Queen’s speech an attack on intolerance

Queen Beatrix used her annual Christmas speech to criticise intolerance and increasing individualism in society.

‘Coarseness in word and deed are eating away at tolerance’ and discussion is being replaced by hardened standpoints, the queen said. People are becoming tarred with the same brush and prejudices taken as fact, she said.
The queen also criticised the way individualism was giving way to egoism. ‘If we lose sight of what binds us all, we are undermining society,’ the queen said.
‘A society which turns in on itself closes its eyes to the wider world… We must focus attention on the fear and unhappiness that other population groups can experience,’ the monarch said. ‘We must make sure that hurt feelings do not translate into desperation and agression.
The queen said that it could not be expected that everyone thought, did and believed the same thing. ‘ While people were free to practice their own religion and ideology, everyone must obey the same law, she said.

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