from National Review Online
As the Washington Post’s Marc Fisher reported, University of Maryland student Mia Lazarus recently went to buy some chips and juice at the Maryland Food Collective. The clerk at this grocery and sandwich shop in the student union read her t-shirt’s “Baltimore Zionist District” and “I Stand for Israel” slogans and then declared, “Your shirt offends me. I won’t ring you up.”
Exactly how “tolerance” devolved into coddling those who choose to take offense for the slightest of reasons is a question for another day (although decades of experience demonstrates that on-campus tolerance is more frequently understood as the right of “victims” to air grievances than of heterogeneous speakers to be heard). Another question is how and why we’ve allowed identity politics to constrict public spaces.But the pressing problem with the way “tolerance” as touted by too many educators is that it rewards zealotry; while the zealots are understood to be beyond its soggy grasp, the rational and pragmatic are expected to do what is necessary to keep the peace.
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I am reminded of a great Southpark episode when the kids are sent to ‘Tolerance Camp’ where ‘tolerance’ is forced upon the kids with Gestapo like camp counselors. It’s like 1984 when Good is Bad and ‘tolerance’ has now become ‘intolerance.’ It’s screwed up folks!