Hate exists, but we get along much better than the news would imply

Many of us have highlighted the hate rhetoric and racism that has come more to the surface. Domestic hate groups are on the rise and we have a president whose former attorney and fixer called a “racist” under oath to Congress.

Yet, we should not lose sight of most Americans are getting along much better than indicated. They are coming together to help people during this virus. Good news stories do make the news, but they occur in greater number than indicated by coverage.

“If it bleeds, it leads,” the saying goes, so news tends to focus more on the bad stories, as does the president. The president looks for stories to exploit, as do many pseudo-news outlets. They make a story national to call attention to a point they want to make. That is why the president made such a big deal out of Colin Kaepernick, as he knew he could divide people with it.

What we need more of is the silent many to condemn the actions of the newsmakers on the negative side. They need to be spotlighted. The words of a recent post ring true – “Mr. president, if you cannot add value, please stop talking.”
The same goes for relatives spewing hate filled rhetoric.”Uncle Bob or Aunt Sally, I would appreciate you not condemning folks like that.” Or,” I am sorry you feel that way, as I do not” and leave the room. If we leave the room on enough folks citing a brief reason why, it might make them take notice.

True story. My father-in-law lived in the country and kept a loaded rifle in his closet, which I did not know he had until my boys saw it. When I asked him if it was loaded, he said yes. I asked him if he would unload it, as we cannot allow his grandchildren to be around a loaded weapon. He did so. It was an earnest and respectful request that he heeded.

Children learn bigotry from adults, so we can do the same when a relative or friend goes off on a group, as I did with the rifle. We just need to be straightforward and not chew anyone’s head off.

So, yes we have hate and it seems to be more open, but we need to not tolerate it and tell people so.

10 thoughts on “Hate exists, but we get along much better than the news would imply

  1. I agree with everything you wrote. That said, hate is a curious topic, much depends on where you live. In Canada hate speech is a crime – spoken, written, illustrative content aimed at race, gender, sexual orientation or religion in violation of Canadian charter of rights and freedom is criminal. Things like denying the Holocaust, distributing anti-Muslim posters, victimizing LGBTQ citizens. In America, hate isn’t a crime until there’s a physical assault. Sigh.

    • Notes to Ponder, Canada has its act together moreso than the US on a number of fronts. We value freedom of speech, but do not condemn it enough when it goes a bridge too far. We use that “fire in a crowded theater” example as inappropriate speech, but it needs more examples, in my view.

      A good example is the church group in Kansas that would picket a military funeral of a veteran because it does not like the gays in the military position. But, what made me feel good is when another group picketed in front of them to block the view of the bereaved family from these strident folks.

  2. Folk in general do get on together, unless there is not the constant soft rains of reason coming from above, the lands are parched by the whispering winds of hate and there comes the one smouldering of anger.
    The danger is the visceral hatred and astonishing ignorance which Humanity is capable of. These passions lurk just below the surface and it does not take much to ignite them.
    I find it impossible to engage in a dignified debate with any purveyor of bigotry, no matter how they dress it up, and in doing so become their mirror image and do not feel unique in that.
    Thus in the USA where a freak of your voting system occupies the Whitehouse and has made no attempt to unite the nation how long before somewhere you witness a full repeat of Bloody Kansas?

    • Roger, just like one should not argue with a street preacher, it is hard to argue with someone carrying an assault weapon. Intimidation is part and parcel with that picketer’s thinking, so it could not and should not be construed as civil protest.

      I did see GOP Senators breaking with the president on yet another inane accusation regarding President Obama and Michael Flynn. For some reason, Trump wants to return Flynn to the White House using him as an example of malfeasance by others, with no proof. The Senators said they would not investigate this.

      Trump was told by Obama and his own people not to hire Flynn. He did so. Flynn does something treacherous and then lies to the FBI. Barr has said he will not pursue the case and 1,900 former Justice people are calling for Barr’s resignation.

      As Lt. Col. Ralph Peters said on CNN, Trump is all about Trump. He does not care about our country. And, the sooner people realize this, they will see through his con act. Keith

      • The infuriating thing about him is Keith I feel that if put in a room with a person willing to stand up for themselves he would crumple and storm out 10 times out of 10.
        ‘I’ll sais it once and I’ll say it again’…..
        He is nothing but the product of 50,000,000 people’s fears and prejudices, surrounded by the trapping of an office.
        As a person, nothing.

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