Posts Tagged tolerance

Forcing ones morals on others

I had a conversation about Prop 8 on Friday night and what has happened since the election.  We discussed what the “tolerant,” no on prop 8 crowd has done since Tuesday’s loss.  But it also involved talking about what our founding fathers meant when they originally set up the constitution.  This was because one of the people that was involved in the discussion is a historian by trade.  He brought up some very interesting points.  The constitution is actually meant to protect minorities.

We all seemed to agree that the LGBT is seeking social acceptance of their lifestyle.  The historian asked, “so is it OK to force our morals on someone else?”  Meaning is it OK for those who think sex should only be something shared between heterosexual couples and force that belief on others?  Humm.  Here is the point that has stuck out with me.  But isn’t the LGBT trying to force their morals on the rest of the United States?  So one or the other group is going to have to accept the others moral code.  For whatever reason I find this to be a profound thought that I have continued to mull over.  I am sure I will continue to do so.

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More eloquent than I

Orson Scott Card recently wrote an article that articulated better then I ever could the idea of tolerance.  It also gave me hope.  We should stand up for what we each feel convicted by.  That is part of the democratic process.  In particular if we truly are tolerant of each other.  I am going to put that parts that apply to tolerance here, but if you like read the whole thing.

…Tolerance implies disagreement — it means that even though we don’t agree with or approve of each others beliefs or actions, we can still live together amicably. When we agree, we aren’t being tolerant, we’re being uniform.

It’s uniformity or submission these former friends wanted, not tolerance at all.

It makes me sad when people are so intolerant that they cannot bear to be friends with anyone who disapproves of some action or opinion of theirs. But I believe that if we could only be friends with people who never disapprove of something we do, we will end up with “friends” who either don’t know us very well, or don’t care about us very much.

…Even if we fail to overturn the current legal movement toward gay marriage, we can treat our opponents politely and kindly, even when they do not extend the same courtesy to us.

…We do not think that any belief system, whether it calls itself a religion or not, should be imposed on other people by law — we won’t impose ours on them, and we won’t let them impose theirs on us or our families.

I hope this gives you some idea of what tolerance really is.  He goes on to talk more about why it is good we have this initiative on the ballot.  Regardless of how it passes it is important the people have an opportunity to have a say.

Instead, we believe that as long as we are citizens of a free country, changes in the laws and institutions of our society should be made only by common consent, after a free and candid discussion.

We would never try to force our beliefs on an unwilling majority, and we hope that our opponents on this issue will have the same respect for democracy and the Constitution.

In fact, I believe that even those who absolutely believe in gay marriage should join us in opposing any law that is forced on an unwilling majority by the dictates of judges. For those that are wise will recognize that once judges are given such power, that power has as much chance of being used against them as for them.

These judges are not unique.  I think other servants of the people have tried to do similar things.  Trying to say they is above the law or the law doesn’t apply to them.  Thank goodness out country has check and balances.  Vote yes to 8.  It is one way we can make sure to keep those checks in place.

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Things are heating up

I just got an email from my friend.  Her neighbor awoke to having the words “vote NO to prop 8” painted on their garage door.  They had a yes to prop 8 sign up in their yard.  Yesterday I heard about someone who awoke to swastikas painted on their yes signs and home.  My friend saw me sign waving with my two little boys the other day and asked if we had rocks thrown at us?  Oh course not.  But she informed me she know of two incidents where that has happened.  Wasn’t it the blacks and people who supported the blacks having equal rights who had rocks thrown through their window, mean signs burned into their lawns….Ironic when it is the opponents to prop 8 who are saying we are bigots.  Possibly it is happening on both sides and I only hear about what is happening to the yes group.

Show some restraint.  Be tolerant.  Let each side express their opinoin.  That is what our country is about.

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Standing up for what is right.

I look around and it seems there are more tv adds, big names and signs for no to prop 8.  Maybe this is because they have big names donating big sums of money.  Regardless I talk with people face to face it seems many are undecided or quietly in agreement with what proposition 8 is about.  Why it is hard to stand up for what you know is right?

Elaine S. Dalton shared to following story in a talk she gave in April of 2008.

A young man I know well was elected to be the student body president at a large university. The university sent him to a leadership seminar where student leaders from across the United States gathered in Chicago, Illinois, to be trained and educated. They participated in an initial game outdoors on the college campus so that they could become acquainted with each other. The students were presented with current issues facing today’s youth and were asked to take a position. In response to the issue presented, they were directed to run to several trees in the grassy area marked “strongly agree,” “partially agree,” “strongly disagree,” or “mildly disagree.”

Toward the end of this exercise, the leader asked, “Do you believe in premarital sex?” Without hesitation, this young man ran to the tree marked “strongly disagree.” To his amazement, he was the only one there! All the other student leaders were laughing and pointing at him and saying, “Oh, Jess, you are so funny. We all know you’re not really serious.” At that moment Jess said he knew exactly what he must do and so he loudly declared, “I’m not funny. I’m serious!” There was a stunned silence, and then the group dispersed, leaving Jess standing alone by the tree. He felt out of place and yes, weird. But he wasn’t weird. He was right. And he was not alone. During the week, many of the student leaders came to him privately and said that they wished they had known years earlier what he knew.”

I think it is hard to stand up and say I agree with Prop 8 because it is not the popular thing, neither is it culturally acceptable not to embrace all peoples actions.  But that doesn’t excuse us from taking a stand when it isn’t popular.

And so I challenge you all to stand up for what is right.  Protect traditional marriage.  Vote Yes to 8.

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