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Show tolerance in times of protest

Show tolerance in

time of protest

Americans met the suggestion of a rapid military assault to force the Iraqi Army from Kuwait with either a sense of relief and confidence or one of disappointment and foreboding. For supporters of Operation Desert Storm, the United States and its allies halted the growth of a shocking tyrant and liberated a close ally; to opponents, President George Bush embarked on a reckless, speedy path toward war that would do little to solve the Middle East's complex problems.

In this era of partisanship and protests, members of the MIT community should tolerate and respect others and diffuse the danger of confrontation between the advocates of various beliefs.

Activists should remember that one of their goals is to reach those who are still unsure of their opinions on important issues. These people will be far more interested in logical appeals than anger and violent hatred. The further any group retreats into its own rhetoric, the narrower its chances of gaining support.

War supporters -- since when is peace un-American? Peace supporters -- how can you label as murderers people who believe that some causes are worth dying for? The next time you are planning a march to halt traffic or hang antagonistic posters, stop to think about what targets you are aiming at, and what peripheral damage your attacks will cause.