It seems to me that so much intolerance radiates from one of two places: either the desperate fear that somebody, somewhere, is having fun that we are scared to have; or the desperate need to shore up our shaky self-importance.
Toni Morrison once said, "If you can only be tall because somebody else is on their knees, you have a serious problem."
And it seems to me that I am profoundly lucky to have such a diversity of people in my life: Christians, Pagans, Muslims, atheists, agnostics, Jews, Unitarians, Erisians, Buddhists, Hindus. Persons who are gay, straight, bi, transgendered, asexual, poly, monogamous, or intersexed. Persons who consider reality tunnels highly negotiable concepts. Americans, South Africans, Canadians, denizens of Europe, the Caribbean, the British Isles, Japan, India. Persons of various skin tones and ethnicities. Reasonable conservatives and reasonable liberals and reasonable socialists. The odd Libertarian, nihilist, or Trotskyite. Persons who do not identify with a political philosophy. Military persons. Civilian persons. Persons who do not even identify particularly with the human species.
Moral persons, most of you. And it's not moral relativism; you are moral persons. You have an internally consistent and logical structure upon which hangs your own concept of your honor and the rules by which you live your lives. I'm pleased to know you.
There was a point in the very recent past when I was bit freaked out by the whole idea of fanfic/slash. Getting to know st_crispins and green_key and ndannais and kelliem and commodorified and przed really opened my eyes to what was going on there, and why it was fun, and the artistic intent behind it all. I used to be scared of Christians, but I met people like porphyrin and arcaedia and jmeadows (and a whole bunch more of you: I'm not going to run down the whole list), people who were willing to love me even though there are things about my beliefs that lie in contravention of theirs. Christians who believed in witnessing through their actions rather than their words. Those are two casual examples of ways in which my eyes have been opened, but I've learned so much from all of you, and from mrissa and katallen and froggie_spawn and makeshiftdaisy and was06066, from kendwoods and netcurmudgeon and ashacat and shesingsnow, and all of you--everybody who comments here, and everybody I know in real life.
Thanks, guys. For making me more human. And more humane, also.