I'm sick of the hatred. I know that it has always been there. Since I don't watch TV (except soccer—and I know, there's some ugliness in the beautiful game), I rely on the Worldwide Web to keep an eye on it. I'm not giving up the Web any time soon, so I'd appreciate people in my life taking their hatred elsewhere if they can't cure themselves of it.
So here is my autumnal equinox throwdown.
If we disagree on policy prescriptions for actual reasons, we can still be friends.
However, if you bear any hatred toward any category of anthropoid mammals (i.e., people) based on their nationality, ethnic origin, religious beliefs, socioeconomic status, family status, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical ability, pregnancy, or other traits that might differ from yours, feel free to fuck off.
If you bear any hatred toward other anthropoid mammals based on their political views or partisan affiliations—even if you can prove conclusively that those political views pose a direct threat to the life, health, or welfare of you or the people you love—please look within yourself and redirect that hatred into something productive.
I address the following to my fellow travelers on the left. It is too easy for those of us who consider ourselves liberal or progressive to hate self-described conservatives. After all, they seem to have no trouble hating us. These people became conservative (reactionary, perhaps even fascist) for various reasons. In his book Moral Politics, Dr. George Lakoff attributes a lot of conservative ideology to the Strict Father model of families as a metaphor for entire nations, versus the liberal-friendly Nurturant Parent model.
Perhaps the religious and national narratives they have been fed throughout their lives lead our conservative brethren to conclude that other ways of living are inferior, that anyone with the bad sense to be poor or dark-skinned in the US just needs to learn why God gave them bootstraps.
They may believe that capitalism is ordained by God because that is what they have been taught since childhood, or because they truly believe that God has engineered capitalism to bless them with wealth, in this nation where even the poor have more than the average citizen in many countries.
Almost certainly, the central message of compassion and loving-kindness taught by Buddha, Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed has been obscured in, or omitted from, their lessons.
Disagree with your political foes. Disagree vehemently. Fight back in self-defense if you must. But rise above hatred. You are better than that. Understand what instills people with different beliefs. Hating the Trumps, Palins, Huckabees, and Coulters of the world only feeds the all-consuming fire and makes them shine more brightly. We can defeat them without resorting to their tactics.
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."—MLK. This is not a message of conciliation, not a call for us to be good, compliant Negroes. This is a message of revolution, of overturning centuries of domination through force of arms and exchanging it for soul-force.