I addressed this argument in another thread, but I thought it was worthy of starting a thread of my own over it because I’ve seen this line of argument many times before. It seems superficially convincing at first, but ultimately I must reject the argument advanced by Starving Artist.
Apparently, those who want to advance the cause of tolerance are not allowed to say negative things against those who are intolerant. I couldn’t disagree more. It may seem hypocritical or paradoxical that those advocating tolerance are intolerant towards those who oppose them, but that’s the only way that social progress can be made and social regress averted.
Fundamentalist religion is based on intolerance. “We have the absolute truth, we are chosen by God…everyone else are heathens/infidels.” Until the masses can grow out of it, intolerance is here to stay. Science and education are the answer.
What is meant by “tolerate?” Should we take their rights away? No. Do we have to like them? Of course not. Respecting the right to an opinion does not mean you have to respect the opinion itself. I think the accusations of intolerance by the those are preach tolerance are rooted in a false definition of the word “tolerance.” Wanting to take somebody’s rights away is intolerant. Thinking somebody is an asshole for wanting to take somebody’s rights away is not.
No, we should not tolerate intolerance, but the spiritually advanced should have patience with it.
These are homophonic games. “Tolerate” is not merely the verb form of the antonym of “Intolerance”. To be intolerant is not merely to be “Unaccepting”, and “Intolerance” is really a euphemism for bigotry.
Look, you judge each group on its merits. To be a “Tolerant” person, is merely another way of saying that your rights end where my nose begins.
I think there is often confusion between tolerance and acceptance and approval. You can allow something without thinking it right and even while criticizing it. If someone wants to be an idiot bigot let them. I think limiting their speech is more harmful. However, you are free to call out on it them whatever and to shun them all you want.