Being tolerant of intolerance is undermining the justice that is inherent in the word itself. That is to say, the ‘politically correct’ position that respecting others’ beliefs is always the proper vantage point from which to view things needs to be dismantled due to this perspective contributing to the greatest atrocities of the postmodern era. Let’s take a specific issue – the denial of equal rights for homosexuals in the United States. To a rational person, this is a civil rights issue and the endorsement of anti-gay sentiment undercuts the fraternity amongst humankind at its core; considering our gay brothers and sisters as lesser beings based on what they are is an evil that can only be justified by an irrational source. So in America, what is the main source of this bigotry? A book that is found in each hotel room and preached from bully pulpits every Sunday: The Holy Bible. Now, that is not to say that many people would not have bias against homosexuality regardless of what is written in this antiquated text (it seems the least intelligent among us take issue with anything different from themselves), but the notion that we are supposed to be respectful of someone else’s beliefs regardless of the amount of intellectual effort put into them provides a platform for which they can be asserted as equally valid as a more rational position. It would take another essay to expose all of the blatant hypocrisies of using the Bible to justify one’s anti-gay propositions (both legislatively and morally): the Old Testament supports wicked ideas such as slavery and genocide which I would assume most Christians would not claim to support. Regardless, the truth of the matter is that rationality and intellectual discourse are contagious; if I explain to you why I believe something, you will helplessly agree with me if my reasons are good enough and your mind values prudence. Acting as though beliefs that are not based in rationality, but in other concepts such as faith, should be treated with as much respect is dangerous and one of the main reasons humanity continually refuses to grow up.
rosiland, publishing, ues
“Awww thats so cute, your Aunt posted another picture of her new born baby throwing up on facebook!” Guess what, hate to break it to you, I don’t give a flying fuck! I don’t give a shit who does and says what on facebook. Maybe it’s the fact that everyone lies by making their life look so luxurious, when we know it fucking sucks. They are probably just sitting at home, in their miserable bubble they call a life, looking for the next best thing to post. This way people think they’re “actually” doing something. This is just adding to the crisis of America. Maybe if we actually took the initiative by going out and doing something, we would see some changes. So stop posting on facebook, checking your feed every five minutes, and go out and make a difference you facebook whores!
judy, writer, park slope
Dear guy with bike on subway: Why are you on the subway? You have a bike; a means of transportation. You woke up this morning and thought, “I’m going to take the bike!” but somehow that diverged into, “I’m going to bike halfway, then take my bike on the subway during rush hour, and give dirty looks to everyone who does not accommodate their lives around me.” Please don’t bring your bike on the train. Oh, and just so you know, those bike shorts do NOT look good on you.
jason, retail, hells kitchen
Listen boys, all foods are not aphrodisiacs. Just because you took me to dinner, does not mean I’ll sleep with you. So maybe instead of trying to feel me up under the table and asking me to go back to your place, let’s have a real conversation. I’m not a fucking piece of meat just looking to get slaughtered and dropped off. I don’t need you or your cab fair. I need you to step up to the plate and be a man.
lucinda, secretary, midtown
Listen, I get that you think that you’re hot shit, random girl on the subway,
but you don’t have to be a stuck-up bitch. We are both in an extremely crowded train car, and you happen to be directly in front of me, so my eyes met yours. To fill the awkwardness, I just smiled, and waited for you to smile back, or maybe just look away. But no. you had to scrunch up your little white girl face, look me up and down, and then scoff. There are millions of men in this city, so chances are, you’re going to bump into a few strangers, even make some awkward eye contact. They’re not all looking to bang you, I promise. I’m going to take that stick you have lodged in your ass, and beat you with it.
charlie, production, astoria
Hey, huge muscle guy, we get it. You have huge, bulging, veiny, steroid induced muscles. EVERYWHERE. So stop spending 45 minutes at the bench press, leaving it horribly sweaty, and asking to spot me. I can promise you that it’s not encouraging to work out when I have to stare at your giant freak body. Actually, it makes me want you to drop the weight on my neck, and end it there but your super strength wouldn’t even let that happen.
mark, hotelier, midtown
Now in my twenties, I have had my fair share of political debates. Deeming who is in the right, who is absolutely without a doubt in the wrong, arguing why it even matters until you’re blue in the face, and concluding how it all fits together for a greater purpose of good (because that’s what we are suppose to do, right?). I will admit… being from a political slam-packed generation (referring mostly to everything that has happened since 9/11 and its’ rippling effect throughout our world) it becomes hard to draw a line between what is worth debating and what seems to only make things more blurry leading to a different discussion altogether. It’s a lingering question that is constantly sparked in the air amongst us, ‘What really matters?’ In its’ simplicity it evokes the complexities of our globalized world.
aaron, finance, battery park
America is a nation of instant gratification. We want answers, money, remedies, fame, success and we want it now. Right now. We make decisions in order to achieve things immediately and we disregard the process we chose to get there. When people make decisions, they think in the short term. How do I get what I want the fastest? How do I get it now? Very rarely do they think of the damage that is done in making decisions with such a short deadline. So, we want things quickly, that’s fine, but at what cost? Would you risk you getting wrinkles for whiter teeth? How about cancer for less cramping during ‘that time of the month’? Or more likely duodenal ulcers for unbridled fame. That is what some people are doing by going tanning (what?) in tanning beds, and the worst part? Some doctors are prescribing it to patients.
katherine, educator, bronx
People have probably bitched and moaned enough – articulately and inarticulately – about Occupy Wall Street; ‘we really need to get some of the 99% to understand they’re not benefitting from the policies we have’ and ‘isn’t it really fucking awful how those Wall Street d-bags were drinking champagne from their balconies, this is why everyone hates bankers.’ Our epidemic as people is that we all love a spectacle – that’s why some of us, when we’re not chanting with everyone else, watch the the groups of protestors as if they’re animals in the zoo. But as someone who really wants to see this work out, I really think we need to just sit down and have a more open dialogue about the deeply-rooted domestic problems that we, as a nation, need to address.
janene, pr, ues
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