Origins of Hate

With all that has gone on lately, especially lately the word hate has come up and been acted on in a way that is overwhelming and repugnant. We have over the course of the last ten years been witnessing domestic shootings that seem pointless and originating from those we would classify as seriously depressed to the point of being just plan crazy. We know that random acts of horror have been perpetrated on the innocent for no other reason than someone has lost their way and their mind. The recent acts of violence, however are of a very different origin though not unfamiliar to our history.

There was a line in a song from the musical South Pacific that said, you have to be carefully taught. Carefully taught to be prejudice and hate anyone who is so different that they need to be watched, shunned, or eradicated. However, not since McCathyism has fear been so nationally reinforced and spoken to in the most horrific manner. Those who ‘have been carefully taught’ as well as those feeling so deeply disenfranchised believe they are being somehow patriotic by killing those who are different. When hate and the deadly acting out on those beliefs seems to make one a good card carrying member of some new order, we are moving into the flagrant ‘dark side of the force’ of pure evil.

The origins of hate commence when children are brought up to be socialized to inately believe they can never get ahead or actualize their dreams. They are taught that there are those who are “not like us” as well as more privileged deserving to be hated or projected on. Thus, this way of behaving and believeing becomes the normal way of thinking and acting. In essence, never having to look deeper at one’s own responcibility and potential or even ever believe it is possible to be more. This lack of possibilities begets viewing those who were not given this negative message and have therefore moved ahead, as deserving of hated. The groups that are wrong or too different from those who are taught to be disenfranchised are the easy scapegoats for all the woes experienced by this self fulfilling prophecy of being less. As in another movie,  Pretty Woman when upon hearing that she had great qualities, she says, the negative is easier to believe. When you been weaned on hearing that its everyone else’s fault for how things are and if only “they” were gone will things be right for “us” makes fertile ground for bigotry and hated.

In fact, all these people who feel disenfranchised and pushed aside are horribly alone and hopeless. They anaesthetize depression and worthlessness with substances coupled with blame and hate. Ideally, what they need is to be reached out to with encouragement and a process offered to them by which they can learn to believe in themselves and achieve differently. Obviously, if this were done at the elementary school level the outcome would be more fruitful.

Until we all get on the band wagon of helping and understanding where hate and bigotry come from, we will never have an inroad to healing a severe problem in our country. BUT, along with this we must have leaders who promote this perspective and attitude, while condemning scapegoating differences and hateful violence.

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