I often have people tell me that I’m a hateful human being.

Sometimes, these are complete strangers who incessantly lurk like sharks in my Twitter feed, other times estranged family members firing one last injurious email salvo before blocking me from responding, or self-righteous former church friends assuring me that I am going to hell but promising they are praying I will find Jesus before it is too late.

For a long time, I would passionately refute these accusations; mounting a fierce defense of my position and offering a ready litany of evidence proving that they have mislabeled me, and outlining the many ways I have been misrepresented or misunderstood. I do not do that any longer. Now, I simply admit that they are right — because they are.

I am a hateful human being. I hate the heart cancer of racism.

I hate the way it dehumanizes and distorts people, the ugliness it perpetuates, how fully toxic it is to those afflicted with it and how much it violates those who absorb it. I am disgusted at how little we have learned and how much of our grotesque history we are repeating in these days.

I hate open contempt of refugees.

I hate the brutality that already battered, exhausted, and terrified human beings face after braving injury and imprisonment and death in order to find safety and rest for themselves and those they love — the utter lack of mercy so many here provide them. I hate how the poor huddled masses yearning to breathe freely find so little respite here.

I hate violent resistance to diversity.

I hate the fact that a huge portion of our population has become addled by such irrational fear of difference, that they are threatened by immigrants and terrified of change and walling off the world and shouting down conversation and eliminating anyone who does not look and worship and love the way they do.

I hate defiant anti-Science ignorance.

I hate watching beleaguered healthcare workers and traumatized school children and still-grieving family members, having to fight not only a vicious and insidious virus that has killed hundreds of thousands of people—but the very people they live alongside and are tethered to. I am sickened by the reality that no amount of death will move them to act with a shred of empathy, and that they are inexplicably doubling down on disinformation, knowing full well they are wrong.

I hate terrorist sympathizers.

I hate seeing once-rational, decent human beings defend violent insurrections, ignore mass shootings, shrug at brazen assaults on voter rights, rationalize police executions of black men, applaud gun-wielding politicians, and cheer social media bullies.

I hate that sick people have to choose between getting well and paying their mortgages. I hate that we have a bloated Military and a starving citizenry. I hate that LGBTQ teenagers cannot simply live in peace from their peers, their pastors, or their politicians. I hate that people of color are still being denied a voice in our political process. I hate that president who try to overturn elections are idolized by 75 million people. I hate that so many Christians seem to have no need for Jesus or his teachings.

Yes, I love disparate humanity so much, that seeing it under such constant and needless duress and witnessing it being subjected to such mindless violence at the hands of its neighbors boils my blood and turns my stomach and breaks my heart.

And yes, I fully, completely, and unrepentantly hate all of it. I wish you did, too.

I wish you were as disgusted by the seemingly bottomless inhumanity this nation is immersed in as I am; that the conspiratorial online garbage and grocery store anti-mask terrorism and intentionally incendiary Fox News fiction and MAGA repugnant white supremacy—was something you abhorred instead of participated in.

I wish you were not so comfortable with and complicit in and dismissive of this stupid, shallow tribal violence that so many here have been manipulated into, because it is rotting you from the inside-out and making the already difficult and painful experience of living so much more so.

You hate to be asked to wear a mask. You hate to hear the words Black Lives Matter. You hate the idea of everyone having healthcare. You hate evidence that the planet is warming. You hate to see your country growing less white.

Good and loving people should despise bigotry and discrimination. They should be sickened by the denial of people’s inherent humanity. They should be disgusted at perversions of truth and distortions of facts. They should rage against the poverty of empathy we are living in. They should have a ferocity for humanity that will not let them rest.

Good people should hate the hatred this nation is afflicted with. I do.

John Pavlovitz

Library of Congress

The original version of this Op Ed was published on johnpavlovitz.com

John Pavlovitz launched an online ministry to help connect people who want community, encouragement, and to grow spiritually. Individuals who want to support his work can sponsor his mission on Patreon, and help the very real pastoral missionary expand its impact in the world.