MarkBuckawicki, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Tolerance is a vital aspect of any society, as it allows for the peaceful coexistence of individuals with diverse beliefs, values, and lifestyles. Without tolerance, society would be plagued by conflict, division, and oppression.

However, tolerance does not mean that we must approve of or condone every behavior or lifestyle. Rather, it means that we respect the right of others to live their lives as they see fit, even if their choices differ from our own.

One of the most important reasons to tolerate public behavior that we do not approve of is that it is essential for the preservation of freedom and democracy. In a free society, individuals have the right to make their own choices, even if they are not the choices that we would make for ourselves or for others. Restricting the behavior of others in the name of personal morality or social norms is a violation of their basic rights and freedoms.

Moreover, tolerance helps to foster a more inclusive and accepting society. When we are intolerant of others’ beliefs and behaviors, we create an environment of fear and mistrust, where individuals are afraid to express themselves or be themselves. This can lead to alienation, discrimination, and even violence. On the other hand, when we are tolerant of others, we create a society where individuals feel safe and respected, and where diverse perspectives and lifestyles are celebrated.

Lastly, tolerance is also important for personal growth and self-awareness. When we are exposed to different beliefs and behaviors, we are forced to confront and question our own beliefs and values. This can lead to a deeper understanding and appreciation of ourselves, as well as of others. It can also lead to personal growth and self-awareness, as we learn to be more open-minded and accepting of others.

In conclusion, tolerance is a fundamental aspect of a free and inclusive society. While we may not always approve of the behavior of others, we must respect their right to live their lives as they see fit. Tolerance promotes freedom, acceptance, and personal growth, making it a vital virtue for all of us to practice. The one simple thing to do to be tolerant is let people live.



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