By Rebecca Hagelin
Culture challenge of the week: Tolerance gone wild
“Of course I dislike the Nazis. But who is to say they’re morally wrong?” The shocking statement was made to a college professor in New York by one of his students, as documented by author Kerby Anderson in a much-needed book, “Christian Ethics in Plain Language.” Mr. Anderson reports that the professor “said that he has never met a student who denied the Holocaust happened. But he also reported that 10 to 20 percent of his students cannot bring themselves to say that killing millions of people is wrong.”
This is certainly an indictment of how modern society has made a false religion out of “tolerance” and how we adults have failed to teach that there are, indeed, moral absolutes. What evidence more strongly proves the dangerous folly of moral relativism than young people who can’t distinguish between learning to “tolerate” what they merely “dislike” and recognizing what is, on its face, evil? We’re in real trouble when even the most egregious evils can’t be named as such.
Recent surveys that reveal a growing number of youth believe that lying and adultery are acceptable behaviors indicate that we are headed for serious trouble as a society. We’ve become so obsessed with what is “politically correct” and the need not to “offend” that we are failing to teach the principles that every civil society must uphold in order to survive.
Some truths are supposed to be self-evident. Yet even our Founding Fathers saw the need to clearly state them as such. Jeff Myers, a recognized expert in leadership development who has trained some two million people in mentoring and worldview understanding, warns, “We live in what may be one of the first generations in Western Civilization that is not intentionally preparing to pass its values to the next generation.”
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