International Day for Tolerance

November 16 has been set aside by the United Nations as a day to promote tolerance. Their website explains it like this: “On the day of its fiftieth anniversary, 16 November 1995, UNESCO’s Member States adopted a Declaration of Principles on Tolerance. Among other things, the Declaration affirms that tolerance is neither indulgence nor indifference. It is respect and appreciation of the rich variety of our world’s cultures, our forms of expression and ways of being human. Tolerance recognizes the universal human rights and fundamental freedoms of others. People are naturally diverse; only tolerance can ensure the survival of mixed communities in every region of the globe.”

In an age that seems to be getting less tolerant all the time, it is important to recognize intolerance and to celebrate diversity. The United Nations suggests five ways to counter intolerance.

  1. Passing laws to enforce human rights, such as punishing hate crimes, and making sure all have equal access to such things as courts and other bodies which help prevent discrimination.
  2. Fighting intolerance though education. Children need to be taught about diversity, and to be open and curious, rather than fearful of those different than themselves. Education best happens in not only school, but also the home and the workplace.
  3. Fighting intolerance requires access to information. By this, they mean a free press, which presents accurate information about different groups of people.
  4. Individual awareness. Pay attention to what goes on around you at work and in other places, particularly involving stereotyping particular groups. People need to monitor their own reactions to jokes and casual remarks to keep intolerance from gaining hold.
  5. Local solutions. Tolerance begins at the local level with getting involved with organizations in the community fighting intolerance.

May we all be more aware of our prejudices and work to remove them!

Quotes about tolerance

Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding.–Mohandas Gandhi

Bigotry tries to keep truth safe in its hand; with a grip that kills it.–Rabindranath Tagore

The color of the skin makes no difference. What is good and just for one is good and just for the other, and the Great Spirit made all men brothers.–White Shield

The greatest and noblest pleasure which we have in this world is to discover new truths, and the next is to shake off old prejudices.–Frederick II, the Great

Greetings, I am pleased to see that we are different. May we together become greater than the sum of both of us.–Vulcan greeting

How do we create a harmonious society out of so many kinds of people? The key is tolerance–the one value that is indispensable in creating community.–Barbara Jordan

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.–Martin Luther King, Jr.

In the practice of tolerance, one’s enemy is the best teacher.–Dalai Lama

It’s a universal law – intolerance is the first sign of an inadequate education. An ill-educated person behaves with arrogant impatience, whereas truly profound education breeds humility.–Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Man is always inclined to be intolerant towards the thing, or person, he hasn’t taken the time adequately to understand…–Robert R. Brown

No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.-Nelson Mandela

Nothing dies so hard, or rallies so often as intolerance.–Henry Ward Beecher

Tolerance is the only real test of civilization.–Arthur Helps

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Tolerance

I want to talk about tolerance today because lately there seems to be so little of it in the world. There are too many who are eager to set one person against each other because of their nationality, their religion, their race, their gender, their political beliefs, etc. Those who wish to divide us work on our fears, or our ignorance, because one who is afraid is more likely to look to a strong leader, whoever he or she is, to make them safe again. We are fed scary stereotypes that have very little to do with reality. We repeat slogans until we believe they are true. We believe what we read from news sources that confirm our prejudices and dismiss others with a different viewpoint. We see the best or worst in someone because of what group they belong to, rather than who they are as an individual. And with oh so many groups and persons ready to stoke that fear, it becomes very hard to find the truth.

Tolerance takes work. So does the next step, which is respect for others. It’s so much easier to paint all the members of a group with a broad brush than to dig deep and look for the truth. It’s so easy to drop into a “circle the wagons mentality,” than to listen to what others different than ourselves are saying, because we might then have to admit there is truth in their words. But let us be courageous to listen and learn from those who are different than us. Let us educate ourselves, so we can understand others points of view. In the end, understanding and respect are the only things that can save us or give us lasting peace.

tolerance

Quotes about tolerance

Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding.–Mohandas Gandhi

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up, live out the true meaning of its creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.–Martin Luther King Jr.

Tolerance is the only real test of civilization.–Arthur Helps

I think we have to own the fears that we have of each other, and then, in some practical way, some daily way, figure out how to see people differently than the way we were brought up to.–Alice Walker

Bigotry tries to keep truth safe in its hand; with a grip that kills it.–Rabindranath Tagore

We cannot merely pray to You, O God, to root out prejudice:
For you have already given us eyes
With which to see the good in all people
If we would only use them rightly.–Rabbi Jack Riemer

It’s a universal law – intolerance is the first sign of an inadequate education. An ill-educated person behaves with arrogant impatience, whereas truly profound education breeds humility.–Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

The color of the skin makes no difference. What is good and just for one is good and just for the other, and the Great Spirit made all men brothers.–White Shield

When we clearly understand that there is no superior sex or superior race, we will have opened the door of communication and laid the foundation for building winning relationships with all people in this global world of ours.–Zig Ziglar

Greetings, I am pleased to see that we are different. May we together become greater than the sum of both of us.–Vulcan greeting

You’ve got to be taught to be afraid
Of people whose eyes are oddly made,
Of people whose skin is a different shade.
You’ve got to be carefully taught.–Oscar Hammerstein II (from South Pacific)

How do we create a harmonious society out of so many kinds of people? The key is tolerance–the one value that is indispensable in creating community.–Barbara Jordan

Find more than 9000 inspirational quotes and a link to the Quote of the Day list, as well as quotation related merchandise, at http://www.quotelady.com.