Submitted by Angie Lee Sisk
Think about it. A truly diverse culture is accepting (or at least tolerant) of differing ideas, beliefs, or opinions and not just different sexes, ages, skin colors, etc.. Recently, however, instead of celebrating the many different ideas, beliefs, and opinions in this country, anyone who stands on the "wrong" side of a hot-button issue is branded a bigot and told to go die or a mob will kill you and your family, burn down your house, and slaughter your dog just for associating with you.
There is no diversity allowed, because there is no tolerance, another concept the original meaning of which has morphed into a creature directly opposing that noble notion.
~~~Example 1: I am a Christian that does not believe in gay marriage, but those on the "correct" side of the issue don't know certain facts about me and my beliefs system:
1. I love you without judgment as Christ commanded.
2. I believe God gave us all free will and it's wrong for me to deny your right to exercise it.
3. I believe you have the freedom and liberty to make your own choices under man's law, which we are instructed to abide by per NT teachings. It's none of my damn business, really, what you're doing in the privacy of your own bedroom, just like it's none of your damn business what I'm doing in mine.
4. I believe the state has no business in regulating "marriage" as a religious institution recognized by the state, although the SCOTUS ruling puts that to bed (apparently in this case those on the "correct" side of the issue don't believe in separation of church and state? I'm confused). The state's role is to enforce protections of benefits conferred through religious ceremonies currently, such that the state recognizes ONLY civil unions for EVERYONE regardless of a person's religious proclivities, sexual orientation, race, or any other demographic being used to divide our society today. If someone wants a religious ceremony then it needs to be performed separately, and the "power of the state" should NOT be vested in a member of the clergy. THAT is truly SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE.
However, in today's climate of "diversity," such details are irrelevant because 1) I am a Christian and 2) I don't support gay marriage; therefore, I am an intolerant bigot and need to die.
~~~ Example 2: I do not believe in "climate change." In any forum I state this, I am automatically dubbed, without further explanation allowed, a Republican right wingnut denier who wants to rape the planet for a quick buck and make it uninhabitable for future generations. Or something to that effect. Regardless, I need to die because I have the "wrong" opinion. Irrelevant is the fact that I *do* believe in conservation and protecting the environment and that violators of REASONABLE regulations effecting that protection need to be dealt with severely.
I could give other examples, but you get my point.
My concern is that in suppressing opposing viewpoints, opinions, beliefs, or anything else, you're not truly celebrating diversity. Or tolerance. In fact, you're just the same as those you've labeled "evil intolerant bigots." What's your end game? Is it truly to embrace diversity, or is it to punish those you feel have been the oppressors? If your motivation is vengeance, you're no better than those you call the oppressors and seek to destroy, and you're going to take all the rest of us down even if we're not truly your "enemy" or a "violator."
Just because my opinion is different than yours doesn't make either right or wrong. It makes them different. Without differences and other facets of an issue to consider, we will never learn and grow. If everyone is the same and thinks the same and feels the same, we truly lose DIVERSITY.