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Reason for hate crimes and violence

This Ichi

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I cannot understand what drives people to harm other people who didn't do any bad things.

When It does come to our community I cannot make up any reason why someone would do such horrible things.

It might sound odd but why are people doing this? I am asking this because I wonder how I would and/or should react in such a situation. Fortunately I hadn't have one.

I hope that understanding transphobic persons (at least so some extend) might lead to a safer respond that might reduce the risk of injury, at least physical.

Sorry for the uncomfortable question, but thanks for any answers.


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You're going to have many different answers, as it depends on each person's worldview.  I come from a Christian perspective, and to me the answer is "original sin." 


You see, each person is naturally capable of doing some rather nasty things.  Society and/or faith train us to restrain those impulses.  God's grace helps too.  But some people are more resistant to the good side and more inclined to follow a path to nastiness and savagery.  


For whatever reason, people's differences often provide a friction point.  Maslow's hierarchy of needs shows us that we respond to the most essential needs first.  At some level, we see those who are "other" as competition for survival.  The sin nature inside us tells us we have to push aside or eliminate that threat. 


The man who attacked me last month saw me as a threat.  Perhaps due to the cost of an at-fault accident, financial stress, or something else. When he got closer to me, he probably saw me as "other" due to size, orientation, gender, style of dress, or whatever.  Ironically, if he had simply told me that he had a money issue, I would have been willing to work something out aside from insurance/police.  


The solution is to teach the values that help people avoid "othering" and focus on commonality, patience, and kindness.  For those of us who have been hurt, it is hard to move from the pain into forgiveness.  Lots of the hate in the world comes from pain.... avoiding that takes intention and effort because it is not natural to "love your enemies" and "do good to those who hate you." 

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Thank you for your detailed answer.

You already gave me helpful insight.

From my experience religion is a lot stronger in North America. I been to the US seven times and I did life in British Columbia for a year. It did make the impression that not only a lot more people are into religion but also how serious they were about it, compared to Germany. In my town there is a catholic youth group. They are open to any gender and even use gender neutral language since years.


Now I think part of all the different answers it is also where we live.


I can't even take a guess how hard it might be for you to forgive. 7 years ago I was victim of a burglary twice from the same person. The person could not been charged because of to few evidence. I knew that there is nothing I can do to undo this situation so I just moved on.

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Hi @This Ichi

Ultimately this is an unanswerable question. We can never truly understand why people choose to do such awful things as horrible as that seems.

There is an expression, "-crap- rolls downhill", it means that something bad comes from those in power and gets dumped on those with less power until it is left on those with no power - so some may have been taught this kind of behaviour (school, culture, organisation, religion, upbringing, media portrayels), or have been on the receiving end of abuse and now express themselves this way.

Sometimes the easiest way to fit in and be accepted is to make sure someone else is "othered", which is why TERFS (trans excluding radical feminists) became a thing.

Some are trying really hard to hide a part of themselves by pointing attention elsewhere, and some people just take joy from other people's misery - because they can is a scary but accurate reason.

I think "transphobia" (phobia means fear) is a misnomer, while it works for those who are trans but are scared to question or accept it, unfortunately it writes off hatred, ignorance and bigotry as a fear of something that isn't understood.

Really "transmisia" (misia means hatred) would have been a more accurate word to adopt for those who choose to hate.


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Yeah, there is a lot of "rolling downhill" going on.  Bullies victimize soft targets.  


The usual way we avoid becoming victims is to become harder to hurt.  This creates power disparity, and I've noticed that frequently the people who become bullies have done so as a reaction to a power disparity in their own lives.  


It would seem that reducing the ability to have power over others is part of the answer to reducing violence and hatred.

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