What Creates Hate?

My country is in shock. Many of us even experience some of the physiological effects: dizziness, confusion, nausea. But our shock is the number of xenophobic, racist, ignorant people that have crawled out of the woodwork to support a super-narcissistic member of their own.

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Mother and child in Vanuatu.

I am truly shocked at the number of this vitriolic group. Frankly, I had no idea. So where does this hatred come from?

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Cuban Dance troupe.

Hatred of this type is a result of anger, which is a result of fear. OK, so where does the fear come from? I imagine it comes from a variety of sources, but is focused and controlled by rhetoric that in and of itself makes no sense. Rather it uses the emotion of fear to create hate. A classic vicious circle. And make no mistake, it is vicious.

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Cambodian students.

This type of hatred of the Other uses false stereotypes; uncontested “facts,” that are in fact not true; and the use of media to repeat the hate message and with redundancy make it “real. It provides a “community” of like-minded people, which helps reinforce one’s sense of belonging and self-worth. There are many other tools, I am sure.

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Yemen street scene.

Here’s a link to a website that describes the stages of hate group development. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/let-their-words-do-the-talking/201103/the-seven-stage-hate-model-the-psychopathology-hate

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Cook Island students.

Here is a link to a website that has an action plan for stopping prejudice and its corollary, hate. http://archive.adl.org/prejudice/print.html

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Me with two young women weavers in Turkey.

Only with knowledge and analytical understanding can such detrimental forces be addressed. Although I am not sure I will ever understand the extent of hatred of the Other that exists, not only here, but around the world. To me it is illogical, counter-productive, and unhealthy for both the individual and the society.


We’re all sailors from various countries having a get-together in Australia.

I am grateful for all the people in these few photos who represent some of the diversity of this world.

The raison d’être of my book, Voice of a Voyage, is to take you, the reader, on a journey that inspires you to be open to the larger world, fosters a sense of stewardship for both this earth, our shared home, and the diversity of cultures that so enrich the human aspects of life.

It is the antithesis of hate.


4 comments on “What Creates Hate?

  1. Read E. O. Wilson’s THE MEANING OF HUMAN EXISTANCE. It will give you some insight into the deep rooted fear of “the other”. It’s a fairly short book, but one of his best as far as I’m concerned. Are you familiar with him? If you would like to borrow it, let me know. You are welcome to take it for a while.

  2. Hate emanating from a dominant, majoritarian community seems to me to be quite different than the hate and anger of an oppressed, marginalized minority. What feeds majoritarian hate has to be looked at more carefully and see how privilege is globally structured economically and politically; what are the majoritarian ideologies of patronizing “acceptance” of otherness that than naturalize difference and “them” never being quite like “us”; as well as the ways in which we imagine our national selves and the whole myth of American exceptionalism that constructs a place of privilege over others.

    In short, it is not just psychology, but rather something deeply embedded in who we are as a nation and our ideologies of political and economic domination of the globe. Yes, hatred is erupting around the globe, in India one sees a similar process of majoritarian bigotry being unleashed, but again, one has to place it in how our ideas of exceptionalism and liberal privilege are internalized by others…

    • Chad, when you use the term “majoritarian community,” are you meaning these people are a majority or just that they are a large group, not just a disenfranchised minority? I think some of these people are feeling marginalized; they don’t seem to all come from privilege, except as that is nationalized. It does seem as if fear is part of the reason for the reaction. I see what you mean about the myth of American exceptionalism that leads to views of others.

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