When Hating Stuff Isn't Cool
"You think it's cool to hate things, and it's not. It's boring. Talk about what you love and keep quiet about what you don't." - Elizabeth Olsen as "Zibby" in Josh Radnor's "Liberal Arts"
There are many reasons I find myself intrigued with Josh Radnor's work. 1) How I Met Your Mother --- Come on! Great show! 2) He's from Ohio (woot woot!). - 3) I appreciate the tone of his work.
In his movie, Liberal Arts, Elizabeth Olsen's character (Zibby) hits Radnor's character (Jesse) with the above quote. The quote is deep. It has many layers... and if applied in different contexts, it can conjure up many different talks and potential praises and/or disagreements.
It's really easy to put something down, to say you hate it. In a world where status is king, Rankism can sneak-in to our everyday conversations.
In 2010, Robert W. Fuller Ph.D. penned an article for Psychology Today describing Rankism as...
"Rankism is an assertion of superiority. It typically takes the form of putting others down. It's what "Somebodies" do to "nobodies." Or, more precisely, it is what people who think they're Somebodies do to people they take for nobodies.
It turns out that rankism is the source of most man-made suffering. So, if we could get rid of it, we would be a lot happier..."
You don't have to scroll too far down your newsfeeds to find people bashing other people, media, arts, books, and so on. Sometimes we get so heated about something that we don't like, that we keep on providing them with free publicity by plastering it all over our respective profiles (remember, all publicity is good publicity, right?).
I tend to think, in most situations, that Radnor's advice is helpful. Talk about what you love and keep quiet about what you don't.
Do you want people to turn away from media you disagree with? Tell them about the media you do agree with.
Do you want people to stay away from voting for a particular candidate? Tell them about the candidate you support.
Do you want people to hear your side of social justice issues? Share your side, don't bash others.
Example: Instead of saying, "I hate rainy days." try, "I love sunny days." --- Rainy days playing second fiddle in your mind is implied and your chances of putting-off the person who prefers rainy days has dropped significantly.
If you're sitting here reading, trying to poke holes in this article, for example, let me ask you... why are you trying so hard to do so? Does it make you feel better? Don't let rankism sneak-in on you. It's totally OK if you don't like what I have to say, but some other people might like it.
We live in a world where it is easy to identify people, and groups of people, by things they hate. If you want to change the world, even a little, don't let hate be your first impression.