Tolerance | Teen Ink


October 29, 2008
By Anonymous

Dear Wind:

I wish you could take the words I now whisper to the people of the World like you do with the coquettish and playful breeze you possess which puts a smile on people’s faces. But in my case, Wind, I’d ask you to take one simple word to all of humanity. It would be a word that would bring relief to anyone who has been subjected to discrimination or has had their ideals questioned. That word would be tolerance.

In order to carry this word on one of your journeys, it would have to be defined for those that are ignorant of its meaning. The dictionary defines tolerance as patience or indulgence. For me, tolerance is the ability that one has to respect everyone and everything that surround us. For example, tolerance means that one can respect religions, cultural differences, customs and beliefs of all that inhabit our World. Tolerance also means that one has the ability to accept words or gestures that hurt or offends us without retaliating. It is an ability to accept that we are all different, unique and need to express ourselves. As you can see, Wind, my request is unique and very important. I don’t think you will ever have such an important job to do.

I feel that if everyone had the patience or tolerance to accept what is different, nothing would be affected negatively. Imagine, Wind, that you decided to play a trick on someone. For example, you blew a gust of wind that caused a huge wave and angered the Sea. The incident would most likely cause an argument between the both of you. It would seem small to you but not to the Sea. Now, what if the Sea tolerated the incident? What if the sea understood that it was a simple joke? There would be no argument or consequences. What I am trying to say is that if we recognized the power of being tolerant, we would avoid most of the conflicts that face our World. There would be no wars!

Tolerance is what Talion’s law should have promoted instead of “an eye for an eye” which was common in ancient civilization and medieval times. Tolerance is what Martin Luther King, Jr. preached all of his life and tolerance is the idea I remember whenever I hear my mother say, “Sergio, all adults must be respected even if you don’t agree with their words or actions.” Tolerance is something we must have towards all people that cross our paths and spend time with us.

Wind, I would be very grateful if on this occasion, you would take my message to all parts of the World. I want in those hearts a desire to be tolerant and in the faces of those who are tolerant, a smile when they realize that being tolerant is an understanding that we cannot discriminate because we do not think alike. Tolerance is that only word I wish that you carry to the other members of our planet. Tolerant is what we all must be.

The author's comments:
I'm an 8th grade student who enjoys playing soccer, and writing.

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This article has 4 comments.

on Mar. 18 2016 at 4:52 pm
ScarletCity PLATINUM, High Ridge, Missouri
40 articles 4 photos 68 comments

Favorite Quote:
Anything that can be done, can be undone. ~Scarlet City

I liked how it was written as a letter. I would've never thought of that. But, there is a time for tolerance, and a time to stand up. Sometimes the world misreads a situation.

on Mar. 14 2016 at 6:29 pm
Lucy-Agnes PLATINUM, Clarksville, Ohio
22 articles 0 photos 53 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Have the courage to have your wisdom regarded as stupidity. Be fools for Christ. And have the courage to suffer the contempt of the sophisticated world." - Justice Antonin Scalia

Alright, first of all this piece was really well-written and lyrical. Second, I deeply disagree with the author that "tolerance" is the word the world needs to hear. I believe in LOVE, not tolerance. There is a really big difference. Tolerance looks calmly at things it disagrees with and says, "I'll accept it, I'll ignore it." Love looks at things with a burning passion and, when it sees something it disagrees with, shouts, "No! This is wrong. This is not helping the world I love so much. I'm going to fight to protect what's right, and I'll fight for all my life, no matter what the cost." Our world has heard the word "tolerance" far too much in the last decade, and it's because of "tolerance" so many evils continue to exist. But "love" is a word that has been underused or misused to a tragic degree. Please, please, let's not tolerate one another. Let's "love one another, deeply from the heart."

ElyseA BRONZE said...
on Nov. 4 2015 at 3:08 pm
ElyseA BRONZE, Halloween Town, Louisiana
4 articles 0 photos 3 comments
Throughout the entire piece I was nodding, saying “yep,” or clapping. I agree wholeheartedly and I wish everyone would read this, or at least this sentence: “Because hate creates division and so logic says to hate another person is to hate yourself only to ‘progress’ the division of a species possibly blindly or possibly guided.” This was brilliant.

on Nov. 8 2008 at 5:32 am
Loved the piece. Well done.