Every morning I scan the ABC Online news, and what I’m seeing just lately makes me wonder whether we are teetering on the brink of collapse. Is the end, as Armageddonists like to tell us, nigh? Is the downfall of our civilisation at hand?
I often ignore the grim ‘big’ news about wars, pirates, suicide bombers, political wrangles, terrorist trials, climate change and the global financial crisis. That’s the stuff of despair – or so I thought. All that is big stuff on the global stage – but closer to home I’m seeing individual horrors and tragedies that are unrelated to international relations; acts of evil perpetrated by ordinary people in small towns and suburbs, and ‘little’ people flouting the law because they feel the fulfilment of their desires is greater than the safety or security of society as a whole. Like those dickheads who smash bottles just for fun (see last Friday's rant).
It’s the little manifestations of evil that seem to point more and more to a breakdown of society. Like these:
http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/11/25/2753618.htm - Former bank boss jailed for hanging dog. (What kind of creep would do such a thing?)
http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/11/26/2753815.htm - Children shot while playing in park. (By a grown-up. The news didn’t say whether he knew the kids – but in any case, who uses little kids for target practice?)
http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/11/26/2753893.htm?section=justin – Teen girls spit, steal and punch in rampage. (16 and 17 years old…. Nice girls…)
The breakdown of society’s fabric – the crack in the veneer of civilisation – is it increasing, or just increasingly being reported? Criminals of both genders are getting younger, random acts of senseless violence seem to be multiplying, and humanity seems to be getting crazier at every level.
Stop the world, I want to get off!