Thursday, December 12, 2013

Refuse to hate.

This is going to be one of my thought posts. I've always been a bit of a crusader and I guess that's not getting better with age. I'm worried about social attitudes towards poverty. There has always been the idea that welfare creates free-loaders or whatever and I'm not saying that's not true. I'm more concerned with the recent government attacks on social assistance, as well as the increasing attitude of hostility towards those of lower economic status. All of sudden, Welfare, Disability cheques, Unions, Taxes, Social Assistance, Immigration, and even the Salvation Army, are under attack. Again, these institutions have always been grumbled about, usually by people who really have no idea what they are talking about, but lately, everywhere you go, the government is slashing funding, the media takes stabs at, and people in general criticize the very establishments that society relies on for relief. If it was just the government, I wouldn't even be worried. Governments always try to save money. It's what they do. In fact, they generalize try to appease big business and ignore everyone else. I'm worried because the negative attitudes towards the poor, and in fact, towards everyone, seem to have increased as the recession continues to rob more people of jobs and money. The financial status of our country is bleak, so instead of rallying together to hold the government accountable, or even to pray, we turn on each other and poke holes in each other's values. I'm also worried because these were the very institutions under attack before World War II. We like to think we've come so far in terms of Liberalism or Humanitarianism, etc., but we're positioning ourselves within the same hate that turned the world into a battlefield. I am not a conspiracy theorist suggesting a new Hitler is about to rise or that we are spontaneously going to start another Holocaust, this time against Muslims or Christians or Immigrants or the Salvation Army. I am saying that hate sneaks in unnoticed. It seems justifiable. At one point it was easy to say "hate the Jews because they have all the money", or "Africans deserve to be slaves because they aren't like us", and slowly that hate becomes an institution in itself. Now, we are saying "grumble about people on welfare because they're abusing the system" or "grumble about immigrants because they are taking our jobs or are abusing the system" or "don't support the Salvation Army because someone in the Salvation Army once said something that seems awful (at least the media says what they said was awful,. maybe it was out of context)". The point is DON'T HATE. Just don't do it. Refuse to do it. Hate leads to hate. Revenge leads to revenge. This doesn't mean we shouldn't hold each other accountable. I'm saying we should be concerned when the underlying social attitudes become hateful rather than supportive in their nature. The poor in society are not the problem. Cutting social assistance isn't going to help things. Not giving your pocket change to the Salvation Army isn't going to hurt anyone but the poor. So many of our current media protests hurt those already in need. Doesn't that seem strange to anyone?

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