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I can't imagine her saying that in a public meeting. I can
imagine her saying, “Each individual has the right.”
But she might think it.
She might think that. She certainly felt that we weren't
able to cope with the questions of family planning, but she would put
that in the context of an inconsistent society. On the one hand, a
society that is concerned about welfare dependency, and illegitimacy
and all the other things that we are disturbed about, and on the
other hand are against abortion or family planning or sex education.
She saw those inconsistencies, but never became a part of a crusading
group. See one of things that Mamie, more than I, was able to
accept--not passively, but intellectually--was the irrationalities of
our society, and the irrationalities of individuals. She had a
feeling it came with the present stage of development or lack of
development of human beings. I don't want to use the word “accept”,
but she could observe, without torture, inconsistencies.
Would the word “tolerate” be appropriate?
Not tolerate. She didn't tolerate stupidity, but she didn't
get herself involved in the debates about things. She would say what
she thinks, and if someone comes up with a different point of view
she could listen to it. If she thought it was irrational she would
conserve the energies she would expend in debating or refuting. She
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