While Americans can agree on almost nothing else, the idea that hate is just awful gets unanimous assent. Researchers affiliated with the George Soros Open Society report that random samples show almost no one willing to say that they love hate, or even like it. But why, when there is so much hate on display?
To answer that question a Soros funded interdisciplinary group of social scientists, philosophers and psychologists from Ivy League Colleges convened, noodled and produced a report that concluded that people really don’t hate hate as much as they say. Even worse, they found that, despite what people say, some enjoy hating very much. It is obvious for example that Nazis—of whom there are millions, including most Trump supporters—love to hate, even if they won’t admit it.
While these may seem like obvious and expected findings, the report also had to contend with some complexities and willful ignorance. For example, the people who hate Nazis (Antifa) are not themselves haters, per se. Angry and even forceful opposition to a hater is actually a form of love and it is meant as a corrective to hate, and therefore cannot be hate itself.
The report then elaborated on this idea, diving into the various forms that hate takes, from the blatant use of Nazi symbols (like the US flag and the national anthem) to the silent forms of hate, including not paying attention to hate and protesting it. Remaining silent in the face of hate is also hate. For example, people dining in outdoor restaurants who do not stand or kneel as demanded by protesters are silent haters. As the report contended, silent hate is one of its more nefarious forms. Sometimes it is enough, the report advises, to expose silent haters with loud slogans and threatening behavior; other times, more strenuous measures are called for, including persuading your enemy to submit, confess and acknowledge their secret hatreds, even when they have been hidden from the hater himself. Large-scale mass action like doxing, cancelling, career destruction, harassment, threats to family and associates and direct physical action such as theft, arson and the use of chemical and ballistic weapons are all valid means of countering concealed hate. And these methods, the report insists, are not in themselves hateful since their effect is to reduce the aggregate amount of hate in the world, making the world a less hateful place.
The Soros funded report concludes with a warning that while a protester in the act of destroying hateful infrastructure, people or organizations, may appear by his facial expressions and his use of arson, explosives and other weapons to be feeling something hateful, this is not the same as actual hate. To reinforce this important distinction universities and media organizations must make the most strenuous efforts to ensure that the tools of hating hate are not confused with actual hate, which would be in itself an act of hate.