In today’s globalized world, with easy access to information (and misinformation), and where everyone comfortably finds an editorial home for their opinion through social networks, the use of the term tolerance has been emphasized to label opinions or behaviors for free, thus blurring the true meaning of this value that we dare to portray throughout this article.
In everyday life, it is common to find situations in which we disagree with friends, family or our partner. Although it is often difficult for us to believe it, each person, no matter how radical, conceited or even absurd it may seem to us, is completely sure that their judgment is correct, fair and, to its extent, the most tolerant. That is why labeling one’s neighbor as intolerant often automatically labels the accuser as such, not being able to understand that our fellow man does not have bad intentions nor does he have to be a cretin, he simply has a different perspective than ours. Yes, treasure, and it is pride that weakens our capacity for conversation, reducing to a minimum the margin to take advantage of the opportunity to learn. We are distressed by the opposing opinion as if it were a personal attack, and that is when we use the resource of (in)tolerance to discredit our opponent, doing a very disservice to the reputation of this term.
On the other hand, there is its political use, since it is used as a tool to repress our most accurate behavior and impulses. You cannot criticize one thing or express another, because you must be tolerant, but is there perhaps greater intolerance than drawing or surrounding the opinion of others, whatever that may be? The problem is not the message, but the forms; It is not the content, but the intention. Expressing opinions, beliefs and values is as necessary as it is instructive, but the quality of tolerance and the basis of a constructive conversation lies in the delicacy of being able to do so without hurting the sensibilities of others.
Tolerance is not about being pleased with what is different, but about accepting and respecting what bothers you, what you hate, what is the opposite of you. Fortunately, it is unquestionable that in the increasingly near future globalization will be a complete reality and people of different races, cultures, religions, sexual inclinations and even musical tastes will coexist anywhere. By then, the meaning of this word will be different from what it is today, perhaps it will no longer be used to adorn egos or dress pride, but being tolerant will be so normal and accepted that the simple fact of mentioning it will seem ridiculous.
It is important to be aware that expressing the need to be tolerant towards someone makes a difference, being used as a compassionate weapon that places the person we are addressing on a different, lower level. In short, tolerance is not said, it is done. Excuse me, I started to dream, and while dreaming I dreamed that we didn’t all look the same, but in reality we were.