Boston Marathon Explosions And Modern Society

I don’t have any special insights or exclusive information regarding the two explosions near the finish line of the Boston Marathon today, but what I can say is this — we are not living in a more violent time. We are not witnessing a societal free fall of morals and values. The human race is not degenerating into a vengeful, hateful species with no hope for the future. Chance are this was the work of one person, but I’ll leave that for the authorities to sort out. Even if it was the work of more than one person, they do not represent the rest of us.

I’ve written about this before, but I’ll say it again — crime is down in America. There might be greater instances of specific types of events like mass-shootings, but in fact violent crimes are way down from 20 and 30 years ago. Violent crime in general is down around the globe. I know you think things are worse now than ever, but I have a sneaking suspicion that human beings have felt this throughout history. We always believe the time we are on this earth is somehow more important, more profound, than that of previous generations. We believe that we are living during the pinnacle of society and all of the positives and negatives that brings to the table. Add into the mix 24/7 news and social media, and we are never unplugged. We learn about these events as they happen. With that constant bombardment, I guess you could be excused if you believe we are living in the most violent time in human history; but we are not.

Today’s tragedy, origin currently unknown, speaks to the evil that mankind is capable of. All of the people rushing to aid the wounded without concern for their own safety represents just the opposite. They show that human beings as a whole are not degenerating into a cesspool of hatred. They show that many people are incredibly selfless in the aftermath of a tragic event.

To say today’s horrible events in Boston are representative of all society is to do a great disservice to all the good men and women who try to do their best each day and contribute to this great social experiment.

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Human Interest

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  • Follow-up comment: If you think human beings are so bad now, name me a time in the past when they were considerably better? And I’m talking about the people in society that do harm to others. As I said in the article above, most people are good, doing their best to contribute to society. There will always be an element in society that intends to do harm. But this is true throughout human history. The only difference now is that a single person can inflict much more damage. But we should not confuse the damage that one person can inflict with the level of violence in society or the number of people willing to commit violent acts.