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When did “Disagree” become synonymous with “Hate”?

July 23, 2012

Something has been weighing on my mind for several weeks now and I realized that I may not be the only one who feels this way, so I thought I would write about it.  It seems of late, that everything I read in the news and in social media talks about “hatred” when someone is in disagreement with them about a topic, action or behavior.  I don’t understand this at all.

I grew up (and still am) a fairly conservative individual—someone who chooses to “follow the rules” to the best of my abilities.  Ask the people I went to high school with—when most of my classmates were out partying, I was the nerd who never drank or smoked or did anything “crazy” like that.  That being said, I have generally been pretty open-minded.  It’s not my job to judge others, just as I would hope that others don’t judge me.

The media storm and hatred that has propagated recently over differences in opinion is really disheartening.  Whether you believe in universal health care or not, whether you believe that marriage is between a man and woman or not—if my opinion differs from yours does that mean that I am a hater, a bigot or evil?

The fact is that everyone has free will in their opinion about what is “right” or “wrong” according to their own internal morality.  And we all have the right to behave in a way that aligns with our belief systems.  Yet when the CEO of Chick-fil-A, Dan Cathy expresses his beliefs regarding the biblical definition of marriage, the news and social media are flooded with hateful messages.  Likewise, businesses showing support for the gay community get equally hateful messages boycotting their brands.

The fact is that God loves all of us—we all are sinners and yet He loves us.  My personal belief is that the Bible gives us a pretty clear picture of how to behave in the 10 commandments.  Does that mean that when my daughter disobeys me or my son hits his little brother, that I shouldn’t express my belief of why that is wrong?  If I tell my kids that it’s not okay to take a candy bar from the grocery store without paying, will I be subject to hateful messages?

I’m sure many will disagree with my statements and quite frankly I’m okay with that.  My hope, of course, is that if you choose to comment that your comment is free of hateful intent.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Brian Richardson permalink
    July 23, 2012 11:31 pm

    Good for you… I feel the same way.

  2. Amy Kalscheur permalink
    July 24, 2012 8:16 am

    Yes, we all have free will to our opinion – at least for now – and we can chose our own right from wrong. However, there is a right and wrong, a Truth. We should seek it out at all times. And when someone has obviously gone astray, it is our responsibility to gently (that’s the key word) remind them. If they hear the message, we have won them to the Truth. If they reject it, we are to shake the dust from our feet and leave. That’s why I won’t shop at certain stores and shop at others instead.
    That being said, when I’m wrong, I pray that others reprove me as well. This search can get pretty tiresome and confusing. I need all the help I can get.
    As for as the media, it’s pretty loud. It’s message is blaring. Turn it down. Turn it off if needed. The message is better when it is spread person-to-person, neighbor-to-neighbor. The message of the gospel was delivered that way, across the world. It’s a better system, slower, quieter, and full of love.

  3. July 24, 2012 10:17 am

    i thought dan was very respectful in the way he expressed his beliefs.

  4. July 27, 2012 10:02 am

    Dan Cathy like every other American is entitled to his opinion, and through the freedom of speech, is allowed to go on TV, Radio or anywhere and express his opinion of marriage. However, he and his supporters cannot even dare think that we are being intolerant, by not giving our money to a business. I did not call for his murder, or the looting/destroying of Chick-Fil-A stores, I am simply making a conscious decision to use my speech in the form of the money I will NOT be spending in ANY Chick-Fil-A. I can think of no more civil way to disagree with his beliefs.

    • August 2, 2012 11:35 am

      Nobody ever accused the people who are exercising their first amendment rights to refrain from giving their money to Chic-fil-A of being ‘intolerant’. But Cathy, and all those who choose to support the traditional family unit, are being called ‘intolerant’ by those who simply won’t tolerate that support. See the disconnect? Make your decisions. But is there any reason for either side to make those decisions SO DARN LOUD!?!

  5. August 1, 2012 10:27 pm

    @Daniel, thanks for your comment and you are absolutely right…every person has the right to choose to spend their money where ever they want. My concern are those individuals and groups that are propagating hate (whether verbal or physical). To my knowledge Mr. Cathy has never said “he hates gays” or demonstrated discrimination against them (as employees or customers). He simply believes that same-sex relationships are immoral, similar to how someone would believe that pornography or adultery is immoral.

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