16 November 2012

Egypt: 'Political Tolerance is the Onset of Liberation and Constructing a Democratic Country'

press release

"SHAMS" center reminds about the significance of tolerance culture that is considered as the societal framework through which democracy transfers, and the basic principle that governs individuals' associations.

This framework provides the appropriate atmospheres for creative interaction among people and their societal organizations based on mutual respect and admit equal rights and equivalent opportunities. This makes the relation between tolerance culture and democracy extremely forceful and complementary as tolerance culture can't exist in a society without democracy, and democracy can't exist in a society without the rule of tolerance culture among people.

"SHAMS" perceives that the rule of tolerance culture doesn't represent only forgiving peoples when they make mistakes, but also accepting others as individuals, groups and gatherings with their different ideas, distinctive opinions, several ideological perspectives and religious beliefs. Actually the rule of tolerance culture means that people have freedom in their thoughts, opinions and doctrines, while the absence of tolerance indicates the deficiency of individual freedoms in general, nonexistence of equality among people and the domination of one ideological idea over others. This can empower a social category or a social class to monopoly the authority and prevent the majority of community individuals and classes from their legitimate rights.

SHAMS" as well warn from the failure of some electoral experiences in Arab countries, considering it a tool to build democratic experiences due to the missing tolerance culture. In spite of permitting to build and activate political parties, and the several mass media under the increased public orientation toward ideological extremity, it seems that opportunities for democracy success in the Arab world are still fragile and retreating. This signifies that enrooting tolerance culture inside community as a social and cultural value is the main and important condition to secure the success of democratic experience in each community.

SHAMS" confirms the essence to spotlight on the significance of religious tolerance since it's a concrete reality that should be handled proceeding from the mankind existence which involves the being of humanity as human gatherings who meet in the origin, the need to gather, the concern to live, the desire to master elements of life, the quest for urbanization and modernization and the eager to development and advancement, while differ in each gathering's ethnic, religious and cultural privacy. In this framework it seems that tolerance is the basic ground for building the civil society and setting its rules since pluralism, democracy, freedom of belief, accepting the difference in the opinion and thought, human culture, appreciating national charters and respecting rule of law are choices and certain human values which can't be retreated, abandoned or compromised. Tolerance is the key factor for building the civil society and activating its rules requiring mutual respect and joint appreciation.

SHAMS" emphasizes in this context that lack of tolerance leads to nonexistence of thought, absence of democracy, canceling human rights, rejecting dialogue and deliberation of authority beside expansion of aggression and discrimination. It should be taken into account that the absence of accepting the other culture, tolerance will and forgiveness ethics is one of the most negative factors that Palestinian community suffers from. Conflicts, elimination and tactical mobilized discourse are all reasons that hinder the dissemination and promotion of tolerance culture in the Palestinian society. Therefore, reinforcing tolerance either ethically or practically will be the major beginning to release humans from manners of slavery, oppression and repression. As well, accomplishing our aspirations in liberation, building a democratic state, advancement, justice, security and stability won't be without political sharing, and this requires political tolerance among all parts which basically need pure culture, education and political upbringing based on tolerance as well as accepting the other.

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