Hate Week and it shorter daily version, the Two Minutes Hate, are opportunities to demonize the enemy of the day, real or not, in 1984, George Orwell’s iconic novel about a dystopian future of perpetual war, where thought police and Double-Think are societal norms as people rat each other out and believe whatever “Big Brother” tells them to believe.
For Plunderbund readers who have not read 1984, the Two Minutes Hate is a daily period in which Party members watch a film depicting the Party’s enemies and express their hatred for them for exactly two minutes, as Wikipedia informs us. The purpose of the Two Minutes Hate is to satisfy the citizens’ subdued feelings of angst and hatred from leading such a wretched, controlled existence. By re-directing these subconscious feelings away from the government and toward external enemies, which may or may not exist, the Party minimizes subversive thought and behavior.
Each year Hate Week is an event designed to increase the hatred for the current enemy of the Party, with everyone showing appropriate enthusiasm during Hate Week, ensuring that they are very against the opposing party and still very much allied with Big Brother.
After watching the Republican convention in Cleveland last week, which ended with a 75-minute version of Two Minutes Hate that was Donald Trump’s acceptance speech, Orwell’s long-ago concept became reality in Ohio.
“Lock her up,” the hate chant to hunt down Hillary Clinton and put her behind bars for all the misdeeds Republicans accuse her of, which now includes her “careless” use of a private email server that contained varying degrees of classified information, should be a stark reminder of one possible future if the Trump Train pulls into the station in November.
Anyone even half familiar with 1984 knows that it took the greatest democracy on earth 68 years for Orwell’s fictional idea of a fearful society controlled by a control-at-all-cost authoritarian leader to become real.