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Packer's 'tolerance'
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

I gagged last Saturday when President Boyd K. Packer of the LDS Quorum of the Twelve said: "Tolerance is a virtue, but, like all virtues, when exaggerated it transforms itself into a vice. We need to be careful of the 'tolerance trap' so that we are not swallowed up in it."

Although not specific, it was clear that Packer was speaking of same-sex marriage, and he and his fellow leaders are anything but tolerant on this issue. Tolerance isn't to endure something you can't change. No, it is "to allow to be done without prohibition, hindrance; to put up with."

Tolerance is to allow something, even if you don't like it; to live and let live. If you eschew alcohol because you believe it's wrong, tolerance is supporting laws that allow others to drink. Prohibition wasn't tolerance; it was intolerance.

With gay marriage, Mormons try hard to outlaw it — that's not tolerance, and surely not "exaggerated" tolerance.

Tolerance is a virtue necessary for our diverse society. But with same-sex marriage, Mormons like Packer are intolerant. Damning committed love between adults of the same sex who are wired to love that way is not virtue. It is cruel.

Aaron Davis

Salt Lake City

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