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Hurt People Hurt People: The Supremacist Mindset

Stop thinking your sh*t doesn’t stink. It does, and just the same as everyone else’s.

By Carmen PetraliaPublished 6 months ago 5 min read
“Clipart Inequality.” Clipground, clipground.com/clipart-inequality.html. Accessed 9 Jan. 2024.

Whether it’s money, power, or status, the supremacist mindset has infected our world as we know it. This thought process entails the feeling of being superior to others. The desire for dominance has led to many tragic, historically traumatizing events. The constant chase for these superficial rankings is like being stuck in a collective, societal cycle of abuse. We continue to repeat history with wars, corrupt politics and systematic racism. By always trying to one-up each other, we lose sight of our fight for equality and equity.

‘Hurt people hurt people’ is a quote about how we repeat history. Trauma survivors don’t know how else to act. It’s all a big game of projecting on each other. If you’re getting bullied at home, you may be inclined to bully your friends at school. If you are taught how to be a human by way of abuse, you may end up hurting others, or yourself, if you do not unlearn this aggression. If you grow up in war, all you will know is war. This philosophy works from an individual level to a worldwide level, but it is not an excuse.

Take the Palestine-Israel conflict, for example. The Jewish population was moved to the state of Palestine, not as a consequence of, but after, the mass slaughter of its people. With the killing of the Jewish people were other groups thought to be ‘racially inferior’, according to the Nazis. Since the Israeli state was declared, there have been consistent genocidal language and action being taken against the Palestinian population. Genocide is an extreme example of the supremacy mindset. As you can see, the Israeli government chose to answer the hurting of their peoples’ genocide with another genocide. Instead of proper healing, the two major religious groups have turned against each other again. Instead of gathering to repair the hurt that has occurred, there is war and genocide.

Corrupt politics are at the center of this massive issue. Politicians are notorious for chasing status, power and money. The supremacist mindset is a diabolical, inhuman, violent one-way street to reaching the top of the pecking order. Placing more value on one set of human lives versus the next allows politicians to steal from and gain exactly what they want; status, power and money. Profiting off the deaths of innocent people doesn’t matter to them, so long as those people’s lives aren’t as important as theirs. Corrupt politicians hold the supremacist mindset high in the hierarchy of thoughts and needs. Yet politics are one of the only legitimate ways to influence our societies. As a people, we are affected by the policies and legislation that are enacted within our governments. We do not benefit when the grand scheme of politics is based on one person being more worthy than the next. How are we ever going to be equal when thought processes and policies like these are in place?

Throughout history we have been fighting for equity and equality. Of course, there has been applaudable progress. We wouldn’t have so many rights if there hadn’t been some positive changes. However, just when we think our societies are becoming more equal, the tables get turned. We finally start to hear the voices that have been silenced, but there is a cost. The voices that are finally being heard begin to inherently silence the ones who have been talking the whole time. As a society, we have trouble lifting each other up without putting someone else down.

The tensions between different ethnographic groups of people, and different species, have become even more taut. Instead of making space for everyone, we must take away space from Sally, so Susie can have some. This is yet another example of the supremacist mindset trickling into our daily lives. Thinking one person has to be above the next is how we’ve functioned as long as history has existed. It is a difficult problem to curb. Feeling superior in one’s race, sex, religion, or sexual orientation means suffering is involved. This pressure can be relieved with empathy. If there is good communication and compassion for another’s perspective and identity, we can reduce this suffering. Recognizing and stopping this perpetual supremacist mindset could help us act, be and treat each other more equal.

Systematic racism has been one of the biggest perpetrators of the supremacy we consistently see. All of it stems from slavery, racism, colorism, classism and more. Blaming your problems on an entire group of people is the longest standing trend our population engages in. The dehumanization, enslavement and destruction of African tribes during the ‘European exploration’ reveals one of the first times the supremacist way of thinking reared its ugly head. Since then, the Black and Brown populations have been put below every other race over and over again. From the Jim Crow era to modern slavery to the pingpong between having rights or not, our systems have continued to place darker skinned people lower on the inconsequential hierarchy of race. Of course, this ranking is important nowadays as it determines one’s financial stability, chances of success or demise, and quality of life. The necessity of this hierarchy is still largely in question. And by ‘in question’, I mean absolutely harmful towards people who live on this planet that are just trying to live. The hierarchy of race incubates the supremacy mindset, and only allows specific, white, cisgender, straight people to thrive.

This leads to the unfortunate consequences this toxic mindset causes; people terrorizing each other with no productive conclusion. This ethos is responsible for a good portion of this planet’s suffering. It is evil and wrong to put anyone above or below you. Engaging in the supremacist frame of mind is unproductive, yet addicting. All in all, it is something that many people do, so they can get by in this world. A lot of times, we see innocent people turn to this superiority complex to grind hard, make money and support their families. What it comes down to is how can I feed my children and myself in this capitalist hellscape? More often than not, people are forced to submit to the degenerative practices that are constantly shoved down our throats. That being said, capitalism, systematic racism and the supremacist mindset need to be put to rest, so we can live our lives equitably, peacefully and freely.

Nollan, Jack. “The Real Truth about ‘Hurt People Hurt People.’” A Conscious Rethink, 16 June 2023, www.aconsciousrethink.com/18118/hurt-people-hurt-people/.

“What’s the Israel-Palestinian Conflict about and How Did It Start ...” Edited by Edmund Blair, Reuters, 2023, www.reuters.com/world/middle-east/israel-palestinian-dispute-hinges-statehood-land-jerusalem-refugees-2023-10-10/.

Academic, Oxford. “Was Israel Created Because of the Holocaust?” Medium, History Uncut, 18 May 2019, medium.com/history-uncut/was-israel-created-because-holocaust-12f4f5ffc4b9.

Frayer, Lauren, et al. “Where Britain, France and Germany Stand on the Israel-Hamas War.” NPR, NPR, 30 Oct. 2023, www.npr.org/2023/10/30/1209529055/where-britain-france-and-germany-stand-on-the-israel-hamas-war.


About the Creator

Carmen Petralia

A little lady from Chicago itching to rid herself of the overload of ideas stuck in her brain.

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    Carmen PetraliaWritten by Carmen Petralia

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