THE HATE EXCHANGE …

hate-horizontal

We played cowboys and indians …a lot. Admittedly, I liked both costumes. When you’re 5 or 6, that cool, indian head dress is very exotic looking and the tomahawk that comes with it feels good to wield. I dug it.

But when the fantasy turns to riding into the west without provisions, you need the imaginary saddle bags and six shooter. You need boots and a hat for protection. After all, you never know when you’re going to run into bandits or train robbers. So, I identified as the cowboy more often than not. And I cheered for them in the movies fed to me by Hollywood. The Dallas Cowboys even became my favorite football team. And I loved watching them beat those pesky Redskins.

But then something interesting happened. When I was 10, I became best friends with a guy who was dark skinned, with high check bones. We were thick as thieves (no offense to thieves) …instant buddies. In fact, we’re buddies to this very day.

But our cowboy and indian conversations took a turn. He was full blooded native American, from the Lumbe tribe. Suddenly, my view of “indians” changed. This was my good friend. And learning what the “cowboys” of the past had done to his ancestors made me not want to be the cowboy anymore. In fact, it kind of made me embarrassed to think I had a one time aspired to that.

I started rooting for the indians in those movies. I started to understand where they were coming from and why they were fighting the cowboys in the first place. I exchanged my love and hate.

Then, later on, in another interesting turn …I moved to South Dakota. And I lived among REAL cowboys for a few years. And I found that they weren’t indiscriminately killing indians anywhere, at all. They were working ranches and farms and providing food for most of the world. They were the toughest and most kind hearted people I’d ever met. And they were nothing like the cowboys I envisioned, abusing my best friend’s ancestors. They were providing milk and bread and steak and corn and chicken and a whole host of things for me and pretty much everyone on earth. Some of those guys are still friends to this day.

I again, had to re-align my hate and love.

If you study enough history, you’ll move in and out of love and hatred for people. Some of my best friends are Italian. And yet I’m not a big fan of the ancient Romans. But guess what? Nobody lives in ancient Rome anymore.

I’m a fan of the men who died at the Alamo. But my wife is Mexican. Our Alamo perspective is multi-dimensional. But I love her. And I love freedom. And I love America. And the politics of the Alamo was complicated and fully embroiled in early 19th century points of view.

You can go insane re-aligning love and hate for all involved.

Over the last 24 hours I have been excoriated for being a white male. I can’t help how I was born. I didn’t choose my skin or gender. And yet, the hate and vitriol I feel coming toward me is palpable. I have a couple of choices: I can lash back or I can choose to show grace to those insulting me. I obviously represent something negative to them. They are obviously in pain. So, I’m giving them some space.

But keep this in mind …exchanging the hatred of one race or gender for the hatred of another race or gender …isn’t tolerance or acceptance. And it’s definitely not love. It’s simply redirection. And you may think you are morally superior to those you deem hateful by hating THEM back, instead of hating (insert minority of your choice here) But the truth is you have simply gone to the hate exchange and traded the hatred of one entity or group …for another. You’re no closer to love than they are.

If we are really interested in love …I mean really …then Trump supporters have GOT to reach out in love to Hillary supporters. And if Hillary supporters were actually about acceptance in this election, they have to show it …to someone who was not lovable to them. Or it wasn’t about acceptance at all. It was just a transaction at the hate exchange.

Our president elect has a problem with this. A BIG one. It’s one of the reasons a lot of people like him. It’s also why SO many people hate him and are frightened of him. I DON’T like that about him …at all. I’m hoping this part of his personality tempers with time in public service. I’m allowing room for it.

Loving nice people you agree with is easy. But it’s not actually love. It’s like loving a puppy. Loving someone you really want to hate is difficult. But it’s the difference in changing your object …and changing the world.

So, I’ve decided not to go to the hate exchange anymore and cash in my anger toward someone I deem more deserving.

The interest payments are simply too high.

 

R

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35 thoughts on “THE HATE EXCHANGE …

  1. Reblogged this on Ann's Corner and commented:
    “Loving someone you really want to hate is difficult. But it’s the difference in changing your object …and changing the world.”

    I’m thankful for this perspective amongst all the hate mongering of the pre and post election period…..

    Let’s change the world!

    Ann ❤

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Thank you. Please keep the thoughtful dialog growing and developing.
    Shalom- to you and ALL.
    -Kurt

    Shalom = completeness, wholeness, health, peace, welfare, safety, soundness, tranquility, prosperity, perfectness, fullness, rest, harmony, the absence of agitation or discord.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Dear Regie,

    I normally can’t make it through a lot of posts due the overwhelming urge I feel to stab myself in the eyes about half-way through… however, I LOVE the way you write! I love the way that you bring us along to the reasonable conclusion and force us to be thoughtful about the topic at hand.

    Today, I found myself disgusted with and overwhelmed by all of the social media rants and raves from both sides. This post and the former have me breathing a little more calmly now.

    Please continue to write and I will continue to read.

    Sincerely,

    Angela

    Happy Veteran’s Day to our current and former Veterans! Thank you all for your service!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. So very well said and you have a new follower! I view Trump’s campaign as a good solid look at his and our collective shadows selves. I believe he has a potential (as we all do) to become his highest enlightened self and to use his gifts of: Discernment, Humanitarian, Impeccability, Transparency, Preservation, Light, and Peace through Diplomacy for the good of mankind. I am holding a picture for the best possible outcome instead of magnifying fear and hatred.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I agree with your writing – but just as your Cowboy & Indians perspective changed when you befriended a Native American – this story is written from a white male viewpoint. People of a different color, gender and religion have a different story to tell regarding the fear they feel at this time. My tiny 7 yr old biracial grandson was pushed down and kicked in the stomach and face, the day after the election because his classmate felt empowered to be a white male. It’s heartbreaking to explain why someone would hurt him because of the color of his skin.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. We should definitely all come together and try to find understanding and peace. But lets not rush to normalize Trump. He’s not the normal. He emboldened racists and bigots and anti-semites and fanned the flames of rage and resentment. We don’t have to hate him back but we shouldn’t ‘put it behind us’ either. Let him normalize himself. Let his voters demand this of him if they truly care about a diverse society. He has a yuge task to prove he’s not the same thing his campaign was and reach out to the >50% of the country that rejected him. All our lives hang in the balance.

    -JRM

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’m truly loving your blogs and your analogies are spot on. BTW, my brother-in-law is also a full-blooded Lumbee indian from Lumberton, NC. With regards to the election and anything else we win or lose, we all have learn to offer grace in order to receive it. My only reservation with what you had to say is that I am a born and bred Redskin fan and the Cowboys are currently enjoying a big lead in the NFC East. Guess I’ll have to practice what I just preached…Keep up the awesome blogs. Can’t wait to read more.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Excellent perspective. I just shared your blog entry on my Facebook wall, and received this in response:

    “There were many Democrats that did NOT vote for Hillary and did not vote for Trump! They too, like Hillary supporters were fearful of Trump. So Hillary losing was NOT what protests are all about! Trump’s campaign was all about hate, wanting to put up a wall for ALL Mexicans!!!! Wanting to deport illegal immigrants who are working hard, pay taxes, more taxes I am sure than DT has, and many have had children, but are not yet citizens. These people should be encouraged to obtain citizenship instead of judging them and kicking them out! Trump has enforced the false belief that ALL minorities and ALL illegal aliens are bad. Same with Muslims, as in the false belief that ALL Muslims are bad. This was ALL part of his campaign and he brought the racists/bigots out cheering him on. Many racists and bigots were thrilled that this behavior will now be accepted! Hate and false judgements were his motto All during his campaign!!!
    This is what we are mourning for, fearful for mostly, and is what has started the protesting! The fear of what a hateful, discriminatory America we are going to be! We should ALL be treated Equal, which is what America used to be about!!!
    What racists/ bigots don’t realize is, IF Trump is true to his word, White Women will suffer too, as in no equal pay for equal work, not just minorities. It “May” turn into a racist White man’s America. So All what Women worked for will be lost, whether one agrees with some of the achievements or not!
    So until our fears are NOT founded, acceptance of his Presidency will NOT happen and the division will continue. This is the sad reality of it all.”

    Huh?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Firstly, Reggie, I really enjoy your writing, it’s timely, logical and well organized. You have a new daily reader here.
      Kevin, I have a question for you to ponder…if the “illegal aliens” that Trump is so wrongly upset about, are paying so much tax from their earnings..can you answer how they are doing so without a valid SSAN..if they are using someone else’s that they bought on the way over, that would constitute a second (and may I add here, much more serious) crime. If they are using a temporary tax ID they are in one respect or another legal and therefore NOT the subject of President-Elect Trump’s statement.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. Outstanding. Its the way I felt but couldn’t verbalize….in so many (you did it with just the right amount) words. I do believe that the “Trump” thing is meant to be? Sort of…? I mean I already see a large amount of peeps (me one of them) whom couldn’t vote for Donald and at the same time was not motivated to vote for Hilary, none the less……my nature is not relentless anger “hate” can’t imagine hating a group of people I don’t even know. I do have opinions and am well traveled (was a flight attendant for many years) I was born and raised in a small town in So. Minnesota, big Catholic family and parents who didn’t drink, (well maybe an egg nog at Christmas) I never saw them “fight” but was aware when they had disagreements, we were not always privy to the details….as I got older I learned and recognized the differences of my parents. A biggy was my Dad was completely organized and neat (an architect) my Mom was MESSY! Housework was not her forte’ and having 7 children that posed a bit of chaos amongst us kids. Like finding matching clean socks. Thank God we were uniforms, otherwise I don’t know how much more ;late for school, church and everything else we could have been but we still were. Well, this blog got my going and I usually am not a 1 or 2 sentence responder. I do love to read and partake in comments; especially interesting and well written blogs. You got a thumbs up right here! When I can’t seem to find words…..I run to music! Staying for days, weeks ……I got so bad that my teenage son would say Mom, take the earplugs out for a minute! (truth is I was usually singing along with who ever I was listening to and it was like scratching my nails on a chalkboard to him. YIKES I have a decent singing voice (honest) and I was respectful in public. But anyhoo whatever I was talking about all fits in, to me anyway. Looking forward to read some more Regie blogs. Thanks. Hmmmm I’m trying to remember how I or what led me to your site? I think it was from one of my PH sites (Pulmonary Hypertension) now that’s another story!

    Like

  10. P.S. It is not 3:37 am ???? That’s what my above post says(?) I’m in SoCal PDT and it is 7:39 pm. Kind of funny though, to me because it would not necessarily be out of character for me to be reading and writing in the wee hours. I am a lifetime night owl, my career path reflected my predisposed disposition. I most often chose trips that left late in the day…some layovers were o’dark early departures while en route and on the road (ya know what I mean) whatever, I adjusted my clock to schedule and so no problem with owls while in per diem out there…up in the air. Easy street while flying my trips….at a hotel, whatever I needed fit in a suit case on wheels, didn’t have to worry about traffic or parking or forgetting to get gas, no chores/ dishes before checking in for the days flight path. No standing in closet undecided over what to wear etc… I’m on time for things, but if I can choose…you know my doc appts are all afternoons. Heha! See what I mean???I rambled on from noticing a time stamp, but this is what keeps me sane…even though anyone reading this (possibly no one) might think I have too much time on my hands and so on. Which brings this final comment (for real) that rights to opinions are fine….discovering where you feel most comfortable is a journey and if anyone has a problem with that….well blah blah blah blah blah! (smiling)Oh wait…..I just realized that in my original post I was saying how I was born and raised in a small Midwest (frozen mid north actually) which was all fine and dandy, however right after hig school I moved west…right into Los Angeles CA. fell in love immediately! From small town to big city I fit in and aware that I could belong anywhere, I have, I do and I will. Over and out…ch!

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  11. Seriously Dude! Get out of my head! You are inspiring me to get back into writing. Thanks for that. Or…maybe I’ll just let you do the writing, seems like you know exactly what I want to say. Bravo, so glad I signed up for your blog.

    Like

  12. This is a very profound and inspiring blog. I appreciate that you shared this with all of us. You hit the nose on the button. There is so much hate out there. It seems our country has gotten worse instead of better. It is my hope that the hatred and violence that is spreading through our country will cease before it is too late.
    Again, thank you Regie for speaking out and sharing your story. God bless.

    Like

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