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Do Americans hate each other?

dDave

Well-Known Member
V.I.P.
I know a lot of people here don't like Glenn Beck in the least but here's one for you that you may not have heard about.

YouTube - ‪Glenn Beck Gets Harassed in NY City Park‬‏

Glenn Beck Harassed in Bryant Park | Long Island Press

Hopefully that sums it up enough for you, I know it did for me.

So basically everyone was intentionally hating and harassing Beck and his family including but not limited to repeatedly stated insulting comments, intentionally spilling alcohol on his wife and yelling "We hate conservatives".

And if that's not enough to make you mad yet just look at what the people behind him had to say about it. They lied about it and then they got caught.

I don't care who you are this kind of behavior is disgusting and wrong. It doesn't matter if you disagree with somebody's views, all the man was trying to do was watch a movie at the park, it would be something else if he was talking policies and politics with people.

I know that a lot of people like to say that Beck creates a lot of drama, lots of people go so far as the say that he is a "hate mongerer" I still don't see it. It seems to me that the hate mongering (in this particular situation) was all coming from the leftists. I think that people on both left and right sides are starting to create an atmosphere of hate, I fear for the future of this country. Nobody will listen to anybody else because everyone thinks that they are 100% right.

Why all the hate? I understand that we disagree but it's unacceptable to demonize the other side, it's making us less than human. I've seen it happen on a very small scale here at GF, I see it in real life more and more often, then you have these people that do despicable things such as what happened at Bryant Park a few nights ago.

The Beck at the park example is just one of many many examples that you could point to, I chose this one because I watched him talk about it and it's quite recent.
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Here is the point I am trying to make plain and simple. Americans are being trained to hate eachother.

Discuss.

(Please try and keep this thread from hating on Beck and discussing this specific situation if you are going to mention Beck)
 
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Unity

Living in Ikoria
Staff member
I think that the way the people reacted was low and not classy at all...as one of those people that doesn't like Glenn Beck at all, if I saw him in the street I'd mind my own business and let him go about his day.

To address the questions listed, I don't think that Americans are "being trained" to hate each other...I think that some people let the influence of heated debate, television/radio personalities, etc. get to them all too easily. But I have confidence that just because the more hateful people (when it comes to political dialogue) are the minority even though they're the loudest.

Unlike you, Dave, I actually don't witness it out in the real world that often, which is encouraging. Part of it probably comes with phenomena like anonymity on the internet. In the case of what happened with Beck it's probably people who don't have manners feeding off of each other in a sociological kind of way.

I think that one big factor in this increase in overblown reactions, hatefulness in debate, etc. is partially because of the constant access to 24-hour news, internet, etc. Some people aren't able to just "turn it off," and instead just keep feeding themselves with more and more politics when they're frustrated/angry.

Another part of it is just the current climate of the U.S. For the last 10-11 years, there have been wars, heated political contests, economic problems, etc. I think that when things are stressful in life and people are disagreeing about solutions, it's going to be more heated than it would be in times of, for example, economic prosperity. Things were heated during the Vietnam Era as well, I think, but the whole constant media piece that I mentioned kind of amplifies things, makes it harder to avoid hateful speech, etc.

And even though it's often about truly important issues, I think some people just need to grow up. Thinking before you speak/act, and seeing sides to people other than their political affiliations, are big. So is listening. There are some basic "manners" types of issues that come into play in my opinion, as strange as that sounds.

Finally, a huge problem kind of ties many of my above points together. Because people can be really selective about how they get information (let's say on the internet), many choose to just read from sources with which they agree. People kind of isolate themselves from material and people that contradict what they think about. People don't want to challenge themselves, and that turns things into "us vs. them" instead of "we" much, much easier. It sounds crazy to some, these days...but the opposing viewpoints in politics are to be respected. There are good ideas on both sides, and disagreeing with an idea doesn't mean that you have to disrespect that idea or the person presenting it.

Just my initial thoughts...Dave - if I didn't accurately address your phrase of "being trained," let me know. I assumed that what you meant touched more on what people are hearing from what they read/listen to/watch.
 

Merc

Problematic Shitlord
V.I.P.
I really don't like Beck, but I wouldn't harass the man in public, that's just low. However, I think people like Beck only contribute to what is a true American problem and that's how divided we are. And before those ornery conservatives or right leaning folk among us get frustrated at my use of "people like Beck" let me clarify that I mean those who demonize one side or the other, people who likes to sensationalize and paint people they dislike as monsters, demons, secret Muslims, etc and not a political party.
 

dDave

Well-Known Member
V.I.P.
Just my initial thoughts...Dave - if I didn't accurately address your phrase of "being trained," let me know. I assumed that what you meant touched more on what people are hearing from what they read/listen to/watch.
Yeah that's what I meant when I said that. Of course nobody is giving direct training to just hate other people, wouldn't that make a crazy news story when that came to light? :lol:

Maybe saying "conditioned to hate" would have been a better way to put it. Let me explain...

I feel as if the media in general (and some politicians) are really influencing Americans in a way that makes a lot of people dislike each other (if hate is the wrong word to use there), when the policies of one side or the other are demonized by the other I think that's a lot worse than simply disagreeing strongly.
 
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Unity

Living in Ikoria
Staff member
Yeah that's what I meant when I said that. Of course nobody is giving direct training to just hate other people, wouldn't that make a crazy news story when that came to light? :lol:

Maybe saying "conditioned to hate" would have been a better way to put it. Let me explain...

I feel as if the media in general (and some politicians) are really influencing Americans in a way that makes a lot of people dislike each other (if hate is the wrong word to use there), when the policies of one side or the other are demonized by the other I think that's a lot worse than simply disagreeing strongly.

Yeah, I think you're right about the media and about certain politicians, and Merc is right about the "pundit" type of personalities that are out there. People have a right to get angry/passionate about politics, it comes with important issues, but these people fan those flames over and over and try to create anger...it gets them ratings, and some people just seem to enjoy that unfortunately. Everyone has a right to say what they want, but I think responsibility should be given more emphasis in anything that's trying to resemble "news" in any way.
 

shelgarr

Registered Member
With Beck getting so much bad press, I think people in the street would feel supported in their decision to bully him. If they had just their individual personal dislike toward him, I'm thinking they wouldn't have the guts to do it on their own. So in that way, I agree, the media was instrumental.

What I find so sad, is that people are being hated for merely speaking what they believe in. Other than that he has no impact on the lives of others. And yes, I see that happens here. Actually it happens at all forums. But I can say with 99% confidence; person-A would not be nasty if they didn't have alliances with person-B, person-C and so forth. It's all a group mentality that you see with gangs and other type peer pressure and bullying.

Are we being conditioned to hate? Partly no. The human species has an instinct for power and strives for it. Power often looks like hate. Starts with the toddler hitting a newly arrived baby, to playground politics, to queen bee activity, to husband/wife discord, to an elderly not wanting to give up independence.
 

Swiftstrike

Registered Member
Not in the least. Those individuals are the anomaly not the norm. They are the 5% tails of a bell curve. They are just being pricks there are assholes everywhere.

Conditioned to hate? Hate seems really strong.

I don't see American's assassinating public officials very often because of their political views or policies. I don't see children being conditioned and recruited to participate in rebellion groups. There isn't a coup or new military junta every few years. Citizen's aren't having violent protests or attacking other citizen groups. Last time I checked American interest groups weren't regularly suicide bombing different groups to push a political agenda.

Hate? Most of today's Americans don't know what hate is and we certainly aren't being conditioned to hate. America has a racist past but it has subsided significantly in recent decades. Compared to other states the American political system is stable, peaceful, and reliable. Citizen's mostly engage in peaceful protests and maybe the dichotomy seems more vocal now because we don't have a common enemy but I don't see much tail-spinning to hatred.

American politics is pretty laughable comparatively.
 

MenInTights

not a plastic bag
I say we are being conditioned to blame the other side which many times, particularly in a mob situation leads to hating each other. I made a post about a month ago about this that bombed, but let me try again to prove my point.

When a Republican pays $4/gallon gas who does he blame?
A. Democrats because Democrats refuse to expand domestic drilling which will lower gas prices.
GOP oil drilling bill fails to pass Senate - UPI.com
When a Democrat pays $4/gallon gas who does he blame?
A. Republicans because Republicans refuse to close the tax break loopholes for big oil companies.
Senate keeps oil industry tax breaks - UPI.com

Here's the interesting thing though. Both of those news items above happened in the same week and in both cases big oil won. Obviously the tax loophole was a victory and the drilling ban was a victory also for big oil. I saw this in Alaska. Oil companies like BP and Exxon will buy a Federal lease and sit on it and never develop it because developing the lease only makes oil less expensive. In Alaska, the state sued big oil and told them they had to develop it immediately or the lease would be pulled and given to another smaller driller. Big oil makes as much or more money with tight supply as open supply because of the price spike.

Now that's a hell of a conspiracy theory. Big oil works the system so they always get the best deal and the Republicans are always mad at the Democrats and the Democrats are always mad at the Republicans.

So, let me offer something to back this up. The oil tax breaks barely failed on a 52-48 vote. The Democrats has full control of the government for 2 years. They know this is a huge issue so why did they hold the vote until Republicans gained equal control?

What about opening more land for drilling? The Republicans had the same level of control from 2002-2004 yet they never passed ANWR and expanded offshore drilling. Yet, it was a huge issue for many years.

Ask most Americans if they support increased drilling and the answer is yes. Ask most Americans if they support ending the tax breaks for big oil and they say yes. The fact that both measures went down means BIG OIL played you. Anyone offer a better theory?

High gas prices are one area we are trained to blame each other. I believe the same is true for many issues. There is plenty of room for compromise on abortion, but there's never even a compromise offered. Why? Most Americans would accept a heartbeat law or letting the states decide.

Many times, there's an advantage to a business and to politicians for Republicans or Democrats to be the bad guys. And its why you gotta break free of the parties. I am a conservative leaning independent. You don't have to be a moderate to be outside the parties.
 
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Dekzper

Registered Member
Yeah, I think a lot of Americans hate each other. That's why there's so many laws and politicians have bodyguards. Btw, I've seen youtubes of "peaceful" demonstrations in our country. They did NOT look very "peaceful" to me. There was a lot of blood in all the ones I saw.

Anyway, I am def not a fan of that dude. But what they did in the park was NOT civil and was totally disrespectful. If I had been there, I woulda been friendly and if he (or his family) looked at me I woulda smiled. We're Americans and we need to respect each other but I haven't seen much respect.
 
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