The topics of “violence and hate” came up during my lesson of S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders. It’s amazing how re-reading this book from an adult perspective has moved me emotionally. I had a discussion with my students today about how hate breeds violence; seemed appropriate especially during this time in history.
I want my students to learn that hate is taught. But how do you address this controversial issue? Because my essential question was, “What does it mean to respect humanity?” I knew I had to take a delicate-approach on current affairs as to not offend either perspective.
What did I say? I told them. Hate is powerful. It spreads. It is nearly impossible to correct not only how hate makes people feel but also to forgive what hate makes people do. The actions of hate can take people decades of teaching to unlearn. Hate divides us- It makes people take sides in arguments that will inevitably spoil the beauty in our hearts and lives.
I hope that the next generation will never know the association that violence is synonymous with survival. I am reminded that making serious attempts to spread peace is vital.