In Defense of Terrible People

When I read through the news and encounter a story about some terrible person that did some terrible thing, the initial reaction is disgust or anger, but then I try to temper my reaction and focus instead on attempting to feel compassion for the person that the rest of the world hates.

This isn’t always easy, the world is a terrible place, and the closer you look, the more terrible it sometimes seems.  As a people, we commit violence against one another in hatred, only once we are convinced we are righteous enough to do so.  That’s a tough trait to overcome.

I read through comments, and see the vitriol and viciousness that good people become when they think up a punishment for people’s transgressions.  In those moments, how are we really any different than the subject of our hatred?

The inhumanity of humanity is the greatest paradox of our existence.  The more we attempt to snuff it out, the greater it seems to grow.  In the end we are only left with the violence of our righteousness to destroy us once and for all.

I’d like to think we’re better than that, that we can be better than that, but the more I look around, the more I become convinced that I might be alone in that line of thinking.  This is what we are, it’s what we’ve been, and the thought that we could ever be anything but this, requires an awareness that we as a people do not yet possess.

Those are tough odds to overcome, and time is running short.  We’re reaching a level of technology that requires unity to keep it from destroying everything, and we’re using it as a weapon to kill one another.

So hey, let’s take a moment right here and now to hate our enemies a little less, and forgive ourselves a little more.  If this little bit of time is all we’ve got, we might as well enjoy it while it’s here.

You can’t be angry and happy at the same time.