Opinion

Some people in this world are worth hating

Damn that old-time jazz exhorting us never to hate. Parents and preacher men are quite right to inculcate in us the will power to transcend racial, social, and sexual barriers, but they are quite wrong when they encourage us to unconditionally forgive and forget. Good people should not be afraid to hate genuinely evil people. I contend that, at the very least, an individual who intentionally and remorselessly inflicts unwanted suffering on another sentient being counts as genuinely evil. Consider some candidates:
In a 29 April 2002 article for the BBC, Flora Botsford reported on a hitherto unchecked practice involving the cruel execution of “tens of thousands” of Spanish hunting dogs at the end of hunting season. While top performing dogs had their necks swiftly broken, they also were hanged low off the ground to writhe in agony for the amusement of their killers.
In a 9 December 2002 article, the World Society for the Protection of Animals reported on the surfacing of videos showing Peruvian soldiers conducting training exercises involving dogs:
“After diving through a hoop of fire, [the soldiers]charge at a dog that is tied, spread-eagled, between two vertical poles. The men then take turns to slash and stab the dog, as it yelps and struggles to escape. This continues until the dog dies. It is then torn to pieces and bits of it eaten.”
In a January 14th 2003 article, the BBC reported on the killing of a dog in Jordan that was trained to carry messages between young lovers. The canine got its head smashed with a stone by an angry gentleman who intercepted a marriage proposal for his love-struck sister.
This last story mostly reflects on stupidly conservative views about premarital intimacy held by tight-assed patriarchs across the Middle East and beyond, but like the others, it definitely speaks in a very profound way to the sheer disrespect that people have for beings that exemplify loyalty and honesty, virtues that routinely escape humans.
Can we appropriately hate such people for subjecting dogs to hanging, slashing, and smashing? Perhaps evildoers don’t know any better. Perhaps evildoers did not receive affection during infancy. Perhaps their behavior is a function of their upbringing, which reflects decidedly pathetic social norms. To borrow from the preacher man, perhaps it would be morally appropriate for us to hate the sin (the decidedly pathetic social norm) and not the sinner.
I’m left to wonder if a distinction really exists between the mind of society and the mind of the individual. And I find it hard to believe that something as universally unloved as suffering can be innocently applied to anything capable of experiencing it. I fear that its incessant application makes the very possibility of progress illusory. So why shouldn’t I be filled with hatred?

R.S. Jolly is a senior majoring in philosophy.

January 24, 2003

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

View photos as Miami Hurricanes Coach Jim Morris ends 41-year career on Saturday, May 19, 2018, at M ...

The sullen, charcoal sky opened with a vengeance Saturday afternoon at Mark Light Field in Coral Gab ...

Hurricanes football aficionados: How does another College GameDay at the University of Miami campus ...

Get out your calendars once again, UM football fans. The Atlantic Coast Conference has announced the ...

Lonnie Walker IV, so eager to begin his professional basketball career that he left the University o ...

A snapshot guide to the start of summer in and around UM. ...

Former investment banker Charmel Maynard leads UM’s investments and treasury functions. ...

Over his more than two decades at the U, the dean of students from 1976-1989 always put students fir ...

The final Sea Secrets lecture at the Rosenstiel School examines the biofluorescence of marine organi ...

Maintenance mechanic Milton Davis has kept UM housing humming for decades. ...

After 25 years, head coach Jim Morris had just one request for the pregame festivities for his final ...

In honor of Jim Morris' final regular season game as head coach at Miami on Saturday, May 19, t ...

Sophomore righthander Evan McKendry struck out 11 to help lead the Hurricanes to their 10thstraight ...

Check out over 60 of the top pictures from the Miami women's tennis team's matchup with to ...

Due to inclement weather expected in the area, the Miami baseball program announced game time for Fr ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.