Look around you, my friends. Hate. Everywhere. At first I thought to myself “this is worse than it has ever been”. Then I remembered the Holocaust, two World Wars, the Crusades, the Inquisition. Maybe this is just the next wave. It seems worse because the global population is the most it has ever been, so there is more hate noise spewing forth. But is it worse per capita? Probably not. Too many people shouting out hate for “the other side” rather than listening, comprehending, learning: the very things humans pride themselves on being able to do that allegedly separate us from the rest of the animal kingdom.
"The living fabric of the world is slipping through our fingers" Biologists say 1/2 of all species face extincton https://t.co/mBR6h3xk2h
— Lenore Taylor (@lenoretaylor) February 25, 2017
This time IS different though. This time our home is at stake.
“Rich western countries are now siphoning up the planet’s resources and destroying its ecosystems at an unprecedented rate,” said biologist Paul Ehrlich, of Stanford University in California. “We want to build highways across the Serengeti to get more rare earth minerals for our cellphones. We grab all the fish from the sea, wreck the coral reefs and put carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. We have triggered a major extinction event. The question is: how do we stop it?”
Despite the scientific community becoming more vocal than ever before, many countries, prominent, influential countries, have leaders who deny there is any environmental problem at all. Trump declares concerns a hoax perpetrated by China, Turnbull changes his mind once Prime Minister and, believe it or not, there are worse waiting in the wings. I don’t understand David Archibald at all, nor am I going to try.
I interviewed One Nation candidate David Archibald in Port Hedland and he didn't hold back. https://t.co/kZsXwvWPeO
— Andrew Burrell (@AndrewBurrell7) February 25, 2017
I do understand people having different views, perspectives, beliefs, religions. What I struggle with is the vitriol of discourse, the hatred expressed. Nothing will be solved if the best the human race can do is hate the other side.
We have the unthinkable happening in the USA: press freedom under threat. Sure, some members of the media have not maintained the required degree of professionalism in recent years. The internet has made it difficult to determine the real from the unreal, a large proportion of the populace has become addicted to “reality TV shows” (that bear no resemblance to reality at all).
— Negar نگار (@NegarMortazavi) February 25, 2017
There is no escaping, however, the seriousness and historical learnings from silencing the press.
My father, who taught journalism, gave this to his students for nearly 50 years starting in the 1930's. More relevant than ever, Dad. pic.twitter.com/TU86qOL4en
— Robert J. Rosenthal (@rosey18) February 24, 2017
— Barbara Boxer (@BarbaraBoxer) February 25, 2017
2018: "Yeah, Trump's jailing reporters, but not executing them."
2019: "Yeah, Trump's executing them, but humanely."#FreedomOfThePress
— Donald J Orwell (@DonaldJOrwell) February 24, 2017
It isn’t just the press. As the people rise up in protest in the USA, those in power move to shut them down – in eighteen states. THE democracy that held itself up as THE political system all countries should follow, whether they wanted to or not, is trying to silence the people.
Protest in Arizona and lose your home and car and retirement account – https://t.co/dOvrrYGnRv GOP is totally going for it.
— Thom Hartmann (@Thom_Hartmann) February 24, 2017
Hillary Clinton called the Trump supporters “deplorables”. Not a sensible move. Trump spoke of “draining the swamp” (but refilled it with worse).
There is no doubt Trump lies. The evidence is overwhelming and easily found. In Australia we have our current Brandis issue: not the first and not the last.
The efforts to disenfranchise the general populace is astounding. Trump’s administration is busy winding back school lunches, health care and protections for the LGBT community. The Turnbull government just readjusted penalty rates, probably on the basis parents’ should be buying houses for their children rather than the children working Sundays to put fuel in the car to attend their classes to try to get that good job to be able to afford their own house before they are forty.
Right. Here's a long personal thread about how I'm living proof that you can't just "get a good job" and buy a house.
— Sally Rugg (@sallyrugg) February 26, 2017
But, you ask, where is the hate in all of that? Indifference might indeed be a better description of some of the actions taken, but that indifference leads to the have-nots hating the haves. The haves don’t listen, don’t learn, don’t comprehend and react with hatred.
During WWII we had the capacity to destroy ourselves. Surprisingly, we managed not to. Today we have even greater capacity to hate ourselves into oblivion. Whether than be by destroying our planet due to environmental mismanagement fueled by greed or firing nuclear and chemical weapons around the globe, we have more than enough capacity to annihilate ourselves.
The biggest threats are the “wannabe haves”. The ones that aren’t the billionaires but see politics as an avenue to power and prestige. Pauline Hanson – from fish and chip shop owner to a very nice high profile, well paying, powerful role. Both Hanson and Trump generate hate by attacking anyone who is not like them. Their followers take up arms, literally, in the belief they are faithfully following their leaders. What I do not understand is the inability of the followers to assess these dangerous leaders with critical thought processes. The blind adoration and acceptance is astounding. What have we become? Can we no longer think for ourselves? People like Trump and Hanson seize upon the lack of critical thought in the the population as an opportunity for them to rise to power, yet crush the very voters that put them there. Before we know it, we WILL be repeating history.
Even if we successfully manage not to blow ourselves up, we are at risk of stressing ourselves out of existence. Google “stress” with “health” and there are number of reputable articles.
Not having a lunch at school is stressful. Not being able to afford health care is stressful. Missing classes because the student is unable to afford to get to class or buy textbooks is stressful. Renting is stressful (refer Sally’s Tweets above). Being unemployed is stressful. Not having food to feed your children is stressful. Stress is cumulative and a massive health risk.
The human race must find a way to stop hating “the others” and work together for the benefit of all. Until that happens, every single one of us is at risk.
I am REALLY having difficulty accepting our political reality in Western countries right now. Such irresponsible, regressive people in power
— Robyn D (@KoparaFallsKid) February 24, 2017