The H-word

Never has one man been called so many names by so many people. Never before has any man deserved to be called so many names by so many people. Demagogue, bully, fascist, misogynist, lummox. Lummox?

I have called him quite a few myself. I think I’ve finally decided which one is the most fitting. But nevermind that.

Here’s what’s bothering me: Doesn’t it feel good to attach colorful epithets to someone we consider so malicious? Why is that? Why do we enjoy making it personal? The question I’m really asking is: Is it OK to attack hateful ideas or hurtful rhetoric with hurt and hate? Is it OK to hate hate?

That’s a moral question, or maybe psychological. I’m not sure I want to know the answer, even if there is one. I sort of hope it is OK, because I can’t help it. I do hate hate. But only hateful hate, not the unhateful hate that only hates hateful hate.

Maybe the best we can ask of ourselves is that we keep careful track of our emotions and our reasons. Why we do or say the things we do. And judge ourselves as we do the people we call names. It’s a work in progress. Kind of like democracy.


4 thoughts on “The H-word

  1. Pat Fuller

    Hey, Chuck. That’s wonderful. Let’s talk about it tomorrow. I know that hating hate feels good and righteous, but I know that negative emotions are not healthy. I know that when people can let go of hate, and forgive, they feel better. But I also know (and I think history will show) that having a hateful person in power will breed hate, and divisiveness, and all the things he wants it to breed. Psychopaths like to stir things up. I.personally am feeling all stirred up. And not in a good way.

    1. chuckredman Post author

      Yeah, exactly, Pat. That’s why it’s so confusing. He makes us doubt ourselves, because we have a conscience. It would be so much simpler to be a reactionary bigot: no self-reflection, no self-doubts.

  2. Beth Doshay

    Well stated, Pat & Chuck.
    Maybe that’s why it’s good (good is probably not the right word here), in a weird sort of way, to have a hater in power (maybe only very, very temporarily, though) to make us think and evaluate what we think and say and do and why we think and say and do what we think and say and do, because if we agreed with everything our leader thought and said and did, we wouldn’t be thinking about the why at all…


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