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Here's why people love to hate on do-gooders

ANI | Updated: Jul 22, 2018 19:03 IST

Washington D.C. [USA] July 22 (ANI): Turns out, sometimes, it doesn't pay to be a do-gooder.
According to a new study by the University of Guelph, cooperative and generous people can attract hatred and social punishment, especially in competitive circumstances.
Psychology professor Pat Barclay said, "Most of the time we like the cooperators, the good guys. We like it when the bad guys get their comeuppance, and when non-cooperators are punished."
He added, "But some of the time, cooperators are the ones that get punished. People will hate on the really good guys. This pattern has been found in every culture in which it has been looked at."
The study, conducted by Barclay and undergraduate student Aleta Pleasant found that cooperative behaviour attracted punishment most often in groups whose members compete with each other.
Being suspicious, jealous or hostile toward those who seem better or nicer or holier than us appears to run deep in the psychological makeup of humans, Barclay said.
The same social dynamic may affect actions to protect the environment, which requires acting both individually and cooperatively for the good of all.
"People who do nothing for the environmental risk damaging their reputation, and may instead choose to attack the motives of environmentalists," he added.
It is a way of bringing those people back down and stopping them from looking better than one in their attempts to protect the environment or address social inequality.
The full findings are present in the journal - Psychological Science. (ANI)