Some of the nonsense conservatives say makes sense if you subscribe to their magical beliefs about evil, according to which evil seems to spread like a contagion. On this view, you can be infected with evil just by being near evil things or evil people. On this view, evil spreads like the flu—the equivalent of anti-bacterial hand gel is the armor of prayer.
Merely having a Buddhist temple next door could ruin your faith in Jesus. Having an establishment in your neighborhood that serves alcohol could destroy the neighborhood. On this view, mere exposure to evil (or sin or sinful behavior) can “rub off” on others and make them sick as well.
If you don’t believe in the evil-is-contagious theory, you’ll be flabbergasted when conservatives insist that gay marriage can destroy society. But if you hold this view, it makes absolutely perfect sense.
The problem is that these magical beliefs about evil contagion are flat-out wrong.
We should not be tolerant of this view; we should debunk it every time we get the chance.