I read an interesting post at a blog I follow entitled Dissenting in Part regarding the issue of Mormon tolerance and what it means. I was going to add my comments but it got lengthy, so rather than post an essay there, I will just add it here.
Mormons are tolerant in their own minds and according to their definition. Somehow Mormons lump tolerance and acceptance into the same definition. In other words, I know plenty of Christians that consider homosexuality a sin and are not accepting of the practice yet are tolerant of this group of citizens and their Constitutional rights to equality in treatment. Tolerance is not equivalent to condoning.
This all trails back to the inability of the majority of Mormons (and evangelical Christians) to separate their religious convictions with civil policies. How do you convince someone who believes that when Christ returns religious law will become civil law that in the mean time we have a wide variety of religions and beliefs and one cannot dominate at the expense, or discrimination, of all the others? Regardless of how sure you are that your particular brand of religion is the one true path that you believe in with every fiber of your being...
Tolerance is allowing obnoxious 19-20+ year old kids to canvas neighborhoods across America knocking doors to spread their religious convictions. Tolerance is allowing non-profit religious groups to own for-profit companies. Tolerance is having government officials meet with Church leaders to discuss upcoming legislation. Tolerance is freedom of religion but it is also freedom from religion.
Mormons are also pretty adamantly against smoking and drinking but I don't see tens of millions of dollars being pumped into legislative policies seeking to prohibit the sale and use of those vices. Tolerance. Mormons are against abortion as birth control and highly in favor of family yet there was no memo encouraging funding and support of parental notification being required for underage females 48 hours prior to having an abortion in California Prop 4. Tolerance.
I would echo that Christ also taught us to stand up against ridiculous laws imposed by those who were allegedly in positions of moral superiority. Regarding an issue of sexual fornication, which the True Believing Mormon will say is the exact issue at hand in Prop 8, Jesus instructed: "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone..."
I will grant you that Jesus in no way "condoned" fornication (hetero or homo) but what He did do in issuing that damning challenge is to turn away those that would attempt to execute punishment of a religious code or moral infraction via societal civil legislation.
“Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one's own beliefs. Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others.” - John Fitzgerald Kennedy, 35th U.S. President