are we better or worse than what we were? (1 Viewer)

Are we better or worse off as a society than when you were a kid?

  • Better off

    Votes: 4 80.0%
  • Worse off

    Votes: 1 20.0%

  • Total voters
    5

Libre

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What do you think?
Are we, as a society, better off or worse off than we were when you were a child?
I know that as a child, you can't evaluate things like social injustice or wealth inequality - so I know the question is a little skewed.
But what is your impression?

Here are some of my own:

Issues regarding the health of the Earth: MUCH MUCH WORSE!
Except, with the passage of clean air laws and environmental regulations on waste, etc, we may be better in some areas. Like, I think the Hudson River is cleaner now than 30 years ago. But on a worldwide level, let’s face it, we're going down the tubes. Climate change, the bees, the frogs, the ice caps, the oceans. And like, right - we're going to curb our wasteful ways before it's too late. Sure, we'll sacrifice short term economic benefits in favor of the long term health of the Earth before it's too late. Wake up people, it's already too late.

Social Justice: MUCH MUCH BETTER! That is, unless you're a white protestant male heterosexual. But for everyone else - other religions, races, sexes, gender orientation - what progress we've made! But it still sucks for Blacks, Latinos, Muslims, and the refugees in Europe. But we're still better than we were. The KKK hasn't held any publicized any events lately, like bake sales or lynchings.

Family Values: Oy. Having children out of wedlock is normal today. Marriage is for old fuddy-duddies I guess.

Courtesy and manners: Oy.

Political Correctness: I have my own take on PC and unlike 99% of the opinions I hear about it, I think it's a good thing to avoid using crass and offensive terms. So if being "politically correct" means you temper your statements so that they don't unnecessarily exclude groups or insult individuals you don't like or haven't thought much about, then I think it's a good thing.


Technology: Obviously we were babes in the woods in the '50s compared with where we are now, technologically. This would include all medical advances, advances in physics, biology - wait - why am I explaining what I mean by technology to you? As though you're unfamiliar with the term.

These are just a few of the areas we could talk about.
By all means, if you think of anything, post it here and tell me if we're better off or worse off than when you were a kid. Unless you're a kid now. But then, you probably clicked away from reading this to something much more thought provoking – like the post about what Justin Bieber thinks about his male organ.
 
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Libre

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It's Yiddish.
Oy is short for oy vey which is short for oy veyz mir.
Oy is also short for oy gevalt.
It's an expression of dismay or disgust.
You see?
 

Frothingslosh

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I believe it's also British slang for 'HEY!'. (or at least Oi is - I've heard that quite a bit on vent/TS)
 

Alc

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I figure your background, plus where and when you were a kid will greatly affect your views on this, so, just for reference, I'm white and grew up in the UK in the '70s.

Better

  • Medical care - doesn't need an explanation, really
  • Availability of entertainment - remember the days of 'It was on last night? Oh well, maybe they'll repeat it next year'.
  • Information access and speed - not always quality, but in some cases that's also true - look at this site
  • Travel - I clearly remember going to Spain for a week was somewhat glamorous. Now? There aren't many places you can't easily get to, if you so desire.
  • Equal rights - I don't think anyone can really argue that minorities today are worse off than thirty years ago, even if things are a long way from perfect
Worse

  • Manners - I still find it surprising and disappointing if I hold a door for someone, male or female, and don't at least get a thank you. I'd lump internet comments in with this. Perhaps there were always these ignorant, ill-educated, racist, sexist people out there and I was just lucky enough not to ever hear their opinions
  • Crime - maybe I was just ignorant of it as a child, and perhaps the fact that the press loves to blow things out of proportion is also a factor, but it feels like crime is worse now. Especially violent crime and "mass" murders
  • Celebrity culture - Yes, there have always been famous people and we, as a society, have always paid an interest in their social/sex lives. These days, it does feel like it's gotten out of hand.
  • Compensation - 'I fell over, give me some money' I'm so sick of people looking for cash for every stupid thing they do that causes them hardship. They, and the leeches that work to perpetuate the problem, could all be euthanized as far as I'm concerned.
  • Forced apologies - lately, everyone seems to be apologising for everything. In almost all cases, it comes across as forced, insincere and meaningless to both the recipient and the one doing it.
    • You used a racist slur? If that's how you think, then you're not sorry, so don't apologise. You showed your true self and now people know what you're like, live with it. People who agree d with it will still agree,, people who didn't won't.
    • Your ancestors did something bad? Why are you saying sorry? It happened waaaaay before you were born.
    • You were caught out doing something wrong? You're only sorry you got caught. Suck it up, you wimp.
    • Your country did something over which you had absolutely no say or control? Why the f*ck are YOU apologizing?
 

ColinEssex

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Why is it necessary to point out you are white? That indicates that you think something different for non whites.

Col
 

Frothingslosh

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As a rule, people are neither better nor worse than what they always have been - namely that the vast majority of humanity would happily sell your body parts for spare change if they could get away with it.

Crime is actually dropping, both world-wide and in developed countries, despite what Faux News tells right-wing Americans. The illusion that it isn't has nothing to do with an increase in lawlessness and everything to do with the rise of the 24 hour news cycle, instant world-wide communications, and shock value being the most important part of any news story.

Celebrity culture? Trust me - look back through old magazines and newspapers, and you'll see people were just as obsessed back then. it's just easier to scratch that itch now thanks to the Web.

Compensation? People have always worked primarily for money. There's a reason Carnegie hired Pinkerton to straight-up kill would-be union organizers when they tried to shut down one of his mills, and it wasn't because he was such a philanthropist.

Forced apologies may be on the rise, again, because instead of your local politicians being the only ones to find out your gaffe, now the whole world knows within seconds, and the PR ramifications can be a nightmare.
 

Alc

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Why is it necessary to point out you are white? That indicates that you think something different for non whites.

Col
Yes, that's right. I think society has changed a lot more for black people in the UK than it has for white, since I was a child. I stated that in an attempt to clarify that my experiences were based on growing up as part of (arguably) the more privileged section of society.
 

Alc

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Compensation? People have always worked primarily for money. There's a reason Carnegie hired Pinkerton to straight-up kill would-be union organizers when they tried to shut down one of his mills, and it wasn't because he was such a philanthropist.
I wasn't talking about earning money, I was talking about people expecting cash for nothing. When I was a child, if you put something hot in your mouth or tripped over a paving stone, you were stupid or careless. You kept your mouth shut as it was your fault and you should have had common sense enough not to do it. Nowadays, it's "who can I blame and ask for money?".
 

Frothingslosh

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I wasn't talking about earning money, I was talking about people expecting cash for nothing. When I was a child, if you put something hot in your mouth or tripped over a paving stone, you were stupid or careless. You kept your mouth shut as it was your fault and you should have had common sense enough not to do it. Nowadays, it's "who can I blame and ask for money?".

Honestly, people have always been like that, too. Ever heard of snake oil salesmen? Or the collected wisdom of P.T. Barnum? Or the idea of the Dole (which was already around in England in Victorian times)? Or any number of kings, princes, counts, dukes, barons, and other assorted nobles throughout the millennia? Getting money without expending effort has been a goal of more than a few people throughout history, both before and after the advent of common law and lawyers/barristers/solicitors.
 

Libre

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As a rule, people are neither better nor worse than what they always have been - namely that the vast majority of humanity would happily sell your body parts for spare change if they could get away with it.

Crime is actually dropping, both world-wide and in developed countries, despite what Faux News tells right-wing Americans. The illusion that it isn't has nothing to do with an increase in lawlessness and everything to do with the rise of the 24 hour news cycle, instant world-wide communications, and shock value being the most important part of any news story.

Celebrity culture? Trust me - look back through old magazines and newspapers, and you'll see people were just as obsessed back then. it's just easier to scratch that itch now thanks to the Web.

Compensation? People have always worked primarily for money. There's a reason Carnegie hired Pinkerton to straight-up kill would-be union organizers when they tried to shut down one of his mills, and it wasn't because he was such a philanthropist.

Forced apologies may be on the rise, again, because instead of your local politicians being the only ones to find out your gaffe, now the whole world knows within seconds, and the PR ramifications can be a nightmare.
While I agree with most of this, there is the fact that society does change.
Rats raised in overcrowded and impoverished (for a rat) conditions don't develop at the same rate or to the same degree as rats raised in enriched environments. Studies show that the same applies to humans - and it doesn't take a brain surgeon (hmmm, thinking Ben Carson - make that a rocket scientist) to understand that early education, access to medical services, proper nutrition, stable home life - all these do produce better adjusted, brighter, and healthier children and subsequently, adults. Over time, this should produce better living for all. But it doesn't seem to work out that way, does it? Or maybe it does, after all. Hard to compare these things, without specific metrics and unbiased data - very hard to come by and are still misleading in any case.
 

Frothingslosh

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Well, to be fair, life spans are increasing and disease rates decreasing overall. There are certainly exceptions, but overall, quality of life is mostly increasing, if slowly. Hell, vaccination alone is almost miraculous in what it's done for us - after all, how many of us first-worlders know anyone who has had mumps or polio in the last 50 years? And how many people in the world today have EVER had smallpox?

So I guess I would have to amend my position to 'improving, but slowly' after comparing the above to the social issues I mentioned in my first post.
 

Knildon

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Froth,
I agree with your response but unfortunately there was a minor epidemic of mumps in the National Hockey League last year. Don't know why but it did happen. I also heard, this year, about an outbreak somewhere in the western US.
Knildon
 

Frothingslosh

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Yeah, that was why I phrased it the way I did. Thanks to the anti-vaxxers, Mumps, Measles, Rubella, and a number of other easily-preventable diseases are reappearing in the States. I'm waiting to see what they'll do when the first new case of polio appears here.

If there really is a Hell, I really hope there's a spot reserved for Andrew Wakefield.
 

Alc

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Yeah, that was why I phrased it the way I did. Thanks to the anti-vaxxers, Mumps, Measles, Rubella, and a number of other easily-preventable diseases are reappearing in the States. I'm waiting to see what they'll do when the first new case of polio appears here.
If it happens, it will be somehow unrelated to the anti-vaccine movement, I'm sure.
 

Frothingslosh

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If it happens, it will be somehow unrelated to the anti-vaccine movement, I'm sure.

The first case? Perhaps - it's awfully rare anywhere these days.

If it shows up and starts spreading, however, that's entirely on them. Unlike smallpox, polio vaccines are still in use.
 

Alc

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The first case? Perhaps - it's awfully rare anywhere these days.

If it shows up and starts spreading, however, that's entirely on them. Unlike smallpox, polio vaccines are still in use.
Sorry, I was being facetious. It will DEFINITELY be down to those idiots, it will just not be spun that way in the media.
 

Frothingslosh

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Sorry, I was being facetious. It will DEFINITELY be down to those idiots, it will just not be spun that way in the media.

lol Aaaand once again we inadvertently prove that English needs sarcasm punctuation. :D
 

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