Well-meaning in both instances, I'm sure, but troubling, for this is truly how hatred spreads. When we hate the hatred, we're practicing hatred, and as a classical musician I know that what we practice, we get good at. This is why historically in-fighting is common in resistance movements, though I think this time around people are very aware that a new, more peaceful, more loving kind of resistance is called for. But it's very hard not to be angry, and being angry, it's always a challenge not to spill over to hate. It is a slippery slope and I'm standing atop it like the rest of you, trying not to roll down the hill.
Poking around for quotations about hatred, I came across this one from President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
"We must remember that any oppression, any injustice, any hatred, is a wedge designed to attack our civilization."
Any hatred, he said, not "their" hatred.
It was fascinating to discover that this quotation came from Roosevelt's address of greeting to the American Committee for Protection of Foreign-born in January of 1940. This was a time when almost a hundred "Anti-alien" bills were before congress.
Hemingway wrote to the magazine "The Nation" urging people to resist the movement against aliens.
"You must be aware that the existence of the war in Europe has intensified the efforts of demagogic Alien-baiters who seek to destroy our rights as Americans behind the subterfuge of attacking the so-called Alien."
Sadly, Roosevelt went on to sign Proclamation number 2537 on January 14th, 1942, which required people from enemy countries, (Germany, Italy, and Japan), to register with the Department of Justice. It was under this order that the internment order for Japanese Americans began.
Having read a fair bit about the Roosevelts, and watched the excellent documentary by Ken Burns, I am guessing this is one of the times when Roosevelt bowed to political pressures rather than that he truly believed in this kind of discrimination. I need to research that more to know for sure. But even if that's the case, that in a way is more chilling, showing how even a decent man can do something indecent if the momentum of hatred is strong enough.
Well, I'm loving you, my friends and readers, today. Even those who think I'm not angry enough, and those who think I'm too angry! Like musicians, let's see if we can't get into a groove here, and find the sweet spot of political action fueled by love.
Here's a link to Roosevelt's greeting in its entirety. Roosevelt's Speech.
Note, as a resource for this post, I referred to Peter Rose's book, "The Dispossessed: An Anatomy of Exile."