It's So Hard Not to Hate You
In the past few weeks, the news reports of youth suicides has been alarming, to say the least. In the wake of these tragedies, we learn that bullying and/or bullyish behavior were involved, and that motivation for the bullying involved sexual orientation. We’ve seen celebrities unite to make change, and Facebook pages spring up offering support. Even Dan Savage, normally a bit snarky and sassy in his Savage Love columns came up with a campaign where GLBTQ people post videos describing their experiences to demonstrate that life gets better beyond bullying.
And through this all, I have been saddened, frustrated, annoyed… but I find at the end of the day the feeling that most consumes me is anger; an incredible desire to hate. I want to hate every priest, every pope, every two-faced televangelist who will stand in front of millions of numb-minded clods and explain how all of the ails in this country, and world, have direct correlation to Adam and Steve’s desire to pick out curtains and cohabitate. I want to hate these evil people. I want to hate them for the fact that they seemingly hate people like me, and train their flocks to do the same. And yet, I don’t believe they do hate me. Only some followers do.
Religion is an institution that was created and maintained to give the world a moral fabric, and to encourage behavior that would assure continuation of the race. As it grew, and divided more and more, it became less about continuing humanity, and more about increasing the power of the religious institutions. For as long as there have been gods, these same gods have been named as justification for war, torture, murder… all things that generally conflict on some level with the very moral fabrics that define the religions. And while we (as we have grown “civilized”) have changed the way these things transpire, they still do. It’s largely more subversive, and manipulated using technology and the media. Now, not only can we spread word mouth to mouth about a particular person or people, we can do it via television and internet. And we do. And so the sins of the father are perpetuated as the children bring what they see- which is often a struggle for control- into their own lives, and bully, beat, and berate those they deem as weaker or threatening in some way. And why shouldn’t they? If Jimmy goes to church and hears how homosexuals are destroying the earth, and then goes home and hears the same from Dad, and then hears the same from Dad’s cable “news” show, what is the next logical step? Seek and destroy that which would destroy us. What better way to garner approval.
And so it continues. This is not simply about anti-gay hate. It just so happens that is the one that hits home for me. This is about all bias crimes. Muslims have been suffering this bullshit now for a decade, and in the eyes of some will never live down the actions of a few zealots on 9/11. Many of the same holding that hate still complain if you make a correlation between priesthood and child molestation, and yet their generalizations are ok somehow.
I want so badly to hate all of you who think that way. It would be so much easier to just desire to put you all in in airplane and crash you into a cliff somewhere, along with Michael Bolton and Nickelback. But I can’t. I can never let myself hate you, and none of us can. When we resign to hate, we become that which we hate. Hate allows life to be viewed in only black and white, and when we allow our perspectives to tunnel, it’s hard to pull that camera back out again. And so I refuse to hate. I enjoy some of the grey way too much.
Well… except when it’s on my head. Thank you “Just For Men.”