When Activism Turns to Hate

I’m beginning to notice that it’s very normal for former fundamentalists to become loud-mouthed, opinionated activists. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, or activists for that matter. In many ways, activism is a natural progression for those of us who have been repressed and oppressed. Liberalism does represent hope, equality and fairness for all, and that’s why we’re drawn to it. In other ways, though, it’s easy to lose sight of yourself and of other people’s feelings when you become an activist. Liberalism can be as vitriolic, blind, and one-sided as the Tea Party. And liberalism is not ever 100% right or unbiased.

I know this is a contentious subject and this is the internet, so there will be hate-filled emails filling up my inbox soon. Because I don’t have time to enter into debate with so many haters, I won’t be allowing comments on this post. I also don’t give a fuck if you don’t like that. I don’t have time to have a heated debate on here. I simply am not interested in a battle, because if you want to have a battle of intellect, that’s one thing, but a battle of hatred, I can’t and won’t participate in.

It’s important for me to write this, though, because I was such an outspoken activist for so long. Although not all activism is bad, sometimes when we’re activists we’re less concerned about how many people and friendships we plow down in the way to our goal. We are driven, idealistic, and we feel we need to “save the world.” This isn’t unlike my days as a “soldier for Christ” in a cult. The passion-fueled idealism is actually quite the same. The blind zest to change the world and change other people’s views (as opposed to accepting them) isn’t far removed from fundamentalism. So, I guess, the questions I’m interested in putting out there is: At what point do we examine our activist ways and compare them to our fundamentalist ways? Are they the same in some ways? In what ways are they different? Will we wake up one day to realize that being a moderate doesn’t mean being the enemy? That maybe the world is less black and white than we think? And maybe being able to look at subjects with fairness (and from both sides) might actually help improve the world, the media, journalism, and debate more so than zealous activism? Maybe normal isn’t the enemy–maybe it’s a remnant of what we were taught as fundamentalists. 

Over time, I have damaged a lot of people I love because I was close-minded. I damaged friendships–some of them are irreparable and some of them meant a lot to me. I need to say sorry to those I hurt and also say that I’m more self-aware now. I’m more open to meaningful dialogue with people I care about and I’m more open to meaningful dialogue with most people now, because no one is ever above learning from someone else’s humanity. I’m interested in hearing another side of the argument. I’m interested in debate, only as long as it doesn’t damage my friendships with people I deeply care about.

Essentially, I prefer people over politics. I don’t want to live a life where I assume I’m 100% right about everything and the “Other” side is made up of idiots. That’s just not true. (It is true that there are a LOT of stupid people in the world, but they exist on both sides.) And I certainly don’t want to continue to make the world a vitriolic-filled place where only one side of the conversation is respected and others are bullied into silence. That’s not democratic. It’s also dehumanizing. All of our voices should be heard, and I hope we all aim for constructive dialogue and debate. I hope we all open our minds to people who are different from us–whether liberal or conservative–and really work on bringing more thoughtfulness and less hate to the table.

/end rant

Comments from Hell

Today I got a comment from someone that essentially acted like a press release for his book, “Boycott American Women.” My first thought was LOL, this must be a joke, right?

This “book” appears to be insane and is reason #99 why people don’t respect self-publishing, because any Tom, Dick or John can publish a “book.”

All I can say is wowsa! I don’t believe in Internet censorship, but I wish they’d censor the hell out of these kind of people:
I am an American man, and I have decided to boycott American women. In a nutshell, American women are the most likely to cheat on you, to divorce you, to get fat, to steal half of your money in the divorce courts, don’t know how to cook or clean, don’t want to have children, etc. Therefore, what intelligent man would want to get involved with American women?

American women are generally immature, selfish, extremely arrogant and self-centered, mentally unstable, irresponsible, and highly unchaste. The behavior of most American women is utterly disgusting, to say the least.

This is my attempt to explain why I feel American women are inferior to foreign women (non-American women), and why American men should boycott American women, and date/marry only foreign (non-American) women.

Tens of millions of American men have had their lives completely destroyed by American women through the following crimes:

1. False rape accusations (it has been proven that up to 80 percent of rape accusations are FALSE)

2. False DV charges (same as above)

3. Financial RAPE of men in divorce courts

4. Emotional destruction of men by ex-wives who have stolen their children from them and forbidden contact

5. Divorced dads who commit suicide as a result

Not one single American woman has EVER condemned their fellow American women for committing these crimes against men. Silence means consent. Therefore, American women support and enjoy destroying men’s lives and causing men to commit suicide. Therefore, is it any surprise that a huge percent of American men no longer want anything to do with American women, other than using them for easy sex and then throwing them away?

Over 50 percent of American women are single, without a boyfriend or husband; so the fact is most American men no longer want to marry American women. Let these worthless American women grow old living alone with their 10 cats.

BOYCOTT AMERICAN WOMEN!

Never Be Silent; Don’t Forget

And that is why I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim.

Someone asked me today why I was writing this blog. I’ve been asked over the years why I want to write about my experiences. As I read the Epilogue to Elie Wiesel’s book, Night, I can only share with you his words. If they resonate with you, then you understand why I write this blog.

…If we forget, we are guilty, we are accomplices.

And then I explain to him how naive we were, that the world did know and remained silent.

And that is why I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim.

Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere. When human lives are endangered, when human dignity is in jeopardy, national borders and sensitivities become irrelevant. Wherever men and women are persecuted because of their race, religion, or political views, that place must–at that moment–become the center of the universe.

What all these victims need above all is to know that they are not alone; that we are not forgetting them, that when their voices are stifled we shall lend them ours, that while their freedom depends on ours, the quality of our freedom depends on theirs.”

Taken from The Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech Delivered by Elie Wiesel in Oslo on December 10, 1986. For the entire speech, please click here: http://www.eliewieselfoundation.org/nobelprizespeech.aspx