Rev. Christine Robinson And "Less-Than-Perfect Tolerance" On The Part Of Her Fellow U*Us. . .
"I was mostly aware of conservatives or Republicans leaving after being subjected to less-than-perfect tolerance on the part of their fellow UU's, or just weary of being a minority,"
So just what counts as "less-than-perfect tolerance" on the part of your fellow Unitarian*Universalists Rev. Robinson? Something like this considerably "less-than-tolerant" blog post by your fellow U*U and professional colleague Rev. Cynthia P. Cain? "Less-than-perfect tolerance" that I saw fit to reproduce verbatim in my TEA blog as a fine example of U*U anti-Republican intolerance, if not outright anti-Republican bigotry?
Enough of U*USPEAK. How about ditching the PC euphemisms and engaging in the kind of "straight talk" that Senator John McCain is reputed to engage in from time to time?
Update Monday November 10, 2008, 2:00 pm-ish
I felt I that should clarify and expand upon why I was less than perfectly impressed with Rev. Christine Robinson's blog post that spoke about anti-Republican, or more broadly anti-conservative, intolerance in her U*U congregation. So I have just posted the following follow-up comment to her blog. I have made one slight revision to this version of it to underline my point -
It should be obvious, but perhaps it needs to be specifically pointed out here, that when you say that "conservatives or Republicans" have left your congregation "after being subjected to *less-than-perfect* tolerance on the part of their fellow UU's" you are effectively suggesting that they are what former UUA President Rev. Dr. John Buehrens would call "overly sensitive souls" who just can't deal with relatively minor, if not absolutely minimal, intolerance of their political orientation as it were. By clearly playing down the level of intolerance that these people have been subjected to in your church you come across as being somewhat condescending and patronizing, and even effectively condoning that intolerance. That impression is reinforced by your rationalizing the loss of your Republican and conservative members by asserting that "moderate Republicans had become Democrats, or at least voted that way."
There is no question that you are minimizing the amount and/or degree of anti-Republican or broader anti-conservative intolerance that exists within your congregation, to say nothing of other U*U congregations that are rather less than welcoming to Republicans and other political conservatives. You are also suggesting that the members who left your congregation were not "moderate Republicans". If Republicans and conservative members felt compelled to leave your congregation as a result of anti-conservative intolerance you could at least give them credit for putting up with, and even forgiving, a fair bit of such intolerance before deciding that enough was enough. . . I might add that the same principle applies to those many people who have been subjected to what you might call "less than perfect" welcoming of their Christian or otherwise theistic religious orientation in U*U "Welcoming Congregations" and have felt compelled to seek more tolerant, accepting and welcoming religious community elsewhere, or have simply given up hope of finding a genuinely liberal* religious community as a result of their "less-than-perfect" experience with the denomination that pretends to be the most liberal religion of them all.
* see definition 7
Update 2 Monday November 1o, 2008, 6:30 pm-ish
Rev. Christine Robinson responded to my above comments within half an hour of my posting the second one. She said -
For somebody who knows nothing about the congregation, Robin, you are certainly sure of your prescriptions and your attributions. How liberal are you being, in the classic sense of the word?
I only just noticed her defensive response minutes ago and responded with this follow-up comment -
I don't think I need to know more about your congregation than you have already written here to be able to reasonably make the comments that I have made here Rev. Robinson. Perhaps you can clarify things by letting people know what exactly constitutes "less than perfect tolerance" in your congregation though. I think that I am being quite liberal in the classic sense of the word in firmly and forthrightly speaking out against anti-Republican, and more broadly anti-conservative, as well as anti-Christian and more broadly anti-religious, intolerance in the U*U World much of which cannot be reasonably described as only "less than perfect tolerance" as my own situation and Rev. Cynthia P. Cain's vitriolic blog post handily proves.