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Irukandji's avatar

Why is bigotry okay, but violence is not?

Asked by Irukandji (4275points) January 10th, 2018

Since we don’t need the government telling us what can and can’t do, shouldn’t there be an explicit right to be a murderer? People kill themselves due to prolonged exposure to bigotry, so it can’t just be about protecting lives. And bigotry has been one of the biggest obstacles to civil liberty throughout history, so it can’t be about protecting rights. So why do we have to put up with one but not the other?

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10 Answers

stanleybmanly's avatar

bigotry and intolerance are perfectly legal until you infringe on another’s civil rights. By the same token its perfectly legal to want to kill someone or wish them dead.

MrGrimm888's avatar

It depends on the country. In the US, actions are what is usually punishable.

In some countries, government policies are practically based on bigotry. Civil rights are still a rarity for most people. Organized religion is the main issue, usually. The world is working on it, but it’s easier to root out violent acts, than try to tell what everyone is thinking.

LostInParadise's avatar

I am a little confused by your example of bigotry. The bakery case that you link to is an example where the verdict went against the bigot.

Bigotry is a pejorative term. It means discriminating against someone for improper reasons. Are there cases where it is okay to discriminate? One could argue that a person’s choice of friends discriminates based on certain perhaps subconscious criteria. Colleges discriminate in who they accept based at least in part based on high school performance. Employers discriminate in their hiring based at least in part on prior experience. These forms of discrimination are deemed acceptable.

When a business offers a public service and discriminates on irrelevant criteria such as race, religion, gender or sexual orientation then that is considered bigotry and is unacceptable.

kritiper's avatar

Violence means harm to others, either physical, material, or psychological. Bigotry doesn’t need to involve others.

Irukandji's avatar

I’m talking about bigoted actions here, not just prejudicial thoughts. Active bigotry goes beyond just holding prejudicial beliefs and always involves others. So I’ll ask again: why are bigoted actions perpetrated against others okay, but violence perpetrated against others is not?

@LostInParadise I didn’t link to any examples. I linked to specific comments where people implied that we need to put up with bigotry (that is, bigoted actions).

stanleybmanly's avatar

who says that bigotry is ok?

KNOWITALL's avatar

Bigotry is not okay, but since we don’t have thought police YET, there’s not much we can do except talk to people and try to change minds and hearts.

Violence is really never okay except in self-defense.

I think many people underestimate the number of bigots there are because it’s usually a familial trait passed down generation to generation. There are so many, and not just in flyover country.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Though I use it constantly, “flyover country” is a bigoted expression.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@stanleybmanly I live here so I can use it with impunity imo…lol

Irukandji's avatar

@stanleybmanly I gave links to two people who either said or implied that bigotry was okay. So do you have an answer to the actual question?

@KNOWITALL Telling people they can’t do something is not the same as tellings someone they can’t think something. So how about tossing out your trite dismissals and actually questioning your own beliefs?

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