: willingness to accept feelings, habits, or beliefs that are different from your own
: the ability to accept, experience, or survive something harmful or unpleasant
The last couple of days there has been much discussion about that word and its meaning. We have been accused of being intolerant because of our choice to include rather than exclude people for whatever reason. There has been a person who thinks tolerance means her way and her way only. Her definition of the word means we must accept her beliefs as the ultimate and only truth and turn away from everything else. Hmm, that doesn’t quite add up to Merriam-Webster definition of tolerance being the willingness to accept feelings, habits, or beliefs that are different from your own.
Back in the 90’s, there was the Great Gen/Slash war in MFU. It was ugly and caused a great divide in MFU fandom. In the end it was decided that it didn’t matter, gen or slash, we were here for one reason – to celebrate our love of Napoleon and Illya. Nothing else mattered and that peace has held, albeit a bit shaky at times, since then.
Now this has come along and we provided a unified front, declaring it doesn’t matter. We are here to enjoy Napoleon and Illya. We are here to be with our friends and to laugh, to support, and to love. What form that love comes in doesn’t really matter; rather the ability to say, “I may not agree with you and I may not like it, but that’s okay.”
Communication, be it via a post, a written story, or posted photo/art/manip, is a key issue. Respect of everyone’s right to choose their path will hopefully move us through this incident and render us with a desire to be more respectful of everyone’s choice and their right to it. Some of us lost sight of this, but no more. Together we stand are not just pretty words. As long as we are united in our affection for MFU, we will easily see the passage of another fifty years together. I don’t think this is necessarily the outcome that was anticipated by the person who started all of this.
To me, that’s the meaning of tolerance and if that sticks sideways in someone’s throat, then so be it. We have survived this, yet another definition of tolerance, and hopefully it will make us stronger and even more patient with each other and our individual choices.