Religious Intolerance from a Contemporary Viewpoint

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Introduction This essay seeks to argue the fact that religious intolerance is a vice that still exists, though on a smaller scale. History proves that religious intolerance has been a problem since time immemorial. In the Bible there is mention of the early Christians being persecuted for their beliefs by the Jews. Saul, who later converted to the Apostle Paul, led relentless campaigns against the Christians. Closer home, between 1885 and 1887, Kabaka Mwanga 2 persecuted more than 22 Christians because he felt that their allegiance to God caused them to be disloyal to him. It is believed that his anger was sparked by the fact that his Christian pages would not tolerate his homosexual advances due to their faith. Though homosexuality was frowned upon in Buganda culture, disobeying a Kabaka was unheard of. (Encyclopedia Britannica Online Encyclopedia) The examples cited above might have happened a long time ago but this vice has not been wiped out yet. There are cases of religious intolerance in contemporary times all around the world. They are happening around us, sometimes right under our noses. Before proceeding there are certain terms that need to be defined. Religious intolerance, as the name suggests, simply means not being able to tolerate certain acts on religious grounds. Webster’s new encyclopedic dictionary defines intolerance as the state or quality of being unable, or unwilling to endure while ‘religious’ simply means as a result of religion or faith. This leads us to the definition of religious intolerance as the state or quality of being unable or unwilling to endure certain practices and beliefs that are different from your own religious faith. According to ‘Fighting Religious Intolerance: Portraits of Hate, Lesso... ... middle of paper ... ... 6. Mulders, A. (2010). Persecution of Christians in Jos (2) Retrieved on 9th October 2011 from http://www.iirf.eu/fileadmin/user_upload/PDFs/Persecution_of_Christians_in_Jos_2.pdf 7. Mushi, S.S. (2001). Conceptual and Historical Perspectives on religion-Politics Relations. A paper presented at Diamond Jubilee 26th-28th November. Dar - es - Salaam. 8. Tahzib, G.B. (1996). Freedom of religion or belief: Ensuring effective international legal protection. Martinus Nijhoff Publishers: Hague. 9. The Tandem Project. United Nations, Human Rights Council Universal Periodic Review. 6th May 2010. Retrieved on 11th October 2011 from http://www.tandemproject.com/issue_statements/statements/2010/112410_upr.htm 10. Webster’s New Encyclopedic Dictionary. (1993). Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers Inc: New York. 11. World Book Encyclopedia (2001). World Book Inc: Chicago.

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