I'm adding Take Down Tolerance Tuesday to my meme box. People talk about tolerance and inclusion together often as if they are interchangeable. I think they are related, but different. According to dictionary.com, tolerance is a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward opinions and practices that differ from one's own. I think the distinction between tolerance and inclusion is eloquently stated in this exerpt from the What is Inclusion? article by Shafiq Asante(I encourage you to go to the link and read the entire article.):
Inclusion is recognizing our universal "oneness" and interdependence. Inclusion is recognizing that we are "one" even though we are not the "same". The act of inclusion means fighting against exclusion and all of the social diseases exclusion gives birth to - i.e. racism, sexism, handicapism, etc. Fighting for inclusion also involves assuring that all support systems are available to those who need such support. Providing and maintaining support systems is a civic responsibility, not a favor. We were all born "in". Society will immediately improve at the point we honor this truth!!
Tolerance acknowledges the fact that we are different and implies that a person will "tolerate" you. Meaning, they are not choosing to exclude you, but they are not necessarily choosing to include you either. When I look at it this way, inclusion is so much more favorable than tolerance. I think about the times in my life when I have just tolerated people, especially ignorant people. Then I think about the times in my life when I'm sure people were just tolerating me. Both cases are unfortunate, and my goal is to work towards inclusion and being what fellow blogger from the desk of...me refers to as a filler instead of a dipper.