Dear Social Justice Activists: Stop using the word "tolerance"
Arts Entertainment

We Need To Stop Using The Term 'Tolerance' When It Comes To Politics

We're using the word "tolerance" to replace "love".

83
We Need To Stop Using The Term 'Tolerance' When It Comes To Politics
https://www.maxpixel.net/People-Us-Protest-Posters-Immigrants-Rally-2590766

Recently in a religious studies class for Sikhism, our teacher explained the idea of tolerance vs. love. In Sikhism, love for all human beings in stressed as opposed to tolerance. I realized that many of us use the word tolerance to promote equality and other social justice aspects of society, however, tolerance is simply NOT the right word.

Today, in American society, while combating hate crimes and all discrimination, we tell people to be tolerant. We use that word in conversations, essays, Facebook posts, and newspapers. But we all fail to realize that in reality, we don't want tolerance--we want LOVE for all of humanity equally.

If you simply google the term "tolerance" here's what you get: the ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular, the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with. I would like to place the emphasis on "to tolerate something" which translates to "having to deal with."

When we as a society say that we should be tolerant of each other, we mean that we should deal with each other. Specifically, we should "deal" with each other's customs, traditions, diversity, and identity as opposed to loving it and embracing it. However, that's not what anyone wants. The "ultimate goal" for humanity as many propose it that we wish for everyone to be respectful and love each other, resulting in a peaceful society.

Although the idea of respect can be present when being tolerant, a shield stands between you and the other---a shield of "burden." Ultimately, by dealing with someone else you are burdened by what they have to offer, so you only "deal" with it and don't push further to understand why a certain tradition exists, or how to respectfully be apart of it, etc.

We slap on the word "tolerance" to anything we can use to promote social justice, but to my dear activists, that's simply not the right word. To put it in perspective: you're giving Christmas cards to all your teachers and you know your teacher who is Muslim doesn't celebrate Christmas, so you just don't bother to give her one. That's tolerance. However, if you had searched online what your teacher practices around this season, you would get them a card signifying that holiday or you would give them a card that said "happy new years!" -- that is love and respect and appreciation. That is what we want from each other.

Tolerance is a step in the right direction because it promotes the idea that "I don't like you but I respect you." That's the beginning. Next would be to emphasize, "I will try to like you and understand you." Humans shouldn't be "tolerating" one another especially based on religion, race, creed, caste, sex, or gender. You tolerate your annoying friends, or you tolerate when someone talks forever, or you tolerate it when someone gives you a gift and you don't like it. But you do NOT "tolerate" other humans because of who they are. It's ridiculous.

We need a revival of love, acceptance, and appreciation in society. We need to start using these words with brighter and more inclusive connotations to start to describe how we want society to really be. Given the current political events, it is important for people to understand these concepts and not just "tolerance" in order to be an effective voice in social justice activism.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Swoon

119 People Reveal How The Pandemic Has Affected Their Love Lives, And Honestly... Relatable

"I haven't been able to get out of the 'talking phase' with anyone."

The reality is, there's no part of life the pandemic hasn't affected. Whether it's your work life, your home life, your social life, or your love life, coronavirus (COVID-19) is wreaking havoc on just about everything — not to mention people's health.

When it comes to romance, in particular, people are all handling things differently and there's no "right way" of making it through, regardless of your relationship status (single, taken, married, divorced, you name it). So, some of Swoon's creators sought out to hear from various individuals on how exactly their love lives have been affected since quarantine began.

Keep Reading... Show less

Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B just dropped the hottest summer single yet. It's called "WAP" and we're going to get into all the intoxicating lyrics.

This song empowers females and their sexuality. These women put the ridiculous music industry female beef to bed, and I mean tucked away in a coma.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

How To Write Down The Holy Grail Recipe Everyone Begs You To Make

Because everyone has a signature cocktail, cake, or pasta they bring to every potluck.

NBC

From back when I used to bring my mom's classic white chocolate chip cookies to preschool on my birthday to now stirring up my signature tequila cocktails at every friends' barbecue, I've always had a couple of standby recipes in my culinary rotation.

Keep Reading... Show less
Adulting

Meet My Cat: Cheshire, The Stray Turned House Cat Who Lives in Michigan

I never considered myself a cat person, but Chess immediately stole my heart.

Madelyn Darbonne

In 2016, a stray cat gave birth to a litter of three grey kittens on my aunt and uncle's property. I had never considered myself to be much of a cat person, but these furballs immediately stole my heart. I got to watch them grow up until they were old enough to leave their mother's side.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

How To Binge-Watch A TV Show —And Then Write A Review About It

Writing your favorite and least favorite things about a show could not be more fun.

Photo by Mollie Sivaram on Unsplash

Looking for a new show to binge? Stop scrolling through your options and listen.

Sometimes a good show doesn't come down to the genre or the actors involved, it comes down to the fact that it is simply a GOOD show. If any of these things sound appealing to you, you should definitely watch.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

11 Reasons Why Getting A Cat Is The Best Thing You Can Do For Your Mental Health

Cats may mess up your puzzles but they'll always love you unconditionally — as long as you have some catnip, that is.

Scout Guarino

Alright, everyone, it's time to stop spreading the rumor that all cats are mean, aloof, and hate everyone. Like dogs, each cat has its own personality and tendencies. Some like a lot of attention, some like less — each person has to find the right cat for them. As for me, my cats Bienfu and Reptar have seen me at my worst, but they've also helped pull me out of it. They're a constant in my life and they give me the strength to get through the day in spite of my depression, and there's even scientific evidence to support it!

Keep Reading... Show less

I've been bleaching my hair since I was in seventh grade. Yes, you read that correctly, seventh grade. That's nearly 10 years of maintaining a very light shade of blonde that too-often brings about dryness and brittle strands.

Keep Reading... Show less

Chances are if you're here, you're probably interested in writing an open letter. Yay! We're excited to have you.

Of course, not all open letters are created equal. In fact, there's a recipe to writing one for Odyssey that'll get featured on one of our many verticals. When it comes to Swoon specifically (for those new around here, that's our dating and relationships vertical), we receive dozens of open letters each month, many of which are all very similar.

Keep Reading... Show less

With a new phone comes great responsibility: Do not break it! And the best way to do that is with a case. However, picking a case can be a challenge. No need to fret, I am here to help break down some of the best cases for the new iPhone SE 2020. Honestly, I think it's going to be impossible to choose!

Keep Reading... Show less

To some who have been out of the dating world for a while, it can be hard to get back into the swing of things after being single for some time. So, I asked 26 people what they think is important to know before looking for love again, here's what they had to say.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments