Nomi M. Stolzenberg

Sometimes ‘Un-American’ Is Actually Ultra-American

America’s proud tradition of tolerance has lately been put to the test. Islam is the current target, succeeding Catholicism and Judaism as the religion bearing the brunt of a less proud tradition of “Americanism.” Religious intolerance is not, of course, a peculiarly American phenomenon. What makes the American experience of intolerance distinctive is that it coexists so constantly with a deep-seated commitment to religious freedom and toleration.