It never ceases to amaze me that in the midst of expressions of love and positive feelings about our world, there is such an abundance of hate. Hate is disguised in many ways and some is just out there for all to see. The trouble is the problem is getting worse and many in society are resigned to accept it. What is the main contrast between love and hate? There is one measurement that is pretty consistent.
Have you ever noticed, you don’t have to have a justification to like a friend? You don’t need to love someone and qualify it with I love them because? Now hate is different. The word hate is a sharp jagged edged word so it’s rarely used as the operative feeling. No hate is disguised under a mountain of justification, and qualified by a perceived grievance. There are trigger words to help you get the message. Remember Archie Bunker in the old TV show? It was two words that came up time and again, Those People.
I am bringing this to your attention today because there are any number of social media sites and internet websites that are counting on you, to unknowingly spread their hate messages. When you are about to share something take a second look and ask, does this look or sound right? How is a message of hate disguised? Here are two statements similar but one is a wedge.
A If you say Merry Christmas instead of Happy Holidays click like.
B Today our traditions are under attack, (Targetted Group Name Here) are offended by the words Merry Christmas. Share if you say Merry Christmas.
The whole immigration issue has brought more love, confusion, misconception and hate than any other theses days. Here are the three main categories of those coming to our shores and a brief explanation of how the system works.
a.Legal Immigrant: Someone who made a conscious plan to to come to our country and did the paperwork in advance.
b.Refugee: A refugee must set foot on Canadian soil and ask for protection from their country of origin because their life is in danger. It does not mean they are given citizenship it means they get to make their case. Some are given safe haven, others are sent packing.
c.Migrants: The migrant has not bothered to go through the process nor are they a refugee. They have no legal claim to be hear. Often as not they claiming refugee status which is not a valid claim.
I hope I have brought some clarity for future discussions. The point I am trying to make here is, we cannot fairly lump all who come to our shores in one basket. When we do that we open the doors for those who have ulterior motives and set out to distort the facts. So where do the seeds of hate get their power to germinate?
When people feel threatened they band together in their own identifiable groups. This happens in many places. In Africa it was prevalent between the Hutu and Tutsi tribes in Rwanda. Pakistan became a country of its own out of hatred between the religious groups.
Hate stems from fear of those that become the identified target. The things said don’t have to be true they just have to be continually repeated. Another prime ingredient is ignorance. Think about this for a moment.
My father once said in some cases there is a thing called well meaning ignorance. He said it is more destructive than intentional ignorance, because it is often repeated as fact by the uniformed.
Hate requires a scapegoat, usually the most vulnerable because they are easy prey. Hate is like a torn scab on the soul. It requires constant cultivation. The images and facts disappear into the realm of rhetoric and like a fungus it spreads its destructive seed.
The destructive nature of hate getting out of control is not limited to Africa or Asia. Europe bore witness to two conflicts that went on for decades in Ireland and in the Basque Region of Spain. The real problem is we are not immune. The United States is on the slippery slope. A wave of National incivility has all the danger signs of becoming a momentary mainstream concept.
The truth is with today’s internet anywhere can be a generator for hate. Some want to blame social media. Social media can only do so much. It is like finding a group of phone scam artists.
The real place to start is with ‘us’. Before we share … be aware.
I have an example. Some time ago I was asked to share something that was said to have originated with the Canadian Legion. Instead of passing it on I contacted the Legion. It was a twisted statement that had no basis in fact. Which points out we are probably the best people to police our social media sites after all those sites are our new playground and as such we should endeavor to play nice in the playground.