Published On: Wed, Aug 31st, 2016

A time to love and a time to hate

Jacob Gelt DekkerThe USA-November elections appear to be all about whom you hate. “Do you hate Trump more than Hillary, vote Hillary!”

The UK preceded the USA in this way with its Brexit vote, a vote of hate against the EU, not love for Brexit.

Arthur Goldwag, the author of the new book “The New Hate: A History of Fear and Loathing on the Populist Right,” argues that the racist and conspiracist approach of today is largely the same as it was fifty years ago.

Hate sells, especially during elections. Hate can quickly grow a political party out of nothing. Ten-fifteen years ago on Curacao, Anthony Goddett grew his political party FOL with a hate campaign against the haves, which quickly gathered enormous popularity with the have-nots.

Helmin Wiels’ war cry against Dutch colonialism, ” We hold body bags in ample supply to send all Dutch back home,” quickly gained him the leadership of his newly formed party, PS, which became the largest. Wiels’ daily hate sermons by radio were the growth hormone and Helmien the anointed by God appointed Moses who would lead his people from slavery into the Promised Land. As we now know after five bitter years, the PS party was devoid of any administrative and governmental skills.

Although many perceive politics as a piece of carnivalesque entertainment, it is not a game. Words of hate have severe consequences. The highest death tolls documented were in communist states. The Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin, the People's Republic of China under Mao Zedong, and Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge resulted in non-combatants killings with estimates ranging from a low of 21 million to a high of 70 million. More recently, Hugo Chavez hate- speeches against the USA, resulted in uncontrolled massive killings and crime in large Venezuelan cities.

The September island election will not be decided on reason, not on the best political program, but on the most favorable report to emotion. The political arena hardly has any charismatic leaders today, but the one who singles himself out and sweeps up the electorate with emotion, with hate, will be the uncontested winner.

The people are out for blood and games and even finely tuned Christians all read Ecclesiastes 3:8:

”….. a time to love and a time to hate a time for war and a time for peace.”

By Jacob Gelt Dekker
Opinion columnist for Curaçao Chronicle

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