If you know me in the least, you know not to use the phrase: “love the sinner, hate the sin” around me. And you know that if you do use this special phrase in conversation, I will then muster of all the love that I can produce at that moment, and hopefully, lovingly express my strong aversion and repugnance for this phrase that has lingered in many pulpits over the years. I am of the opinion that there should be no hate involved anywhere in this process. Hate shouldn’t exist; it shouldn’t even be translatable in the English language. It should be taboo to hate anyone or anything. Take a second to think where hate has gotten us in history. Let’s not forget the most infamous: Adolf Hitler tops it off with his hatred and subsequent attempt to eradicate an entire gene pool, Maximilien Robespierre who brought about the “Reign of Terror” in France post Revolution, Idi Amin Dada: the evil Ugandan president, Pol Pot: the Cambodian leader of the Khmer Rouge, a group that successfully murdered 2 million Cambodians… one of the largest genocides in the world, let’s not forget Joseph Stalin of Russia who is now thought to have taken more lives than Hitler during his reign. Some of these men hated based on skin color/ ethnicity, some hated based on religion, some hated based on another man’s ideals, and some were simply evil, ruthless killers who enjoyed playing god… taking life at will.
What about Westboro Baptist church, the infamous church that protests homosexuality at military funerals while families are trying to bury their dead in peace? This is modern day hatred. Though I listed no American on the list above, America has its fair share of hate through the years. Hate of the native peoples here… look at Andrew Jackson’s forcing of the Cherokee and other tribes on what became known as the Trail of Tears. He hated Native Americans and he didn’t mind sending them on a cruel, west-ward trek during the dead of winter. What about our treatment of African Americans for years… for being the land of the free, America doesn’t have a great track record of not hating a race of people because of their skin. What about women? Women didn’t gain the right to vote until 1919… that was the same century that most of us reading this were born in. Women weren’t viewed as intelligent enough to be able to discern political beliefs and vote accordingly. How sad. (I still see women treated this way in the church, by the way). Anyway, I will digress from all the examples; I think it’s suffice to say that hatred has left wounds and scars on history that will never be able to be removed or forgotten. Black marks… blemishes… indicators of evil in the human race.
So don’t tell me to love the sinner, hate the sin. There should be no hate involved or we will be another generation that made the mistake of hating based on our categorization of someone. (Let me insert a comment here to also say not to misunderstand me: I believe in having one’s beliefs and morals; I am not encouraging a lack of any boundaries, I’m just asserting that some have gone to far with theirs). How many people hate another person and they’ve never even met that person? …never spoken to that person face to face.
But if you must have an intense dislike in your heart, then hate hunger, hate injustice, hate the selling of little girls into forced prostitution, hate unclean water, hate preventable diseases, hate rape, hate molestation, hate genocide, hate conflict diamonds. I’ll end with this quote by Anne Lamott: “And I realized once again that we’re not punished for our hatred… but by it.”