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Hate Hurts Democracy

Updated: Aug 25, 2022

For centuries repressive governments have used hate to divide people and manipulate their citizens. Here in Sarasota we are witnessing the spread of antisemitic fliers -- and now trucks driven to strategic spots with vile signs regarding school board candidates. The fact that these ugly statements are being openly displayed is a sign that our norms are fraying.

Some extremists think this rhetoric will influence your vote. Those behind this messaging hide -- but they should be exposed, as should all those who refuse to repudiate their hateful message.

When you see unchecked hate, know that it is the most popular tool of those that would substitute authoritarianism for the democracy so many Americans fought and died to preserve. "Pornography in the schools, grooming baby killers” -- this is the language of hate designed to have you substitute emotion for information. This type of language is a red flag that someone or some group wants to create hate and fear, because they believe the voters can be manipulated. This is how democracies are lost.

Vote for the candidate of your choice. but don’t make your choice based on the type of divisive lies that have been used in authoritarian countries. We are a democracy, and democracies depend on rational thinking -- not hate -- to survive.

--Bob Gary

LBKDC Board Member

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