About Joanna Schroeder

Joanna Schroeder is a feminist writer and editor with a special focus in issues facing raising boys and gender in the media. Her work has appeared on Redbook, Yahoo!, xoJane, MariaShriver.com, TIME.com, and more. She and her husband are outdoor sports enthusiasts raising very active sons. She is currently co-editing a book of essays for boys and young men with author and advocate Jeff Perera. Follow her shenanigans on Twitter.


  1. While I agree with you about them being racist, at the same time I disagree with the racist attacks against them such as “Of course it doesn’t bother you that people are racist. You are white.”

    Racism is a major problem in this country and needs to die.. on both sides. It’s much like the usage of the word “nigger”. I agree with Bill Cosby when he frankly said that you can’t expect others to stop using that word when you, yourself, use it.

  2. FYI, here’s one article about the Virginia tribes and how they feel about the name. As noted, the tribes in this area think it’s an honor – not a slur.

  3. Richard Aubrey says:

    Keep hearing Tom Lehrer’s “Folk Song Army”.

    “We all hate poverty, war and injustice
    Unlike the rest of you squares.”

  4. Everyone has their intolerance, to me it wouldn’t be usual if you didn’t have at least one

  5. Even though we are on opposites “sides” of the discourse, I applaud your willingness to be open. Also, what is really bothersome to me is the lack of civil conversation. This is where the media and many others fail miserably. I believe our republic is strong when we can disagree respectfully; where all differences ethnic, cultural and anything else we bring to the table can be discussed.
    There’s a great deal of fear out there and that needs to be faced with honesty and yes, forgiveness. Only then can we heal and become stronger as a culture.

  6. Laura Welsh says:

    I guess I am intolerant of corporations using any old method to sell their product. I really don’t believe that the Coca-cola company is “good natured”, has humanity’s best interest at heart, and really cares about anything but their bottom line…. making money. Sure…. there are decent folks who work at this company…. people who even care about what’s going on in the world…. I just don’t know….perhaps this is what being an American means – the freedom to sell any product coupled with the freedom to buy any product. I don’t really see any value in the products that the Coca-cola company has to offer. Well, yes… now they are getting into the business of selling smoothies….because people are finally beginning to realize how destructive soda is to the body…. but seriously….to me…. there is no problem with whomever sings the National Anthem…it’s that the National Anthem has been bought! And that it takes a multi-national corporation to get the message out that anyone can sing the American Anthem????? People???!!!! This is crazy! This country has got problems! It kind of reminds me of how politicians get bought. If we really need a corporation to “tell us” about equality and justice…. I think we are still missing the boat! Most of these corporations that are trying to be “hip” and “send a message” are happy to keep their business production in third world countries and take advantage of low to no, protections for the people and their environment! And don’t let me get started on where this ad played! Oy! Talk about intolerant! We have got to get our heads out of…. well…. the sand!

  7. Yes, part of what you said is true, Alan. It is why we’re here as you say. But there’s the rub of this thing called a republic. If we were to chase off all the ignorant we all know and love, then who’d be left? After all the right says the left is ignorant, vice versa for the left. Many whites feel that way about blacks, and many blacks feel the same about whites. Add religions and sexuality to that mess of a mix and we get America, and whether we like it or not we must respect the right of all to use that right anyway they deem suited. Barring outright violence of course. All anyone can do is keep speaking the humanistic point of view to try and educate as much as possible. Beyond that and we’re no better than the Russian proclamations that are the topic du jour. And maybe some will have their minds opened by continual talk.

  8. I really hope you didn’t delete my kast post because it caused discomfort. After all. You just said everybody could have their say. If there is a double post then I apologize.

    What I said was is that i will assume you and I will stand side by side as you call out Jesse and Al for the hate they have promoted, the followers of islam who stand silently by while innocents are killed, and msnbc for tolerating comments from their staff for calling for the hope a woman they disagree with dies. I said that tell me when and where you wish to do that and I’ll be there to support you.

    You’ve got a good heart joanna, but at least at this time woefully one sided, therefore rendered irrelevant.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Mark, it just got held up in moderation, and then we deleted it because once you wrote this it was a duplicate.

      • Anonymous says:

        Thanks Joanna. Figured as much but I’ve sometimes experienced issues on posting. Sometimes it’s there. Sometimes not. Odd.

  9. BTW, one more point. Unlike most on the left, I will defend to the end anyone’s right to say out loud their own beliefs. Could care less what it is. But I will then reserve that right to not have anything more to do with them than I absolutely have to because I will not bassociate with stupid people. And that includes the ones on the left who think they’ve got it all figured out, that by shutting up everybody else they can actually squelch all the stupids. Guerss what. It’s counter productive because it breeds even more intolerance. So who won?

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Mark, if you look above I say that I believe everyone should have the right to say whatever they want. But it’s my right to tell them they’re being intolerant xenophobes.

  10. I understand exactly what topics you were speaking about. But when you lumped them all in with only the right, FOX and all that, then it is clear that you were in fact telling anyone that voted for the right, was in fact all of these. You can’t seperate it by individual Joanna. Much as you’d like to, you can’t. School funding, healthcare, income resdistribution is a fight for different philosophies of how we get better. All of us. It is not hatred per se, but power and control. I don’t endorse any candidate that would be vocally homophobic, racist, etc etc, left or right, but this culture has set it up so both sides have to be all things the opposite to each other or no one grasps what the heck they are saying. I believe that the philosophical proceeding of the right is better thaan the left, and that has been proven over time. You have had a left leaning Congress for so damn long now, yet do I hear anyone on the left call for their ouster for not closing tax loopholes and what not all these years for income parity? Nope. Because to be left you are supposed to keep your mouth shut on the things you disagree with, or your not left enough.

    The right does it too. so we choose to pick and choose what and how much of what we dislike as compared to the overall. You do it, I do it. So that’s why I say your perspective is not just, and only about the 3 or 4 things you’re intolerant of. I am too, but in the larger scheme there is much for me to like on the right side of the fence, and all things come in time, not in one fell swoop.

    So you want to make a shift, call Jesse Jackson and All Sharpton out for their racism. Call the Islamics out for their quiet voice against terrorists killing Christians in Allah’s name, call em all out. But I don’t think you can, because for most on the left, any of that would not be left enough for them, and folks may question their devotion and committment to the left,

    At least on the right we have libertarians that are good and honest people too, but thosehave been politically attacked by the left in particular to ostracize them form power. Why the vehemence? Because the left really is scared of these folks because they may just resonate with the voters, and then the left is gone from their power.

    I laud your feelings of being inclusive, we share them, we agree, but just don’t think that you have the corner on the market for humanistic correctness, as being not part and parcel of your own political correctness, and in that you have become a three legged race with the same ones you state you are intolerant of.

  11. I think this posting is as much intolerant as all that you’ve written about as being intolerant. Your diatribe is mainly your opinion wrapped in your subjective veneer of truth.

    I’m a conservative who dislikes the far right, but find the far left to be equally, perhaps more obnoxious for their belief in the wonderfulness of all the people throughout the world. They seem to have humanistic moralism on their side as they troop through this mess. Therefore they’re supiorior to the other moral supiorior assholes, when the fact is they are the same assholes of a different stripe.

    Like your comments about Fox. Uet not a word about the lies and haye spew from msnbc. Or all the poor and middle class are such noble people deserving og income redistribution from the bastardly wealthy. Or that there is in fact one general education we all should be getting. Yet some choose not to take advantage of it.

    Don’t kid yourself joanna. Your as guilty of this as anyone. It just sounds better when you say it but is equally offensive.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      You know, here’s the thing. I’m not complaining about your politics – about who you vote for, how you see fiscal policy or health care or funding education. If you read that stuff into what I’ve written, you’re not really paying attention.

      I’ve listed what I’m talking about. Homophobia, bullying, racism. If you’re not doing that, propagating that, or letting the people in your lives get away with that, then none of this is about you.

      • You know, here’s the thing. I’m not complaining about your politics – about who you vote for, how you see fiscal policy or health care or funding education. If you read that stuff into what I’ve written, you’re not really paying attention.

        Your attempted bifurcation does not make sense. Who you vote for and your kind of politics are inextricably tied to the moral and ideological disputes which you put on your list of things which you deem unconscionable or “intolerable.”

        I’ve listed what I’m talking about. Homophobia, bullying, racism. If you’re not doing that, propagating that, or letting the people in your lives get away with that, then none of this is about you.

        Okay, then. And a person’s politics and who he/she votes for has strong implications for his/her position in relation to those rank prejudices which you denounce and how they will continue to affect society.

        Let’s start with homophobia. We are told that if one does not support political gay rights priorities or support same-sex marriage rights, then that constitutes ignorance and homophobia. You yourself said, “I’m intolerant of people who say that our LGBTQ+ brethren don’t deserve equal treatment under a Constitution and Bill of Rights that affords all people the same rights.” That would seem to indicate that support for same sex marriage is a mandatory and non-negotiable thing that someone must support in order for you find that person to be “tolerable.”

        Well, the Republican Party and most conservative political parties usually oppose same-sex marriage and other gay rights policies. There are a few Republican outliers, but if one votes for conservative or Republican candidates in general, one is still helping and empowering groups which want to fight and combat GLBT egalitarian policies. Also, conservative politicians usually oppose any kind of public teachings or pronouncements which are sympathetic or accepting of GLBT individuals or groups. Under your standard, is it possible for a person to consistently vote for a social conservative political party and still claim not to be supporting or propagating homophobia?

        How about racism? We are told that if one opposes affirmative action, then that constitutes racism. Even if one is not personally racist, opposing affirmative action allegedly helps to perpetuate structural and institutional racism and inequality. Most conservative parties and politicians oppose affirmative action and have launched political efforts and initiatives which have successfully ended affirmative action in certain arenas, such as in California college admissions. Supposedly, if one wants to restrict immigration and increase immigration enforcement, then that also constitutes racism and cruelty towards immigrants (who are usually not white). We are told that “drug war” and “tough on crime” policies disproportionately harm minority persons and communities and constitute systemic racism. Under your standard, is it possible to vote for an anti-immigration and “tough on crime” political party and still claim not to be supporting or propagating racism?

        As for bullying, there is no mystery about which political parties usually oppose or obstruct anti-bullying initiatives.

        Under your standard, is it possible for a person to vote Republican and still claim not to be supporting or propagating bullying?

        And for good measure, let us not forget sexism. We are told that if you oppose abortion or the use and provision of contraception, then that constitutes denial of reproductive freedom and discrimination and oppression of women. Most conservative political parties want to restrict and even prohibit abortion completely. And they often oppose the teaching, provision, and dissemination of contraception, especially to minors, and sometimes even to adults. Under your standard, is it possible to vote for an anti-abortion political party and still claim not to be supporting or propagating sexism?

        There may be some persons who claim not to support any of these conservative social positions but who only vote Republican because they want lower taxes or some kind of fiscal policy. But they would still be willing to support and elect politicians who would impose and maintain those “intolerable” positions within society all for the sake of their own particular policy preference, so I don’t know how such voters would rank in your judgment. But such persons are rare. Most persons who consistently support conservative politics agree with at least some of these conservative social positions. And you yourself said “Hell yes, I’m intolerant of your willingness to tolerate others’ hate.” Well, if a person supports a political party in which many of the beliefs and members are motivated or informed by “hate,” then would seem to constitute “tolerating others’ hate,” even if that particular person does not personally subscribe to those beliefs himself.

        Oh, and you did make a slight references to the poor and disabled. And politicians who are fiscally conservative often want to reduce or abolish social welfare and assistance programs for the poor and disabled. Under your standard, is it possible to vote for a fiscally conservative, anti-welfare political party and still claim not to be supporting or propagating classism and ableism?

        Everyone and anyone has the right to be personally “intolerant” about whatever or whomever they wish. But your claim that a person’s voting and politics will have no effect on what or whom you find to be “tolerable” cannot be reconciled with your own words. It would seem that for you to find a person to be “tolerable” in your estimation, then that person would have to at least subscribe to center-left political positions. Of course, that would probably just be a necessary but not a sufficient condition.

  12. Mostly_123 says:

    It’s important to stand up for what you believe in, when you believe it with conviction: I don’t think anyone minds being intolerant of that which they know is reprehensible & wrong, when they know it; or is afraid of being labelled intolerant when they know they’re right & principled. It brings to mind two particular quotes, both from very different people in very different times. Barry Goldwater’s words (and I’m taking them apolitically here) urged zeal when he said: “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.”   

    Winston Churchill’s quote also urges conviction & conscience, but tempered a little bit more with the reticence of time: “… At the lynchgate we may all pass our own conduct and our own judgments under a searching review. It is not given to human beings, -happily for them, for otherwise life would be intolerable- to foresee or to predict to any large extent the unfolding course of events. In one phase men seem to have been right, in another they seem to have been wrong. Then again, a few years later, when the perspective of time has lengthened, all stands in a different setting. There is a new proportion. There is another scale of values… What is the worth of all this? The only guide to a man is his conscience; the only shield to his memory is the rectitude and sincerity of his actions.”

  13. Great article Joanna,

    I am always struggling with this issue of tolerance. No one seems to understand that we tolerate things we don’t like (taxes, annoying coworkers,root canals). Tolerance and acceptance are two very different things. Acceptance means I don’t need to reinvent you so that I’m comfortable. Tolerance typically means I don’t like whatever is going on and as soon as I can use my privilege to dismiss “you” I will.

    Brava Joanna,

    Thanks for educating us !!!

  14. ARealFather says:

    Wow, may feel big when you decide who’s comments are accepted and who’s aren’t. But the sad reality is you know how pathetic you are for refusing honest comments with which you have no rebuttal. You know your little minded followers may have stopped to think about what I said…..You Were Scared….

    Thank you for proving me right on how lib-tards can only function in echo-boxes. My 8 year old even shoot his head at how dishonest a person you are.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      It’s really kind of you to share your ethics with us in this way, actually. “Lib-tards” clears it all up for us.

      Remember the line where I said that parents model bullying to their kids? But I’m sure you’d never let your kids use the R-word against another child, right? You just use the words in comments on the Internet.

    • I have never been called libtard…that is alright with me. I hope any soul comes along who witnesses an obvious fatally intentioned act against a child or helpless creature would act swiftly and without remorse. I do not respect blind “not sees” nor excuse it. Of course I would be scared….I would not let it go though.
      Call me a tard….I wonder about your ***ckin education and would not trust you to raise a child. There are fine English classes you must have made a retarded (slow? late?) arrival at. You work on that tardyboy.

  15. I'm outa here says:

    I guess as a conservative who watches FOX, I’m not too welcome here. See ya.

    BTW, my usual screen name is Tom Brechlin.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Tom, who’s disagreeing with you in comments?

      • still can't log in says:

        Joanna, it’s not that someone has disagreed with me. It’s how generalities are used with respect to conservatives. It appears that clumping an entire segment of population is frowned upon unless it’s a conservative which includes Republicans. And then there are the myths that are always perpetuated which most commonly include their hate for a segment of population. Some will go to great lengths to find a minority radical faction of conservatism and plaster it as though it’s the norm.

        That particular FOX talk was speaking of how Black Conservatives are viewed.

        “Over the past few weeks, for instance, there was the case of Reverend William Barber, the head of the North Carolina NAACP chapter. Barber criticized Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) for being what he considered a ventriloquist’s dummy. Later, Barber called all black conservatives “mouthpieces” in league with a nondescript conservative conspiracy.”

        And to quote Demetrius Minor … “When blacks found out that I voted for George W. Bush and that I was not supporting Barack Obama in 2008, I felt like I was one of the thieves one the cross next to Jesus during his crucifixion. I was criticized for betraying the black culture and appealing to whites. When I informed liberal blacks that I refuse to pledge my allegiance to the Democratic party because of historical precedent or because it’s politically convenient, I was instantly a target. I have been labeled an “Uncle Tom” and accused of “sucking up to white people.” “The most accurate way to describe being a black conservative is that you know you will face a battle: mainstream media, stereotypes, black liberals.”

        Is this much different then what I and others experience here? The biggest difference is that because I’m a white male, I’m added the additional dimension of perceived privilege
        Can you understand where I’m coming from?

        I guess you can say that like you, I am becoming intolerant.

        • Joanna Schroeder says:

          Tom, I just don’t think that five white people need to be siting around talking about how Black people are treated by the NAACP. That seems really inappropriate, colonialist, and even paternalistic. I mean, how hard would it have been to have Black people commentating on the NAACP’s treatment of conservative Black legislators? It wouldn’t be hard, but it would require a few of those white folks to step off the stage.

          My rule is always this: The subject of the story should be the one telling the story.

          • Actually Joanna, I think in this regard it is entirely appropriate, and that it is paternalistic that we allow only black folks to think and talk about black folks. Think about this. Doesn’t it really say that that we are now actually closer by being inclusive of black folks and we are trying to understand their position better. I’m a guy so I shouldn’t talk about feminine feelings, but merely address them as they are the absolute right ones that they are espousing? That makes no sense to me at all since I have elevated them in my own mind to be worthy of that consideration in the first place.

            Telling a story is only great for singular experiential situations. The rest must be lookedd at for the agenda, the purpose, the goal if you will, and then it becomes everyone’s story to duscuss

          • still can't log in says:

            “The subject of the story should be the one telling the story.” How many articles are written third hand? Other person’s observations? There isn’t, that I know of, a political article written here that’s written first hand. Do you really think it’s wrong that a white person have any say in how a black person is being treated?

            It’s funny how things happen. I happen to be having a late lunch with a couple of male friend, one of the two is black and a very close friend who I used to work with and was fondly known as “black Bill” because the other Bill was white. After white Bill passed away, black Bill maintained his name … but I digress.

            Technology is a wonderful thing. I pulled up the clip on my phone and shared it and asked his opinion. After voicing his disgust with what NAANCP said, I asked him to critique the conversation itself. He replayed it a couple of times and his conclusion was what I expected, given his view of what the NAACP said. His critique was focused on the content of the conversation. I then asked if he had any concerns as to who was having the discussion and he looked at me as though had grown a third eye on my forehead.

            The relationship I have with Bill and others with varying ethnic backgrounds is that which we look at society as not being of one color or the other but instead people, all shapes, sized and ages. This is the perspective I and many I know, come from. Many of our black friends have experienced that which I noted with Demetrius Minor and Tim Scott. I should note that some of these friends are professionals, two doctors, a dentist, and a couple of business owners. I’ve listened to their stories but what you’re saying is that because I’m a white guy, I should shy away from a commentary or discussion?

            Someday, if I have the time, I’ll share some of Bills comments, especially those related to black politicians. There is a lot that’s not being said but the truth is it’s hard to get people to say anything. That’s the question I left with Bill, why aren’t people speaking the truth about these politicians whom they feel have greatly failed the black community.

            Joanna, ya know I love ya like my drapes (isn’t that a line from Steal Magnolias)? I’m okay with people disagreeing with me, I respect you and know you respect me and that’s why I still hang out at GMP. But all I ask is that GMP start opening their minds to those who don’t agree with some of liberalism. Us conservatives aint so bad and sure don’t fit the stereotypes.

            Now, I have to go finish dinner for the love of my life. Got some cool plans for this evening.

            • I think what you said was really good stillnot. That’s what I was trying, but not perhaps as eloquently as you, that we are all, as educated people, looking at our friends as individuals, not as epitomes of race, and I engage with them, sometimes in agreement, sometimes not, and yet try to gain a different perspective. But I’m most concerned why even if we talkk as individuals they will not go there to call out the members of their group, or race or what have you when they have been failed. Instead they seem to support them even more. That to me is scary. I have called for the ouster of many of the right because I think they’re assholes. It concerns nme that Al and Jesse stay there, and I am positive that many in their audience finds them assholes too, but it seems like they are MY assholes so I need to support them. Maybe that’s just a human trait. Like letterman says, stupid human traits. Uhh, I mean tricks. I will ask my black friends about that soemtime, when I figure out a way to ask it without sounding like I’m condemning them in some way. Actually, in any way.

              I applaud the Allen Wests, and the like for their willingness to stand on their beliefs, knowing absolutely that they will be seen as sell outs by their own, and maybe patronized by the others. But these are strong people who I will follow. Colin Powell is one. Barak Obama is not. Nacy Pelosi is not. Harry Reid, definately not. Boehner not. Leon Panetta maybe. You see my point.

              • still can't log in says:

                Mark, a lot of people believe that Republicans don’t call out their elected and the truth is that we do and we do it especially when they say one thing and do the other. Last summer we had a protest in our area at the offices of one of our state representatives because of his recent actions.We had over 400 protesters.

    • Republican?

  16. ARealFather says:

    Wow, entire article of hate, judgments, & inaccuracies stemmed from one person’s negative FB comment?!?!?! Why can’t people write: wow great commercial or powerful, etc.. I mostly see hate & negative comments stem from the far left. And BTW, I googled ‘leftist intolerance’ & didn’t even see anything from FOX! How may pages back did you have to look to find that?

    It appears most readers here don’t ‘fact check’ you. Cheers!

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      I actually may have also used the word “hypocrisy” when googling.

      But hey, good thing you’re here to keep us intolerant folks honest!

    • Hey, I believe that there is a time and place for everything. Even Love Hate Violence and intolerance. That is a learned, now instinctive part of me. I must use balanced redirecting on myself…I do not think hatred in general is part of my psyche. Some acts cannot be witnessed with tolerance, some atrocities must be dealt with NOW. Very tough thinking to peruse….I am alive because someone acted timely and refused to walk away. This is my truth.

  17. Jillian Rainville says:

    I recently said that one must look into the mirror at the reflection of themselves and see their own biases and prejudices first, before then can actually see the world with clear eyes. Is this true? We are products of our environment, but even then we can grow and become better people without severe judgements on others. But that doesn’t mean to say, “turn the other cheek” either. I have been accused of being “better than them” and being self righteous. They no longer are high on my list of evolved and sensible people, but I still won’t reject them completely.

    • Mostly_123 says:

      “I recently said that one must look into the mirror at the reflection of themselves and see their own biases and prejudices first, before then can actually see the world with clear eyes. Is this true?”

      IMHO- No one can ever be truly unbiased, impartial or entirely objective (because, in large part, our reality is built on many subjectivities- where two seemingly opposite things can be subjectively, if not objectively, true). Just because one might not be able to succeed completely doesn’t mean one should stop, or that the exercise & mental discipline itself in deconstructing and understanding ourselves better is not its own reward. Both righteousness and awareness (‘self’ and ‘external’) are also, very inconveniently, subjective. It’s like blood-sugar levels; if you estimate them as either too high OR too low you’re headed for trouble either way. Diet and exercise might help- a diet of knowledge, and the exercise of self-reflection & interrogation.  

      Intolerance may be many things, but one thing it is definitely not is tool of persuasion (at least, not direct persuasion- although I presume it can peripherally inspire action/reaction from others, which may or may not be positive). Irrespective of the context, intolerance is usually a sign of recognition & resignation of that which CAN’T be reconciled or mutually accommodated. I may be intolerant of ‘bigotry’ or bigots; but I’d prefer to persuade them NOT to be bigots, even more than I’d prefer to be intolerant of them, or not abide by them. I guess it depends on the form one’s intolerance takes. If a person is intolerant of ‘fire’ and their intolerance takes the form of putting out fires, then I’d say their efficacy was pretty good- but one can’t extinguish an idea (right or wrong) as easily or as completely as one can a fire. Intolerance might move one to employ persuasion (or, conversely, isolation) from that which they cannot tolerate, but it’s not a persuader in and of itself. Intolerance, right or wrong, also connotes a smidgen of selfishness as well- ‘I know better than you’ – which may be right & proper, but it also runs counter to the notion of impartiality. After all, if one is condemned by someone they see already biased against them, one can dismiss that as inevitable. But who wants to fail a test of character when judged fairly, impartially and mercifully?    

      There’s too often an air of hopelessness and impotence tied up with intolerance. It’s like saying “You’re irrevocably lost, beyond all convincing or reasoning. I’ve given up on you.” Some views are -as people- are- upon great reflection, irreconcilable. If so, ‘intolerance’ shouldn’t be the first course of action by default; but it is bound to be the last. So, what form will it take; will one’s intolerance lead to constructive, destructive, or ambivalent actions?       

  18. I love it. I’m often tempted to fight fire with fire when it comes to issues. Of course, there’s certainly a danger. If you’re so intolerant of what you perceive as intolerance that you won’t listen to your “opponents” words, you might very well become what you hate. I’ve heard from lots of so called tolerant people whose intolerance makes them look petty in the face of better counterarguments, because they refuse to engage logically.

  19. Your article brings back horrible memories of the right wing “silent majority” that has morphed into the tea party. Yes, if we don’t speak up for what is right then our silence is considered as support and the intolerant will grow stronger on your timidity. An intolerant bully needs to be confronted otherwise he/she will feed on our passivity.

  20. I think we all have to acknowledge the racist and biased stuff in ourselves…I hear all kinds of stuff from relatives and co-workers in private….even amongst Asians, and between different regional cultures and dialects, I hear all sorts of comments…I guess it is easier to elevate yourself in the hierarchy of things by pushing down someone else…

  21. Luke Davis says:

    I’m a small l libertarian.

    I will defend anyone’s right to have their own view regardless of how different it is to mine. Right up to the point where you want to take someone else’s voice away from them, then I will be defending their voice against you.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Oh I think they should have the RIGHT to say it, but I also have the right to tell them that they’re being a bigoted asshole.

      • HAHAHA! I love that. we must stand for our values, and if that means our values DO NOT HARM others, but elevate them, whether it’s keeping them safe, seeing them as equal, or what have you, then I believe you should have the backbone to say something! If the evil-intolerant can say and do what they want, so should the good-tolerant (if that makes sense)!!

        In other words, there are many things in this world worth fighting for. And who do you think are the fighters?

  22. One cannot ask for a principle to include its antithesis.

    The entire point of the concept of tolerance….is to encourage tolerance. Intolerance is the exact opposite of this, and as such is not covered by the concept of tolerance.

    It is like saying “freedom” entails the right of people to restrict other’s freedom, without qualifier or quantifier. That’s not what the concept entails.

    It’s like “fucking for virginity”.

    The notion that those who are intolerance of intolerance are not being tolerant is a semantic argument (and a lazy one at that) put forward by people who think they’re being clever.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      You do follow that there are two different definitions for the word, right? That’s why I put in the quote from the dictionary.

      So, no, it’s actually not asking for a principle to include its antithesis, since the word has two different meanings.

      • I’m saying that’s what the people calling others intolerant for not tolerating intolerance are doing.

        One could appeal to the dictionary, but I would prefer that the above argument should be treated as ridiculous an argument as my freedom & fucking-for-virginity examples.

        • Joanna Schroeder says:

          Ah! It’s like a “Who’s On First” exercise!

          • Yeah, sorry – thought I’d been clear enough in my first post, but evidently not O_O

            It’s always interesting how often people will nitpick over what are essentially homonyms. Some people will do this if it suits an agenda as well.

            “Evolution is only a theory” is another classic. And I don’t think even creationists are incapable of parsing two homonyms.

  23. Joanna,

    You wrote: “I’m intolerant of people who perpetuate myths about the nature of Islam…” What are these “myths” you speak of?

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      First and foremost, that Islam is by nature a violent religion.

      And just so everyone’s clear, any comments that perpetuate such myths will be deleted.

  24. Can't log in says:

    “Our culture has accepted two huge lies. The first is that if you disagree with someone’s life style, you must fear or hate them. The second is that to love someone means you agree with everything they believe or do. Both are nonsense. You don’t have to compromise convictions to be compassionate.”

  25. Thanks. We all have a lot to learn about our fears and biases. I learned a lot about racism and intolerance when my wife and I wanted to adopt. When we first met, fell in love, and planned our future overlooking the ocean at U.C. Santa Barbara, we decided to have a child then adopt a child. We wanted our own “biological” child. But then thought, “why bring another child into the world when there are children who need loving parents and a good home.” After our son was born, we began the adoption process. The child they found was a 3 1/2 month old little baby girl. She happened to be African American, which was OK with us.

    Turned out we first had to deal with our own hidden racism. How could we not. We were both born and raised in the U.S. But over the years we also had to deal with the racism in the larger culture. Our daughter is now 42 years old and has 4 children.

    We’re still learning about racism, standing up for our daughter, grandchildren, and for all who still are impacted by a culture that is afraid of differences.

    Thanks for standing with us and others who are here to make a difference and who share Martin Luther King’s dream. “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.”

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Jed, thanks for your comment and for admitting that we all are products of a racist society and so we have to make conscious efforts to shake our own prejudices and the ways in which we contribute to racism.

      And I bet you are wonderful grandparents!

  26. Powerful words Ms. Schroeder!

    It’s really interesting because right now I’m living abroad. A person I work (who is native to the country I’m in) started using slang and acting like the Black people he often watches in movies. I laughed at him but warned him to never do that around Black-Americans he didn’t know very well.
    He felt ashamed and genuinely didn’t understand what the problem was. I tried to explain it to him (I’m Black-American) and he responded that if I were to pretend to be a Chinese person, most would find that funny.

    I had to further explain that we are sensitive to the differences between ourselves and others. That most of us strive to appear that the differences are irrelevant to the character of the person.

    Sometimes however, I think we’re too sensitive…but then something happens to remind me that I’m a foreigner, or Black, or female, or short, etc. and that’s when I want to just be treated right.

    And I’m all for being intolerant to people or souls being purposely mistreated.

  27. Allan Mott says:

    Great piece, Joanna, but I’ve never ever heard anyone on Fox News insist that “real” Americans should be educated, If anything, they pretty much insist the opposite.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Educated in their way, of course. Like, white people educated (suburban, middle class school and on to university).

      The Fox News set pretends to “stand for the working man” and then spends their entire time trying to convince people that supporting legislation that not only refuses to close tax loopholes for the wealthiest and allows corporate America to be come wealthier and wealthier and wealthier while middle class and lower in come folks become poorer.

      FoxNews doesn’t care about the working class, they only value the wealthy (and therefore traditionally-educated). And they don’t care about educating people who aren’t white and middle- to upper- class.

      And they CERTAINLY don’t want their readership to be educated from anyone other than themselves!!

  28. Long live this kind of intolerance. Thank you, Joanna, for telling it like it is. Your piece reminds me of JFK’s great quote: “The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, in times of great moral crisis, maintain their neutrality.”

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