A reasonable pluralism in values in society is desirable for a number of reasons, and comes at a number of levels. A diversity of values is inevitable in society, arising from the lack of objective value and an intellectually active people. However, transmission of values within society is also inevitable, and has been a function of culture since the origins of humanity. Liberal socialist societies, in their institutions and culture, will embed this tension into their fabrics. We first distinguish a pluralism of values from a pluralism of truths, and then discuss the levels across which this tension differentiates itself.
Philosophically, attempts to reach truth (even the definition of truth) are entangled with the values that form their metaphilosophy and dependent on the gross form of their inquiry. In practice, given the academic consensus on inquiry frameworks that are roughly empiricist, we adopt the common notion of a strict divide between statements/frameworks aiming at truth and those expressing values. We recognise that pragmatic and value-laden moves are needed at foundational levels for statements that seek truth, and that, these serving as axioms, truth-seeking statements can be made within widely divergent frameworks. We choose to enshrine empiricism as a system, and academic-style pursuit of truth as our own, dividing results of that enterprice categorically from other systematic thought (including such worthwhile efforts as philosophy and maths and such worthless efforts as astronomy). We explicitly mark the following as being value-enterprises rather than truth-enterprises (even as the systems may be pursued in ways that have rigour):
Pluralism in society exists across many levels. We distinguish between four primary levels of approval of an idea in society. In the first, an idea is heavily privileged, to the extent that it is treated as dogma in society, and acts and organising for the sake of alternate ideas is prohibited, prescribed, or heavily monitored (an example of this in our society is racial tolerance, another is that sexual relations with children are inappropriate). In the second, an idea is considered a held norm, taught as the dominant model by societal institutions (mainly education and other governmental forces), but with other ideas tolerated (support for capitalism or patriotism as ideas enjoy this status in our society). In the third, an idea has no special privilege and is part of ordinary mimetic flow. In the fourth, an idea opposes ideas that are privileged to some extent.
The arrangement of ideas, institutionally, into categories is best institutionally buffered from the short-term passions of a public, based on broad and liberal-but-responsible philosophical thought (this is a metavalue I hold). This acts to protect a society that is broadly offended but not harmed from hard prohibition of expressions of ideas, and to keep that society flexible enough to adapt to changing ideas by being reluctant but willing to give ideas privilege - long-cherished and held values (such as those taught in civics classes) may enjoy certain amounts of privilege through endorsement, but this status is one that merits special care in consideration for addition or removal.