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No room for hatred

Looking ahead: Team Oracle USA trains in the Great Sound for the America’s Cup, which has the promise of helping to boost tourism and encourage Bermudian participation, our columnist writes, adding that the community must focus on positive elements as we tackle issues (Photograph by Warren Jones of Oracle Team USA)

Bermuda continues to move into the new world of embracing diversity in an atmosphere of opportunity for all, regardless of racial, religious, ethnic or political affiliations. In the long struggle to open doors for anyone, young or old, who endeavours to build rather than tear down, our Island has no room for hatred.

Democracy provides a voice for all, but when that opportunity is abused by anyone or any group with irresponsible sentiments rooted in hatred, the entire community and its core values are threatened.

Leaders in every area of community life who strive for a better Bermuda need to raise one voice in condemnation of hatred in any form, which demeans and disrespects the dignity of of others.

Few people on this Earth have never had a wave of anger over some matter that gave way to emotions that create hatred for someone or some issue, but in most cases when the dust of discord settles and reason is applied, both sides usually have a clearer picture of the damage that out-of-control hatred can cause.

Our young people in Bermuda are quicker to embrace the new age of diversity and many are taking advantage of countless opportunities today that were not available decades ago.

Nothing should be done to derail what is a movement in the right direction for all Bermudians, especially the family, which is the strongest pillar of any society.

History has taught many lessons of what destructive hatred, unchecked, can do to people anywhere on this planet.

The American civil war, two major world wars, and countless military conflicts throughout the world, have resulted in the loss of millions of lives that include men, women and children.

Hatred and greed is at the centre of bitter clashes in the Middle East, which has touched off migration on a scale the world is still trying to cope with.

One of the key messages of the recent visit to the United States by Pope Francis was that the dignity of every human being must be respected, invoking the golden rule of ‘do unto others as you would have them do unto you’. He was very much aware of the complexities of human relationships in a world with many challenges.

Here in Bermuda as we tackle many issues — including rebuilding our wounded economy, putting tourism on a sound footing, creating more jobs, violent crime, and behavioural problems that spilt over into our sports arena — there is still much to be done in staying focused on positive elements.

The America’s Cup has significant promise of helping not only to boost tourism, but also stimulate activity to encourage Bermudian participation.

Despite political divisiveness, which remains a stumbling block for working closer together for the good of Bermuda, both the Bermuda Government, the Opposition, unions and community groups should keep a collective eye on how best to achieve success as we move forward.

There will always be differences of opinion and that must be recognised as a principle part of any democracy. However, it should never be a case of who shouts the loudest in dealing with highly sensitive issues.

Since we all share the planet together, there must be respect for different views over what is considered core values for building a healthy peaceful society.

There will be no quick or easy solutions for some of the problems, where traditional values clash with modern-day lifestyles.

The right to agree or disagree with the utmost diginity should be held high as a basic human right. That is what keeps the principle of democracy alive.

All of Bermuda must remain vigilant in ensuring that no form of hatred should be allowed to poison efforts to continue building a better life for every Bermudian.

We must provide something better for the next generation, and this means there is no room for hatred in the process.