Tuesday, February 12, 2008

When Tolerance Trumps Truth

Donald DeMarco writes in the February 17-23 issue of National Catholic Register:
... In today’s post-modern world, the notion that truth leads to freedom is regarded as narrowly Catholic and intolerant of other religious views. The new blueprint in the post-modern world is that tolerance, not truth, leads to freedom. This is a crossroad and a crisis to which Pope Benedict XVI has given considerable thought and verbal expression.

By setting tolerance above truth, tolerance degenerates into intolerance, while truth is abandoned altogether. The result is akin to what Plato describes in the opening of the seventh chapter of his Republic: cave dwellers who are intolerant of education, mesmerized by shadows, and closed to the light of truth that could improve their lives. The rejection of truth does not make people tolerant. As the great Catholic philosopher Jacques Maritain has stated, “The man who says ‘What is truth?’ as Pilate did, is not a tolerant man, but a betrayer of the human race.”

What is initially tolerance toward same-sex couples soon becomes intolerance toward the very words “father” and “mother.”

Similarly the BBC ordered its writers to avoid the contentious terms, “husband” and “wife.” Many North American universities have outlawed student pro-life groups in the interest of demonstrating their tolerance toward those who are “pro-choice.”

One cannot simultaneously tolerate contraries and contradictories.

Opposition to same-sex “marriage” is not tolerated and routinely denounced as “homophobic.” To cite but one salient example, in January 2006, the European Parliament passed a resolution condemning states that do not recognize same-sex “marriages” as “homophobic.”

Relativism is a default philosophy that emerges as a result of an unwillingness to put truth and tolerance in their proper order. But it is unworkable on a practical level and creates immense, though unnecessary, stumbling blocks in the path of education, democracy, and the implementation of the natural law. In fact, it contributes, significantly, to the culture of death.

[Read the whole thing]

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