There is so much hate in the world today. Liberals hate Trump. Conservatives hate progressive ideas. The poor hate the rich. Star Wars fans hate almost everything.
Such hate creates dangerous environments that, when taken to their extremes, lead to violence, oppression, even genocide. It also leads to ineffectual movements like cancel culture — where everything and anybody we hate gets canceled or fired.
Cancel culture won’t last. If we eradicated everything that everyone hated, we’d have nothing and no one left.
Hate isn’t going anywhere
Whether you believe it’s mythological or historical, Cain is widely regarded as the first murderer. Ever since he smashed his brother’s skull with a rock, we have known hate and held disregard for segments of our experience — which includes other people — in our hearts.
Sin or character flaw? It doesn’t matter, and it isn’t going anywhere.
In fact, the longer that cancel culture or identity politics persists, the more hate we will have.
What should we do with our hate?
In times past, people accepted that their neighbor may not like them. There is evil in the world, and as soon as we stomp one portion of it out, more will rise.
How do we handle it? By not pretending that it will go away. Learn to live with the fact that some people won’t like you, that there will be portions of your fandom that you dislike, and that some people will have more advantages than you.
If you accept that hate exists, even within your own heart, you’ll begin to let go of its grip on you. It exists, like dirt, air, and water. But so does love and compassion. As you accept hate and let go of the need to stomp it out — because someone hates you too, whether you accept that or not, and you don’t want to be stomped out — you’ll be free to focus on things you love.
Two things can be true at once
Star Wars can have Luke Skywalker and diversity, The Mandalorian and The High Republic.
Masculinity and femininity. Straight and gay. Black and white. Church and science. Liberal and conservative.
Yin and yang.
Trying to replace something with the thing you prefer will lead to extremes that are not meant to exist — whether you take that spiritually or historically is up to you. You can’t believe in inclusion while embracing the concept of cancel culture — the concept of cancelling cancels the concept of inclusion.
Peace and goodwill are found in the midst of hatred, not in the absence of it. If darkness didn’t exist, we would not recognize the light.
Rather than trying to flex the privilege of our social media-enhanced voices to cancel things we don’t like, and thereby opening the doors for things we love to be canceled by others, we should be seeking the good things of the world.
Search for love and you’ll find love. Look for lists of things to cancel, and you’ll eventually find your own name on such a list.
The world is better when we focus on the good, despite the bad.