Struggling with the Hate

Hey Tim,

We’ve been struggling to write since the Orlanda massacre.

We’re still struggling.

We thought by now we’d have some brilliant thought or moving passage that would change the world in some small way.

We started and stopped and edited and restarted.

And then we’d turn on the news and someone would be bashing someone else. CNN would be spewing their rigamarole. Fox theirs. Trump his and Obama his. Hillary’s jumping in of course. Paul Ryan too.

But it’s about power.

The hate crime was. The institutionalized hate in the Red Countries is. The political spew in our country is.

We hate it all.

Sadly, emotions are contagious.

Hate just happens to be one of those.

We’re haters now.

And we hate that about ourselves.

So we’re at a loss as to what to say to you, Mr. Cook, to our friends, to our acquaintances, even to strangers.

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What do we say to our Muslim acquaintances, some of whom we like dearly and miss, but who come from countries and who follow leaders that live and breathe the control and suppression of social liberty? What do I say when they tell me, Did you not hear your president? Terrorists are the thugs, ours is a peaceful religion? What’s my reply as I stare at the map of institutionalized prejudice?

What do we say to our Texan friends who live out in the scrub, 30 miles or more from the nearest sheriff? Guns are deep in their heritage and enable them to find food and protect themselves. What do we say when they point to the terrorist attacks here and in France as reinforcement that they need to protect themselves? What do we say as we stare at the fully automatic killing machine on their shelf?

And what do we tell our gay friends? They’re targeted by more groups than we can count. As I look at the pictures of the bodies, what do we say? Do we say, We’re sorry? That doesn’t seem to cut it. Or how about, Terrorists suck? Or maybe, Man, I have no bloody clue what you’re feeling right now. And when he says, You’re right; you have not clue. Do I just shut up?

He’s probably right, because everything we come up with sounds stupid.

And if it isn’t stupid, it’s hateful.

And now we’re in what we consider to be the Hated Middle, sadly filled with hate for the haters around us.

It’a a bummer.

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We’d rather surf, or unicycle. Or somehow divert from the pain of the immediate subject.

We’d rather do just about anything other than feel hate.

We can’t really help it. We feel that they–pretty much everyone spouting a political belief–are all liars and cheats and self-serving manipulators. This moment of crisis has furthered that sentiment.

What we do believe, to the point of knowing, is that if the left and the right in our country can’t learn to see each other’s viewpoints better than they do now, we’re screwed. Both sides want to move us further to totalitarianism.

Sorry to lay this on you. We aren’t looking to you to answer our questions. The answers, in whatever form, will come from no one but ourselves.

If there is one thing you can take away, however, it’s that we’re thinking about all the crap and the victims and the haters and we’re trying to learn something.

How successful we’ll be, and how well we put what we learn into practice, we don’t know.

But we have faith.

Now on to the missing Street View.