The Intolerance of the New Tolerance
In his book, The Intolerance of Tolerance, D.A. Carson carefully describes the shift in our culture between the "Old Tolerance" and the "New Tolerance." Under the old perspective, differing points of view were debated, perhaps even heatedly. However, there was a higher principle governing the debate. It goes like this, "I disagree with your view intensely. In fact, I strongly dislike it, but I will defend your right to express it." Up until the last few decades, this viewpoint prevailed, perhaps not so much in academia, but in general. The new perspective of tolerance goes like this. "I am tolerant of everyone who agrees with me. If you don't agree, then you're a stupid bigot. Shut your mouth before I shut it for you." In the great majority of instances, this attitude emanates from left wing extremism. An alarming example of this took place recently at Cal State University, Los Angeles, where a mob of left-wingers blocked the entrance leading to a meeting of young conservatives on campus. The hypocrisy of the crowd was palpable. You could hear the chants, "No hate speech! No hate speech!" "No violence! No violence!" All the while they were blocking the doorway, threatening and intimidating those who wanted to attend, and in a few cases, knocking people to the ground. The biggest cheerleaders in the imbroglio were professors, egging the mob on. What did the administration do? Nothing. We are losing the ability to engage in discussion and debate in a civil manner, and to a very large extent, the fault does not lie with the students, but with the older generation. This kind of "tolerance" is not supported by the First Amendment and needs to be censured for America to survive.