Hating things isn’t cool

By Gabby Vacarelo

Ben Ostrowsky/Flickr
Ben Ostrowsky/Flickr

The trend of hating things simply to hate them needs to come to an end. It was once considered cool to hate on popular culture – to insult Billboard Hot 100 while praising obscure indie artists – but the time for that has passed. As a society, we should progress past our sense of entitlement and realize that it’s okay to enjoy things.

That’s not to say you can’t be dispassionate about things, but it should be for a legitimate reason. Disliking artists or musicians because of their catchy hooks, their use of (good) auto tune or the frequency with which they are played on the radio isn’t valid. Don’t make fun of someone for liking a band whose popularity has waned over the years, or even just for something that you personally think sounds weird. People should be allowed to take pleasure in what they want without feeling guilty about it.

Take the independent film “Liberal Arts,” for instance. One of the defining quotes in the movie comes from Elizabeth Olsen, who confronts co-star Josh Radnor after he insults her taste in literature. She says, “You think it’s cool to hate things, but it’s not. It’s boring. Talk about what you love, and keep quiet about what you don’t.”

That philosophy is something that everyone should carry with them in their daily lives. To a point, negativity is a choice. There’s so many things in this world that are worth endless amounts of praise – why waste energy on being cold and cynical when you could acknowledge all the beauty that exists.

A lot of this lack of enthusiasm stems from the existence of popular culture. Not buying into the mainstream is valid if you genuinely don’t enjoy the latest trend. But avoiding it simply because of its popularity makes no sense. Trends exist for a reason – because people like them. You don’t have to agree with it; there’s no need to buy $100 Birkenstocks just because everyone else has them. But there’s also no reason to externalize your hatred every time you see someone strolling around campus in their expensive and extremely comfortable, sandals.

One of the reasons why people tend to shy away from current trends is because of their desire to appear cultured. If you offhandedly say you listen to Gregory Alan Isakov, you might be seen as someone who searches for quality underground music, someone who promotes the undervalued. On the other hand, stating that you like One Direction usually results in an eye roll or an incredulous “Really?” But who’s to say that those two artists aren’t as equally talented?

This attempt to be an overall better and more interesting person just creates a negative atmosphere. People feel like they can’t talk about what they truly love, and then they remain enigmas that may never be uncovered. So let’s make a vow to keep an open mind and share our passion for the world rather than our disapproval.

Gabby Vacarelo is a Collegian columnist and can be reached at [email protected]