[Cross-posted at Crooks and Liars.]
The ever-clueless Steve Doocy this morning, talking about the Chick-Fil-A controversy:
DOOCY: Remember, it wasn't just people supporting Dan Cathy for his Christian values. ... People not only supporting his Christian values, and they are closed on Sundays. But also just the CEO's right to say what he thinks. You know, a lot of people wound up going -- I was reading in the New York Post today about how a lot of people went over to New Jersey to a Chick-Fil-A, and it wasn't to support the family-values thing, but to support his right to say something, because so many people on the left are so intolerant -- you gotta be able to say in this country what you think!Of course, it never appeared to occur to Doocy that what the people who are raising an outcry about Dan Cathy's remarks are protesting is Dan Cathy's blatant and blind intolerance.
This is an old conundrum, or at least it appears to be one, raised time and again during the civil-rights struggles of the 1950s and beyond: Should the tolerant tolerate intolerance?
It's not really a conundrum, though, because the answer is a simple one: No. Tolerance and intolerance are diametrically opposed principles, like matter and anti-matter. One cannot exist in the presence of the other. People who are dedicated to the principles of tolerance have no place for intolerance: It is what they are fighting.
The people like Doocy who are on the historically wrong side of the Chick-Fil-A controversy should think back to the civil-rights era, when people voiced outrage at the intolerance of famous bigots like George Wallace and Lester Maddox and Orval Faubus. The people who organized boycotts of these bigots and the places they represented back then were similarly accused of "intolerance" at the time.
The lesson of that history remains a simple and clear one: One cannot end racial, ethnic, religious, or sexual intolerance by "tolerating" the people who practice it. They will only change when they are faced with becoming pariahs. It is no different today than it was fifty years ago.
Not that we could expect a dim bulb like Doocy to figure that out, either.