Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Where Is Our Society Headed?

Perhaps this is my incurable optimism speaking, but I really believe human existence has improved throughout history and shows every sign it will continue to do so.

Consider crime: sure, it has increased--reported crime, that is. There was a time when child abuse was not even against the law. The first child abuse case was prosecuted as an animal cruelty case.

Consider the environment. Historically, we have leeched the Earth of all of her resources to the best of our ability without restraint. The only difference between developed and undeveloped societies was the ability, not the intention. I think mankind has learned its lesson. The world is so much cleaner than it was 100 years ago, and people have only begun to truly care. Green is not just the new black; it's a massive revolution in the way we operate our daily lives, in our values and priorities. I see a bright future for our planet, with technology's biggest gift to us being the convenience of modern life with no geo-impact.

Even teenagers. Sure, they suck. They always have--people were complaining about them in ancient Greek times ,and it was the exact same bad attitude, lack of respect for others, and lack of manners we whine about now. No change. I'm sure they had teenaged pregnancy and drug abuse then, too. These are timeless issues that plague the leisure classes of every society and era. Except--oops--now we are all leisure class, at least in the United States.

We are the most comfortable, safest, and best educated generation on Earth. There is no reason to think this upward trend, which has continued for several centuries now, will not continue. Our biggest problems will be managing the accoutrements of modern life and dealing with economic and health problems that plague those final decades we didn't use to have. Waah.