Hate is a word used too often without understanding the acts with which it can be associated, said Sandra Garcia, USF religious studies professor.
Garcia said that much of the hate people have toward others is founded on fear and stereotypes, and education can only help people understand this feeling.
Tonight, filmmaker Brent Scarpo will present an educational film about hate crimes called Journey to a Hate-Free Millennium in the Special Events Center at 7.
ScarpoÃs program is intended to help students realize the hatred and violence happening in society.
The presentation will target specific instances of hate crimes and stories from the families of those who have suffered them.
An example is the national incident involving Matthew Shepard, a freshman at the University of Wyoming who was murdered in 1998. Shepard, a homosexual, was murdered as a result of a hate crime.
Ã¬Their hatred is very intense and irrational,Ã® Garcia said about people who commit hate crimes.
Ryan Millikin, a student at Hillsborough Community College, said that after he told his mother he was homosexual, she feared that he would be harmed.
Ã¬My momÃs No. 1 fear when I told her I was gay was that sheÃd get a call from the police or hospital saying I had been beaten to death just because I was gay,Ã® Millikin said.
Jack Moore, a USF professor for the English and American studies department, said ScarpoÃs film will teach students about the reality of hate.
Ã¬(Because) education is based upon fact,Ã® Moore said. Ã¬ItÃs based on realities.Ã®
Moore said everyone has a different perspective, and some people are sensitive to what they believe to be true.
Ã¬Actions are taken out of sheer emotional response,Ã® Moore said. Ã¬I think education can teach us the reality of similarities between people.Ã®