Monday, August 21, 2017

Is there a hate group near you?

Many people equate sustainability with environmentalism, but this is a common mistake. Sustainability is understanding tech interconnections between social, economic and environmental systems, working to make all three better. If communities are undermined or feel threatened, it often results in conflict, in extreme cases, war; and there's nothing sustainable about war....lots of fossil fuels, lots of destruction of resources, lots of environmental destruction, lots of human misery.

Right now, in the news, we have a face off between White supremacists and the groups they hate. Both feel threatened. So which group's needs should take precedence? The group that upholds values that promote the well-being of society and the environment. Based on important research by Manfred Max-Neef, we can see that hate threatens several basic human needs. 
Max-Neef classifies the fundamental human needs as:
  • subsistence
  • protection
  • affection
  • understanding
  • participation
  • leisure
  • creation
  • identity
  • freedom

So hate is antithetical to sustainability, to the well-being of society. It undermines subsistence, protection, affection, understanding, participation and freedom, at a minimum.

And ironically hate groups are driven by some of those same needs. White nationalists seem to feel like they are losing ground to other groups (subsistence) and getting together feeds their sense of identity. Maybe that insight is a path toward reducing hate.

How do you know if there's a hate group near you? Here's an interactive map.

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