Friday, May 18, 2012

The Growth of Hate

This article sheds light on a trend that I've been seeing for a while. I make a point of visiting sites like The Blaze, Drudge Report, and Fox News almost daily. On these sites, it's very clear that many of the commenters have quite a bit of hostility towards minorities. I've posted some of the unsavory comments I've found before, and it always disturbs me what people will say on the relative anonymity of the Internet.

To be sure, there seems to be an increased amount of racial tension going around America. Part of it is due to having our first minority President. Part of it is due to things like the media circus around Trayvon Martin. And part of it is due to the fact that minorities are starting to take up more of our total population than Caucasians. All these things together, plus the stress and anger around financial meltdowns and failing government have sparked outrage among certain groups.

The problem of hate is not a purely conservative or liberal issue. It goes beyond politics, even as it affects political discourse. But the truly insidious thing about racism is that those who believe these things don't believe it's wrong. I remember seeing bumper stickers of the stars and bars that claim "It's heritage, not Hate." That might be how that person feels, but the problem is that the confederate flag is a symbol of hate, a legacy of violence and racial inequality, and that can't simply be washed away by a person claiming it's just their heritage and they have a right to express it.

While hatred and racism have been a stain on American history and culture of a long time, it is a great concern that groups with malicious intent are so prevalent, and getting more numerous all the time. On places like The Blaze, you have people talking about armed rebellion against the government and the second Civil War. On Fox News, you have people talking about Obama being a Muslim, and talking about taking the rights of citizens away. These are not idle or incendiary things, and there receive no reprimand (often, their celebrated and echoed in other places). There are those who are threatening liberals, and anyone who disagrees with them. And again, this is not simply to be mean, but what people honestly believe.

I hope that we can move past hateful rhetoric, and see a day when this kind of incendiary speech is no longer prevalent. While people have the right to say hateful things, we should be concerned about the health of our society when we see how many people are joining groups with malicious intent towards their fellow Americans. We need to support each other, not attack one another, and embrace the multiculturalism that America has. It sets us apart, and will help to define us in future generations as the nation that put peace and brotherhood before hatred and discrimination.

No comments: