Tolerating the Intolerance of the Intolerating Tolerant

Honestly, I have no idea what I was getting at with that title.  The point of this evenings content is to discuss something that came across my Facebook feed recently.  A FB Friend (A) had referenced another FB Friend (B) noting that B was an intolerant sexist bigot (or some such thing) and that anyone who remains friends with B should just unfriend A.  So, first things first…. whatever.  Now, for some reason I was thinking

‘Yeah, B has had some seriously wacked perspectives on politics lately.  Like, I knew he was conservative, but WOW’

I seriously considered dropping B.  But then I thought about the “Echo Chamber” — which s a metaphorical description of a situation in which beliefs are amplified or reinforced by communication and repetition inside a closed system — and while I certainly no longer want to tolerate the intolerant, I feel by dropping B from my FB friends list I am only empowering their Echo Chamber.

By losing site of their posts I will no longer be able to refute or argue the conspiracies they choose to believe and share.  I will no longer have the chance to look at some link to REAL fake news and force them to be a critical thinker.  I will allow their intolerance to grow and fester in a social bubble of their own creation.  I feel by doing this I am allowing this insidious set of beliefs to just hide under the surface.  I don’t want to do that.

I want to face intolerance head on.  I want to refute their claims, push back on their ridiculous beliefs, and force each one of them to question what they believe.  I don’t want to remove FB friends and leave them in a cesspool of bigotry and ignorance.  I want to try and be that guide toward critical thinking and enlightenment.

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