Hate, the book: 086

Hello Curious Friend.  Welcome to my book about Hate.  The number tells you where you are in the sequence.  I look forward to your comments.

Part Three
Chapter Sixteen
Catch the Conscience   (Continued)

Stopping it sounds good. But like real stop signs, most people just roll through it.

Discerning intent within our source is vitally important.  In many cases where hate is present, this is not so difficult.  In fact, many sources can be quite open about their intentions.  But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t refine our own tools so that we can be absolutely sure of what someone intends when they exhibit harmful behaviors.  There is one other aspect to determining Sierra’s intent, and that is how long her desire to harm Tango may have lasted.

For instance, if Sierra had indeed wanted to harm Tango, but only for an instant, does that count as true intent?  Does that mean hate was present in her heart in that instant?
Perhaps one day it will be shown that harmful intent must be proven to exist in a person for at least a day, or a month, or even a year before we can consider it true hate.  In our story, it’s likely that Sierra’s thoughts of hurting Tango didn’t exist a moment before the fateful push, and it’s just as likely they didn’t exist a moment afterwards as well.

Does that mean hate wasn’t present just because it existed for only a moment?  Of course it was present.  The fact that we now have a way to measure it on even the smallest of time scales is a good sign.  We know that Tango is as yet incapable of hate, and we would like to think that Oscar is also incapable of hate as far as his children are concerned.

The optimist in all of us also likes to imagine that as mature adults, brother and sister will love each other as siblings.  Yet the truth is that hate comes and goes.

While this fact should be accepted and appreciated, the challenge you and I have is how to understand and confront the type of hate that comes, stays, and causes great harm throughout the world.

Okay, back to our play. Besides intent, actors and background, what else is either relevant, or should be ignored?

What about the setting?  Should it matter where our characters sit, in place or in time?

Absolutely not.  We’re looking for steadfast characteristics of hate that transcend mere details such as time or place.  Our observations should be the same whether our family is huddled around glowing embers in Medieval Europe during the plague, or playing on a sunny island beach centuries before Europeans arrived in their ships.

This family should be exactly the same as today’s family regardless of the time period.  It makes no difference what they were doing.  Whether they are watching large screen movies in the US, or fasting during Ramadan in the Middle East, it doesn’t matter.

Finally, looking back on our characters, it should not matter if the parent were a woman, and if the children were simply children.  None of them even needs to be related to any of the others.

To be continued …

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