows the opinions or actions of which they disapprove. It does not mean they agree, nor does it expect them to celebrate those liberal opinions or actions.


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