Choose the right word
zealot, bigot, enthusiast, extremist, fanatic
An enthusiast displays an intense and eager interest in something ( a skydiving enthusiast). A fanatic is not only intense and eager but possibly irrational in his or her enthusiasm; fanatic suggests extreme devotion and a willingness to go to any length to nurture that enthusiasm ( a fly-fishing fanatic who hired a helicopter to reach his favorite stream). A zealot exhibits not only extreme devotion but vehement activity in support of a cause or goal ( a religious zealot who got caught up in the lure of the cult). An extremist is a supporter of extreme doctrines or practices, particularly in a political context ( a paramilitary extremist who anticipated the overthrow of the government). But it is the bigot who causes the most trouble, exhibiting obstinate and often blind devotion to his or her beliefs and opinions. In contrast to fanatic and zealot, the term bigot implies intolerance and contempt for those who do not agree ( a bigot who could not accept his daughter's decision to marry outside her faith).