55. Why Do They Hate Us?

6 May

There is a lot of speculation as to “why they hate us.” Commentators have various reasons, some rather complicated. First we must identify two entities: the U.S. government and “Americans.” (Note: this blog does NOT address right, wrong, or justifications — it is just an attempt to provide an objective, unbiased answer to the question.)

People in certain countries hate  our government for obvious reasons. Our armies have killed and injured many thousands of their people and have tried to change their way of life. Our post-war occupation policies were not always well thought out. We attacked social organizations that were established over a period of hundreds of years. Left alone, many people did prosper and enjoyed their social structures. Americans appeared and I am sure that at least some arrogantly criticized customs that people were used to. (As I said above, I am not endorsing or criticizing any actions).

By now, you probably assume that I am talking about Afghanistan and Iraq. Yes, but much of what I argue I think is applicable to many other countries with which we have interacted.

Now let us turn to hatred of “Americans” and our way of life. My first thought is that they are jealous of our wealth and romantic freedom. I think part of the problem is this jealousy. But there is always another very basic factor: we challenge their beliefs. Most adults develop a rigid set of religious, political and social beliefs. Changing fundamental beliefs of mature adults, in most cases, is almost impossible. Any threats to beliefs, in many cases, are met with considerable anger and/or fear. And, of course, hatred for those who make the threats. Many people have spent dozens of years acting in certain ways so that they could achieve an ultimate reward. How can someone like that accept the fact that this great effort was all wasted and fruitless? You might want to punish someone who shatters your dreams.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: