We live in a fast paced consumer society, where we can get virtually anything we want at any time and a world of information at our fingertips. We work long hours, potentially the longest we’ve ever worked in a week and have to work for a longer time to get the benefits of our pension.
Technology is fantastic as it opens such opportunities to our lives. We can now be connected to appliances in our own homes, see our mail from anywhere with an internet connection and talk to our friends online anywhere in the world at any time.
News travels faster than ever before, political messages everywhere informing and manipulating us in an instant, seeing events unfold in live time.
It’s an amazing time to be alive.
This all comes at a price though. And it appears that price is common sense and humanity.
We’ve lost the art of simple conversation, of understanding others and most of all, listening. We’ve become a generation of broadcasters, beaming our thoughts and strong opinions for the world to see, then setting the battle lines for a fight when someone disagrees.
We’ve lost what it is to be human, to have compassion and understanding, reacting to the world in either an outpouring of emotion or of robotic selfishness. In dealing with the big issues of the day, we offer simplistic solutions to complex situations and forget the human in the scenario, sometimes even dehumanising great swathes of the population in the process.
I’m a firm believer that if you treat people harshly, even inhumanely, you get exactly that in return: harsh and inhumane behaviour. We have a situation in our world where the politics of division have brought about hate and fear, causing polarised views and an upswing in hate speech and hate crimes.
If you are not sure, just log into social media and look at discussions relating to news items on immigration, government spending or religion and watch the touch paper being set alight. No understanding, no exploration of views, just set phasers to kill and it’s a free for all.
We always seem to look to extremes, when these account for a very small percentage of the issue at hand. Take welfare cheats, the real percentage of those defrauding the system is low, like 1 to 2 percent of all claimants. Yet we follow the narrative that somehow most people on benefits are cheating the system. Then there is the hot button of terrorism, which security services have mooted in the UK there are c. 2000 people who are being actively monitored, out of a population of c. 60 million, which shows in percentage terms a very small group but we vilify a much larger group of people or even countries.
I believe in live and let live, as long as people are not harming others or breaking the law, why then should we bother worrying about how others live their lives? This applies to everyone, not just one group. A bit of understanding is great and goes a long way, but just leaving others alone, as well as being left alone, would help us concentrate on important things in our worlds.
In this age of fast lane living, let’s put the human back into the mix and respect the right to hold an opposing view, to live life the way the individual wants. In other words, let’s stop screwing with each other and get on with living.
We’re not here for a long time and we might as well enjoy it for however long it lasts, while trying not screw it up for future generations. If there is a tenet in life to try and live to, it is this: try not to be a twat.
Have a great weekend folks and be kind to yourself, as well as others.