Because the philosophy underlying the American founding is a tolerant one — because, that is, it grows out of a Christian worldview — America tends to expand its zones of tolerance over time. That’s how underlying philosophies work: they slowly challenge a society to live out the meaning of its creed.
So, in the 1950s, after fighting a war against racist, Nazi monsters, Americans brought fresh vigor to their examination of their own racism and began to purge themselves of racist attitudes and policies that had poisoned our history. Likewise, in the ’70s and ’80s, when birth control and other technology made it easier for women to step beyond the bounds of their traditional roles, Americans began to accept the idea of women in the workforce and in positions of power. Today, the AIDS crisis has given us new sympathy for gays, and science is in the process of giving us a better understanding of the origins of sexual preference. In consequence, we are wrestling with questions of how to broaden our definitions of love and relationship without damaging the social fabric that has brought us so far.
So it is and so, in my opinion, it should be. But it does not in any way follow that we should therefore accept the worst, lowest and most despicable and anti-social behaviors from people simply because they belong to a group that may sometimes feel restricted or excluded.
The Left tells me it’s wrong to be suspicious when a black punk wearing a hood and loose pants slouches into my neighborhood? The Left tells me to listen with respect to the destructive deceptions of con-men like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton? The Left tells me not to fight back when some shrill, man-hating feminist virago goes on the rampage? They tell me not to be judgmental when I witness a young woman getting herself drunk enough to accept being used like a piece of meat by any young man without the virility to escort her safely home? And now the Left tells me I should not look askance at some gay weasel who abuses the privilege of speaking to young people by unleashing a foul-mouthed display of hatred, prejudice and rage?
Well, thanks, but no. The Left has consistently used the good of expanded American tolerance to protect and promote the worst behaviors in those it sees as victims of prejudice. This suggests to me that the purpose of leftist tolerance is not tolerance at all. The Left’s purpose is rather to use our tolerance as an excuse to attack those institutions that have protected our liberties from their statist controls. Power is what they want — and “tolerance” is only the hammer they use to get it.
Myself, I welcome people of all sorts into the full benefits of life in this still-great nation. But I accept thuggery from no one.