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We “tolerate” mosquitoes. But we should accept people.

"What you’re about to see are hundreds of men across two sports not merely tolerating a gay player because he’s a peer in their league, but actually accepting him because he’s their friend." Former NFL linebacker, current sports analyst, and long-time equal rights proponent Scott Fujita writes about 'Michael Sam, Jason Collins paving the way for a better workplace, world'.
posted by komara on Feb 26, 2014 - 11 comments

"Remember – language is the battleground of humanity."

In the Shadows. The healthcare and human rights challenges of the LGBT populations of Malawi -- where homosexuality is outlawed. Via
posted by zarq on Oct 28, 2013 - 1 comment

Racial Slur or Honorific?

The Other Redskins. 62 US high schools in 22 states currently use the name "Redskins" for one of their sports teams. 28 high schools in 18 states have dropped the mascot over the last 25 years. As public pressure continues to intensify on the Washington Redskins football team to change their name -- one many consider a racial slur that disparages Native Americans -- similar debates are being waged in towns across the country about their local high school teams.
posted by zarq on Jul 2, 2013 - 183 comments

"I thought I was the only gay person in the world for a long time."

The county where no one's gay. The 2010 Census of Franklin County Mississippi shows no same sex couples. (pdf). CNN videographer Brandon Ancil and human rights columnist John D. Sutter tried to determine if the census was wrong, and see if they could find gay men and women willing to speak about "what keeps them hidden." Video
posted by zarq on Mar 30, 2013 - 54 comments

"I would not choose to be any one else, or any place else."

"Look, goddamn it, I’m homosexual, and most of my friends are Jewish homosexuals, and some of my best friends are black homosexuals, and I am sick and tired of reading and hearing such goddamn demeaning, degrading bullshit about me and my friends." - Merle Miller.
In 1970, two years after Stonewall, Joseph Epstein wrote a cover story for Harper’s Magazine, Homo/hetero: The struggle for sexual identity, that came to chilling conclusions: "I would wish homosexuality off the face of this earth." His incendiary language prompted author/journalist/writer Merle Miller to come out of the closet in the New York Times Magazine, with an angry and poignant plea for dignity, understanding and respect: "What It Means to Be a Homosexual." 40 years later, that essay helped inspire the launch of the "It Gets Better" campaign. Via [more inside]
posted by zarq on Oct 17, 2012 - 62 comments

“Maybe you should never transition."

"We are seeing the emergence of a new variation on an old, cissexist theme: 'No, it’s not a good time for you to transition. This is going to be so hard on us. Oh won’t you wait or reconsider this choice for us normal people?'. Their subtext is plain and unambiguous to nearly every trans person: 'Maybe you should never transition.'" [more inside]
posted by cp311 on Jan 22, 2012 - 184 comments

An Era in Ideas

An Era in Ideas. "To mark the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, The Chronicle Review asked a group of influential thinkers to reflect on some of the themes that were raised by those events and to meditate on their meaning, then and now. The result is a portrait of the culture and ideas of a decade born in trauma, but also the beginning of a new century, with all its possibilities and problems." [Via]
posted by homunculus on Aug 13, 2011 - 11 comments

America's Next Great Civil Rights Struggle

The New Republic examines what they're calling "America's Next Great Civil Rights Struggle" and asks, "What will it take for America to accept transgender people for who they really are?" [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 29, 2011 - 173 comments

Diversity in One's Own Backyard

World Values Survey -- who wouldn't you mind living next door? [more inside]
posted by modernnomad on Oct 3, 2010 - 79 comments

"This nation was founded on the principle that the government must never choose between religions, or favor one over another."

"On September 11, 2001, thousands of first responders heroically rushed to the scene and saved tens of thousands of lives. More than 400 of those first responders did not make it out alive. In rushing into those burning buildings, not one of them asked 'What God do you pray to?' 'What beliefs do you hold?'"
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has recently defended the planned Cordoba Initiative Islamic Community Center and Mosque to be built near Ground Zero against critics. Yesterday, after the City’s Landmarks Preservation Commission voted to allow the demolition of a building that would be replaced by the center, Mr. Bloomberg gave a speech on Governor's Island (the location seems to have been deliberately chosen) in which he eloquently defended religious freedom. (YT: Video) (Previously on MeFi)
posted by zarq on Aug 4, 2010 - 315 comments

"Democracy is stronger than this."

The Anti-Defamation League has been tracking religious extremism for several decades, including anti-Islamic violence in the United States after 9/11. Nonetheless, the organization joined right-wing opposition earlier this week to the construction of Cordoba House, a 13-story Muslim community center and mosque that may be built two blocks away from the site of the former World Trade Center. The ADL's alignment with calls for "refudiation" by Republican celebrities Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich, along with other members of the GOP who are ramping up angry sentiments in voters during an election year, have puzzled and angered religious, political and cultural figures of various stripes, particularly within New York City itself. [more inside]
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Aug 1, 2010 - 446 comments

They call him the "Rabbah Rouser"

“There’s a tremendous amount of anxiety among religious traditionalists that when you take one step toward egalitarianism, the floodgates are open and everything that seemed self-evident will no longer be. Men go to work, and women raise children. If you undermine that, you have lost your whole universe.”

The Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist movements of Judaism have been ordaining women as rabbis for decades, but the religion's most traditional sect, the Orthodox, remains a lone, minority holdout against egalitarianism. Last year, Orthodox Rabbi Avraham "Avi" Weiss (political activist and founder of the controversial, liberal, "Open Orthodox" Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Yeshiva in New York) tried to shake things up by ordaining the first female American Orthodox rabbi. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jul 31, 2010 - 35 comments

Study: Lesbian Parents Raise Better-Behaved Kids

A nearly 25-year study has concluded that children raised in lesbian households were psychologically well-adjusted and had fewer behavioral problems than their peers. Results were published this month in Pediatrics: the Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. (Abstract. Free PDF. Scribd). [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 7, 2010 - 98 comments

Religion and America's Academic Scientists

Science vs. Religion: a new book, Science and Religion: What Scientists Really Think by Rice University sociologist Elaine Ecklund, discusses the results of her detailed study of 1,646 scientists at top American research universities. Among her findings: ~36% of those surveyed not only believe in God but also practice a form of closeted, often non-traditional faith. They worry about how their peers would react to learning about their religious views. Interview with the author from the Center for Inquiry's Point of Inquiry podcast. Also, here's a webcast from an author discussion forum held at Rice University on April 7th. [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 30, 2010 - 89 comments

"No matter what ideas the human mind generates, they must never be quashed."

New Scientist Special Report: Living in Denial. Includes articles by Michael Shermer, founding publisher of Skeptic Magazine [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 28, 2010 - 37 comments

Symbolizing the Threat with Women's Clothes

Recent troubles with Muslim women's clothes have lead to the Quebec Government to begin proposing legislation on the issue of face covering and access to public services. The niqab has become a central symbol in the anti-muslim rhetoric of nationalist parties in Europe (political poster examples: France, Switzerland, and Britain) about the threat Islam poses to tolerant secular societies. [more inside]
posted by ServSci on Mar 30, 2010 - 153 comments

Culture & Barbarism

Metaphysics in a Time of Terrorism. (via)
posted by Dumsnill on Apr 17, 2009 - 39 comments

Gay rights and wrongs

Cynthia Dixon, at the time employed by the University of Toledo, read this Toledo Free Press opinion piece, and wrote this response, which got her fired. Back in May the UT President responded to the growing controversy on local TV. Now Dixon is suing. (text of the suit) [more inside]
posted by aerotive on Dec 4, 2008 - 257 comments

A Viral Antidote for Racism

Tolerance over Race can Spread, Study Says. ...psychologists have been able to establish a close relationship between diverse pairs — black and white, Latino and Asian, black and Latino — in a matter of hours. That relationship immediately reduces conscious and unconscious bias in both people, and also significantly reduces prejudice toward the other group in each individual’s close friends. This extended-contact effect, as it is called, travels like a benign virus through an entire peer group, counteracting subtle or not so subtle mistrust. A matter of hours...hmmmm... that might explain the subject of this thread.
posted by storybored on Nov 7, 2008 - 33 comments

Roger Williams

The First Founder: The American Revolution of Roger Williams. [Via 3quarksdaily]
posted by homunculus on Aug 31, 2008 - 8 comments

Flushing - home of mediocre baseball and Religious Freedom

"“If any of these said persons come in love unto us, we cannot in conscience lay violent hands upon them, but give them free egress and regress unto our town. For we are bound by the law of God and man to do good unto all men and evil to no man.”

Today is the 350th anniversary of the Flushing Remonstrance - a precursor of the Constitution, and "an iconic record of early Dutch colonial government that proclaimed the necessity of religious freedom of conscience and toleration." As this NYT Op-Ed notes, this document originated (and is currently on display) in "the most diverse neighborhood in the most diverse borough in the most diverse city on the planet."
posted by ericbop on Dec 27, 2007 - 22 comments

Then came the funny part. Mr. Majeed keeled over dead.

"The neighborhood of Bab al Sheik dates from a time, more than a thousand years ago, when Baghdad ruled the Islamic world... Ten centuries later, Bab al Sheik is less grand, but still extraordinary: it has been spared the sectarian killing that has gutted other neighborhoods, and Sunnis, Shiites, Kurds and Christians live together here with unusual ease." A NY Times story (by Sabrina Tavernise and Karim Hilmi) about interesting people in an interesting place. (Print version for them as wants one.)
posted by languagehat on Nov 13, 2007 - 15 comments

Spots Before Your Eyes

Spots Before Your Eyes, an award-winning series of animated shorts promoting tolerance and human relations, produced in the 1950s by the American Jewish Committee (at AJC Archives)
posted by LinusMines on Jan 6, 2007 - 4 comments

"Good wishes and better wishes...until you wish for the best!"

A concession e-mail to returning House Rep Satveer Chaudhary from loser Rae Hart Anderson. [via]
posted by bardic on Nov 18, 2006 - 187 comments

Principled Toleration of Religion

Why Tolerate Religion? Brian Leiter's new paper on the philosophical and legal justifications for toleration of religion. From the abstract: Religious toleration has long been the paradigm of the liberal ideal of toleration of group differences, as reflected in both the constitutions of the major Western democracies and in the theoretical literature explaining and justifying these practices. While the historical reasons for the special “pride of place” accorded religious toleration are familiar, what is surprising is that no one has been able to articulate a credible principled argument for tolerating religion qua religion: that is, an argument that would explain why, as a matter of moral or other principle, we ought to accord special legal and moral treatment to religious practices. There are, to be sure, principled arguments for why the state ought to tolerate a plethora of private choices, commitments, and practices of its citizenry, but none of these single out religion for anything like the special treatment it is accorded in, for example, American and Canadian constitutional law. So why tolerate religion? Not because of anything that has to do with it being religion as such - or so this paper argues.
posted by monju_bosatsu on May 30, 2006 - 126 comments

Despotism

Despotism. In 1946, Encyclopedia Britannica and Harold Lasswell produced an educational film about the nature of Despotism. Calls to mind contemporary examples of despotism, and (in view of Lasswell's own views on the subject) raises some interesting questions about the uses and misuses of persuasion and propaganda. Film link via the Prelinger Archive, previously discussed here).
posted by washburn on Mar 16, 2006 - 8 comments

Diversity! Tolerance! Free speech!

Score one for tolerance and diversity. Three-year-old Sophia Parlock cries while seated on the shoulders of her father, Phil Parlock, after having their Bush-Cheney sign torn up by Kerry-Edwards supporters on Thursday, Sept. 16, 2004, at the Tri-State Airport in Huntington, W.Va. Do the smirking people in this photo really feel proud for terrorizing a three-year-old girl?
posted by DWRoelands on Sep 16, 2004 - 58 comments

All are equal before God. On Earth....

Wages of hate - anti-gay attitudes damage the economy - conversely, Gay-tolerant societies prosper. Will GOP anti-elitism and the US religious right make the U.S. a 3rd world country? Paul Craig Roberts argues that we're on the fast track, and a Carnegie Mellon study (title link) shows that culturally repressive attitudes in America are driving away the "Creative" class. Virginia Postrel defines this class differently (manicurists and stone cutters) but in Richard Florida's "Creative Class War" (recently on Metafilter), "America is no long attracting creative workers from abroad because it is seen as an intolerant society". More than artists and programmers are shunning the US - scientists are staying away too. In the US, meanwhile, a bifurcation - Americans are geographically self-segregating, choosing to live with those who hold similar beliefs and values.
posted by troutfishing on Feb 27, 2004 - 61 comments

How about tolerance for all?

How about tolerance for all? These regular protests in Utah (or other LDS-dense populations) don't seem to make much news, though they'd probably be scandalous if performed against other religious groups.
posted by oissubke on Oct 10, 2003 - 133 comments

Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Us

How Important Is Religious Belief In The Definition Of Our Personality? I would say not at all, but Bernard Lewis's essay gave me pause. Bringing it all back home and wondering about MetaFilter's religious breakdown, does the fact that there are far more atheists, Jews (like me) and Mormons here than in the Western population at large, make any difference? Christians get a hard time here, in my opinion. Is it because, as Lewis says: "Tolerance was a much more difficult question for Christians"? Atheists, Jews and Buddhists seem to have a disproportionately large influence. Whereas Muslims, sadly, hardly get a look-in. What does this mean? That is, if it means anything?
posted by MiguelCardoso on Apr 18, 2003 - 62 comments

The Burqa vs. the Wonderbra?

A Sexual Clash of Civilizations? Using data from the World Values Survey, two researchers argue that Samuel Huntington's theory of a clash of Islamic and Western civilizations completely ignores the role of sexual tolerance as an indicator of a democratic society. An interesting point to ponder when Islamic countries and Christian Right activists have teamed up to lobby the United Nations against the expansion of gay rights and family planning.
posted by jonp72 on Apr 11, 2003 - 20 comments

Mix It Up Day

Mix It Up Day is an effort from the people at Tolerance.org to get teens to sit with other social groups at lunch in the cafeteria today. Coming from a racially diverse "inner city" Midwest high school, I've seen how teens will naturally segregate themselves, so this seems like an interesting proposal. Kids who participated seemed excited about the opportunity, but will they keep "mixing it up" tomorrow, next week, as they become adults?
posted by katieinshoes on Nov 21, 2002 - 23 comments

Some much needed words on "tolerism".

Some much needed words on "tolerism". To be tolerant of something or someone doesn’t mean acquiescence, and it doesn’t mean that you can’t speak out in opposition. From a religious perspective, but relevant to all.
posted by aaronshaf on Apr 23, 2002 - 16 comments

This

This is exactly what I was afraid would happen to the hundreds of so-called material witnesses to the investigation of the terrorist attacks. I fear that this is simply a "quieter" internment of many innocent people of Arab descent. How can the government ask for religious and ethnic tolerance while subjecting people to morally questionable treatment?
posted by xyzzy on Oct 15, 2001 - 33 comments

What Became of Tolerance in Islam?

What Became of Tolerance in Islam? This is from a few days ago, but I don't think it has been posted here previously. An Islamic scholar reflects upon the ways in which Islamic culture, "that produced such tolerance, knowledge and beauty throughout its history," has recently been taken over by an "extreme form of puritanical Islam" that "does not represent most Muslims today."
posted by Rebis on Sep 16, 2001 - 3 comments

Yahoo to donate $3 million in free banner advertising for Tolerance.org.

Yahoo to donate $3 million in free banner advertising for Tolerance.org. This ranks up there as one of the coolest things Yahoo has ever done: whenever people search for hate-filled words, they'll get a banner ad reminding them of the effects of discrimination and intolerance. A single banner ad won't change the world, but it certainly can't hurt to spread information about tolerance (via rc3.org)
posted by mathowie on Apr 12, 2001 - 15 comments

"Fire Bryant Gumbel for His Intolerant Remark"?? -American Family Association-- What the hell is going on with people in this country? I can't have an opinion any more? Bryant wasn't being intolerant... He simply didn't like the guy. He was uttering his opinion under his breath when he thought the microphone was off and he was off camera. (It took a lip reader to ascertain what was actually 'mumbled') Must I agree with everyone's opinion ALL the time and actually 'LIKE' everyone all the time? Or what? Do I get a 'timeout'?
posted by chiXy on Jul 5, 2000 - 42 comments

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