Shootin' the Breeze

and random targets

Two Way Streets

Walt Garrison famously noted that “People are funny critters.”  That is something we can probably agree on.

There are other things that, apparently, we cannot agree upon.  For instance, we might not agree about which people are the funny critters and which are the correct and, therefore, superior human beings.

I am often amused by the inconsistencies of others who do not see things my way.

One example of irony is the intolerance of the tolerant.  Some folks are so sympathetic about causes for the rights of certain groups of perceived victims that they are hateful and intolerant towards any who disagree with them.    There are so many examples that I hesitate to pick on any particular ones so that I do not appear, you know, intolerant.

I know someone who writes as if she hates all those who do not agree with her politically correct ideas.  She is the most intolerant person I know when it comes to disregarding the opinions contrary to hers.  She sees herself as sticking up for victims of one societal wrong or another, but does it in such a way that all who disagree are themselves victims of another sort — victims of her wrath.  She has absolutely no tolerance for those that she perceives as being intolerant.

I suppose that is human nature, yet I wish she would see the logical inconsistency.

I am not concluding with a watered down plea that we all get along because I’m okay and you’re okay and every thought has equal value.

There are some horrible wrongs that humans through the centuries have passionately struggled to correct.  I don’t see the need for a debate about the pros and cons of lynching or the Holocaust.

However, especially in politics, reasonable people can disagree.  Let’s be reasonable.  Part of being reasonable is to try to see things from both sides before deciding which side you favor.  I did not invent this concept — “Walk a mile in the other fella’s mocassins.”  The opposing view is not necessarily evil, it might just be different from yours.  It might even be better than yours.  It takes a wise person to acknowledge that.

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6 thoughts on “Two Way Streets

  1. I seem to remember Tom Lehrer, many years ago, saying something along these lines, and starting out in very gentle, reasonable tones:

    “I know that there are people in this world who do not love their fellow man,”
    (of course, this was before women got all uppity about patriarchal language)

    “and I HATE people like that!” 😉

    • Ha! That is exactly what I was trying to say. He said it much more succinctly.

      Bob Newhart said, “While I personally do not like country music, I do not denigrate those who do. For those of you who do like country music, denigrate means look down upon.”

  2. America’s strength and beauty has always been found in her values and diversity. I believe there are things we should tolerate, and then there are things we should stand for. A country that stands for nothing will eventually fall for anything.
    Thanks for this post.

  3. You bring up concepts that are so apropos today. Two way streets are so unforgiving at times – leading up to intolerance concluding with violence. Extremes can never be eliminated, unfortunately, but hopefully some limits can be realized miraculously by those same people. Guess that’s a pipe dream.

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