Hate Has A Purpose

Anonymous - Albuquerque, New Mexico
Entered on May 2, 2013

Stop me if you’ve heard this one. An infinite number of mathematicians walk into a bar. The first one says, “I’ll have a pint.” The second says, “I’ll have a 1/2 pint”. The third says “I’ll have a 1/4 pint”. The bartender says, “I’ve heard this joke before” and pours two pints.

A lot of things never touch zero. A line along an asymptote. The pint in the joke. Hate. Hatred is one of only two emotions that have a measurement. 3 years later, I hate the man who raped me. 5 years, I still hate the church that hurt me after my conversion. 12 years later, Muslims experience hate crimes and Sikhs get caught in the cross fire. 100 years, legislators think my uterus makes me incapable of making medical decisions. 150 years, congressmen meet to block their elected president just for the color of his skin. 1000’s and so called religions of peace fight over land smaller than New Jersey, destroying families and livelihoods.

But hate has a purpose. Like uranium hate can be harmful, sitting in hearts slowing poisoning and choking out life. But also like uranium hate can also work for us, give us energy and momentum. Every civil rights movement, protest, revolution started with someone saying, “I hate this. Let’s change it.” The key is acknowledging it, putting it away until we need it. Until there is some great wrong that must be corrected.

My hate gives me momentum. I’m more compassionate to the rape victims like me. In high school, I would have called the Steubenville victim a slut. But I when I was raped no one believed me, and I hated it. Because of this, I have become more compassionate towards victims. I am a Pagan, and being a representative of my faith can be difficult. It’s hard to keep momentum when you’re the one you’re following. But I hate how my parent’s church treated me because they didn’t know better. It keeps me motivated, and makes me dream of a day when pentacles aren’t judged, authors houses aren’t shot at, and Books of Shadow aren’t flushed down toilets.

But for all that, I dream of a world where it is negligible. So I pick my battles. When my future children hear their grandfather say something cruel, or misogynistic, and biting because that’s what he believes; I’ll bite my tongue, and rein in my temper. Because that isn’t a great wrong; I can tell my kids something else in the privacy of our home. If I do, my children will see it and they may carry it forward. But it will be a fraction of what I feel; and this will continue until the hatred is miniscule, so small a calculator would just read 0 instead of an actual number. It may not be world peace, but in the words of my middle school algebra teacher “it’s damn close enough.” And I hope that future generations have that.