Sunday, August 5, 2012
Mad Analysis: What Does "Tolerance" Mean?
Does this name-calling annoy me? You bet it does but only because I would rather not even have to deal with this subject at all. This is why it infuriates me to be called a bigot and a hatemonger and a homophobe in these arguments -because I don’t want to know who is or is not a homosexual in the first place! It would be pretty hard for me to be prejudiced against a homosexual if I had no idea that person was a homosexual and frankly I would prefer it that way. It makes me feel a little persecuted myself that I am not allowed to remain blissfully ignorant about the sexual habits of others. I am a big believer in privacy. What people do in their own homes is their own business. I don’t want to control it, I don’t even want to know about it. I don’t care, don’t know and don’t want to know who is doing what with whom. I really don’t! Yet, I, and the rest of the public along with me, are being forced to address these issues -and I don’t like it. I don’t like having to deal with it and I certainly don’t like being portrayed as the “bad guy” by people to whom I have done absolutely no harm. That seems utterly idiotic to me.
I don’t even understand how opposing gay “marriage” could really be homophobic. To me, that would only make sense if the law said that two homosexual men could not get married but two heterosexual men could, which it doesn’t because that would be silly. In any event, some want their relationships to have the same legal status as that of other legally married people. Why? You don’t need the government to make a commitment to someone and you don’t need the government to give you a license to behave as you please in your own home. The only reason I can see is that these people want government recognition, sanction and effectively the “blessing” of the government of this country which rules on behalf of “we the people”. And that is where I am forced to get involved -forced- in something I have no desire to. By my vote and by my words they want me, through my government and personally if they ever met me, to say what they’re doing is okay. That is what it comes down to. They don’t just want me to let them do it, they want me, through our representative government, to officially and publicly approve of them doing it. I cannot. I will not.
Whenever I dwell on this subject I cannot help but think of a scene in “A Man for All Seasons” in which the soon-to-be-condemned Thomas More says that he does none harm, he speaks none harm and he thinks none harm and if this is not enough to keep him alive then he longs not to live. When it comes to the gay and pro-gay community, if the fact that I do not and have no desire to tell them how to live their lives, that I do not harm them and that I have neither the power nor the inclination to force them to stop doing anything they choose is not enough to keep me from being called a bigot and intolerant -I cannot regard such people as any sort of victims or any sort of oppressed class. If the only way these people will refrain from slandering me and my religion is for me to publicly approve of their actions and call what they do something I do not believe it is, sorry, there is intolerance on display -and it ain’t coming from me. Tolerance is not the same thing as acceptance and calling people names when they will not conform to your way of thinking is the exact opposite of being “tolerant”. I'm sick of it and I'm not going to put up with it anymore. I hereby declare myself entitled to ignore anyone who uses such tactics.