Can liberalism tolerate non-liberals?

"What if modern people opted in large numbers to be bigots and racists?

"Bouglé turn to that question in 'The crisis of liberalism' (1902). The persistence of intolerance had come as a surprise... Dogmatic or sectarian relapses looked at worst as temporary, unsustainable deviations from liberal modernity's happy path. Recent trends had woken liberals with a jolt. They were at a loss. Should they open-mindedly 'tolerate intolerance' or use the powers of state to curtail racial and confessional prejudice?" -- Edmund Fawcett, Liberalism: The Life of an Idea, p. 168

The problem is, of course, unsolvable so long as liberals cling to the notion of liberalism being a "neutral framework." Liberalism is, in fact, its own value system, down on all fours, competing with every other one.

5 comments:

  1. How widespread and ingrained do think this attitude is in American society and its psyche? Do you think there are liberals who don't hold this belief?

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    1. Who don't hold what belief?

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    2. Value neutrality, or the "liberal illusion" as you call it.

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  2. It is asserted by many intellectual liberals, including many libertarians.

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    Replies
    1. I understand that, but I'm wondering how deeply you think it is embedded in American society and if you think there are liberals who are exceptions to it.

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