Tolerance

Tolerance

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I have something weighing on my mind; it’s probably a rant, so I am going to give fair warning. If you read this site, you may have (if not then I’m not doing a good job of expressing myself) noticed I am a rather conservative Christian. So far warning, if you don’t want to hear my opinion on the current direction of the American culture then don’t click the “read more” link below, and wait a day or so to read my next how to article. Otherwise please enjoy part two of a three part series.

Words have meanings, and when having discussions about thorny issues, I think it is vital to agree on the proper definitions. Let me give you an example; When a convict says, “I got 14 years for accessory to armed robbery, it’s not my fault I was at the wrong place at the wrong time” you define that to mean he is saying he is innocent of the crime, when he just might be saying that the he shouldn’t have been home when the cops arrived.

I titled this post as “Tolerance” because I want to express my understanding of what progressives mean when they use this term. I feel this is needed because the progressive dictionary is much more flexible in meaning than the conservative one. Anyone that disagrees with that statement should tell me what the definition of “is” is.

In the last article I talked about judgment, and how I believe each adult is responsible for their own actions, and how we should not try to enforce out will upon others. Today’s article will go into detail about what I see is the reasoning that a segment of our population feels the need to do just that.

I am of the belief that not everybody holds the same opinions as I do, and I respect that. I came to my beliefs based upon observation, education, and life experiences – what I believe works for me. I am rational enough to understand that if different people have different life experiences then the resulting belief systems may not be the same.

I think this is a source of American strength; Tolerance is part of the reason we can improvise, adapt, and overcome. Why we thrive on adversity – because we can learn from each other, and have a rational discourse.

When I use the word tolerance I prefer to define it as “a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward opinions and practices that differ from one’s own.” Coupled the idea that one should not judge others – it means that I am pretty accepting of other’s beliefs without compromising my own. That does not mean I believe the practices and opinions of others are right or even healthy, just that I don’t see it as my business to force my opinions on others.

However, I am also starting to see the meaning of the word tolerance becoming twisted. The permissive portion has become over strengthened and fair has been weakened. Somehow tolerance has a new meaning that means any behavior besides the traditional American Christian viewpoint is acceptable, but the conservative viewpoint is no longer tolerated.

I find this to be rather interesting, as that this viewpoint is still the majority opinion of this country, and the freedom to bring about the change in the meaning of tolerance stems from the tolerance of the typical American conservative.

When it boils down to it, the Christian Conservatives I have met are good people, they want little kids to go to sleep in warm beds and full bellies. They want them to go to good schools and grow up to have good jobs.

The typical liberal I know are also good people, they too want kids to be safe and grow up to

So, since this is, at the heart of it, a gun blog I will illustrate another way.

I believe I have a right and a duty to protect my family from harm. I believe that God endowed me with certain rights that cannot be righteously taken away. One of those rights is to possess and carry firearms to protect those rights.

There are places I cannot carry my firearm, and frankly I am uncomfortable without it. All I can think of is that “IF” something happened, without my pistol I really cannot respond to an active shooter situation nearly as effectively as I can with my handgun. This is born out in statistics – when an active shooter situation is stopped by police the average civilians death count is 18, when stopped by an armed citizen it is 2.

I tolerate my feelings of being uncomfortable without my firearm in certain situations because that’s the law, and because part of being part of a larger society is subjugating some measure of individual rights for the common good.

What bothers me is that I know that in the event of a spree killer I am more useful with my gun than without. I know my skill level, and have trained specifically in being able to determine if I should or should not use my pistol to attempt to end a threat. I also know that I am mentally stable enough to act in a reasonable manner. My possession of a gun is only a threat to those looking to harm innocent people.

However, not all Americans like guns; some are uncomfortable with the idea that there are men who are willing to commit violent acts in protection of something greater than themselves. To some, a gun has a soul – that it is an evil implement that has a desire to kill – The mere sight of a gun makes some uncomfortable.

I don’t understand that mindset. I know the true nature of a gun. However, in deference to those that are afraid of a hunk of metal, I am willing to conceal it from their view so that they do not feel uncomfortable.

That’s not good enough for them; somehow, they believe that even though I am willing to compromise to spare their feelings, I should not be able to own a gun. My inability to protect my child, my wife, or myself and my feelings of fear that I would not be able to protect those I love is not important to them as their feelings of discomfort.

It is ludicrous, why does one person’s opinion and feelings more important than another’s? I make a point not to enforce my will on those that disagree with me, and all I ask is that they give me the same respect.

Why is it that certain classes of people believe they have the right to criticize my life choices and attempt to force me to change my perception of the world, while demanding that I do not do the same to them?

I will tell you what I believe is the reason in the next post.

I believe the rules should be applied fairly, and that while we don’t have a perfect system, if we work within the framework of our Constitution we have a very fair system. I believe that those that abuse the system and try to circumvent the rules because “the end justifies the means”, those that wish to force their will upon others are anomalies. I believe conservatives greatly outnumber militant progressives, and that gun owners in particular make up the majority of Americans, and that the vast majority of gun owners are conservatives that believe in our system of government.

If there ever is a time that being conservative is criminal, if guns are outlawed and our Constitution destroyed, if conservatives ever adopted the progressive playbook and adopted the “rules for radicals” We would crush them. That is why I believe they work so hard to demonize us, because they cannot understand why we allow the rules to be twisted against us, and still try to work within the boundaries of the law, and they have night terrors at the thought that one day we may “wake up” and treat them as they treat us.

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One Response

  1. Sarah

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