There are some bad people out there. There are people that hate. People who will universally disregard someone solely based on their differences. People who will willfully discriminate and in the worst cases harm.
However in my heart of hearts, I do believe most people do not hate. Most are willing to respect those that are different than them and don't consciously discriminate. And most people wouldn't intentionally mistreat or hurt another human being.
But I also believe all people have at one time or the other have stereotyped, misjudged or misunderstood others without realizing.
I don't find ignorance to be a huge problem. How can someone be expected to know what they don't? Of course our elders and communities have shaped our understandings. Of course our experiences have led us to feel a certain way about representatives who have in one way or another perpetrated our dignity or maybe just run in contradiction to our own values and beliefs.
I do however find the inability, or perhaps unwillingness of us to take a long hard look at ourselves and our society, the largest problem dominating our culture today.
It is not the haters that are causing the problem and it isn't changing the haters minds that will save us.
It is people like you and me, who need to bravely look into our own hearts and mind, our own families, our own communities and our own societal institutions and courageously address what we don't know and what we don't understand. We need to listen more. We need to look beyond what is at first glance and dig a little deeper to find out what shapes the core of our individual and collective experiences.
It is the elevation of consciousness, individually and collectively that can heal us. It takes great courage to be awake, but we need it now more than ever. It takes guts to venture out of the margins of our own outer experience and probably even more to venture out of the prison of our own egos and self preserving minds.
As long as the entirety of what we choose to know, is what we know already, suffering will continue to pervade our existence. We must be brave enough to face our ignorance and unconsciousness if we are to evolve ourselves, our families, our communities, our country and our world to their potential.