Tag Archives: world

Generation Huh?

I miss empiricism. I miss critical thinking. These are elements of logic and rational thought that are sorely missing in our society.

I plan on discussing many of these issues in detail in other posts. For now I want to focus on a recent example involving a response to one of my posts on a different website.

I had posted a review of our current apartment complex on a ratings website. My review is summed up in the bullet points in this post. One of the people who responded based their response on so many assumptions the only way to describe it is that they pretty much fictionalized my review.

First off, the person described me as suffering from “entitlemntitis.” My first reaction to this word was “what kind of wing-nut buzzword is that?” The only thing I can figure is that this is a made up “disorder” used to described people who have the nerve to demand fair treatment. Of course I’m biased in my description. It was obvious from the response that the person meant that it’s people who think they’re entitled to everything and throw “a page long temper tantrum” if they don’t get it. (Yes, the poster actually used the phrase in quotes).

What’s interesting to me is the “entitlements” that the responder specifically highlighted in the response: disabled parking and non-English speakers. I abhor political correctness to the point that we even embrace the worst ills of our communities, but the disabled and people who can’t speak English? Given the current political climate and a growing faction of “learn the language or leave” mentality, treating not speaking English as a detriment can be unfortunately expected (I’ll address in another post). But disabilities? Really? I’m taking poetic license here, just like the poster did with “entitlemntitis” – have we’ve gotten to the point in society where we figuratively kick disabled people to the side and say, “It’s unfair if you don’t have to travel as far as me even if you’re not as mobile?”

What the hell? Now, granted, I could be a lot worse off than other people. I thankfully do not have to use a wheelchair or cane (yet), but because of my condition I am in near-constant pain. Although I’m much younger, more than one doctor has told me that I have the back of someone in their 60’s. Because of this, doctors…medical professionals…more than ONE have told me not to exercise. When was the last time you heard a doctor say that? The reason for this is because if I injure my back now, it’s more than likely that I will end up in a wheelchair.

I did not post this in my review, because well, I didn’t think going into that much detail was necessary. Medical issues tend to be private. However, the person who responded made some assumptions and suggested that I “begged” my doctor for the disability placard so that both me and my husband could have good parking spots because I was the type of person who would exploit anyone or any situation to get what I wanted.

Again, what the hell? Am I missing something? Do you all really get that from my post on our apartment woes? Please comment and tell me if this is the case and I should have been more clear/detailed in what I wrote.

And just for further clarity, my husband and I never both got good parking spots. I had a disabled spot and my husband continued to search for available parking outside in the first-come-first-serve area.  The issue with Shorewood was always them blocking disabled spots inside the garage, not that they wouldn’t give two premium spots. Also, once my back started showing improvement and I was in less pain (meaning I could walk farther without the lower half of my body going numb), I stopped parking in the disabled spots so that others who were less mobile could have them.

Now, just with the piece on my mobility issues, see how posting an opinion based on assumptions at worst – anecdotal evidence at best – can be used to twist people’s perspectives in such a way that people start believing something that is, well, just not correct?

Are people okay with basing opinions on fallacy? This anecdotal evidence would say yes, but this is something that I’ve seen on countless occasions. Seeing this behavior time and again makes me feel like we’re dealing with a society full of people from what I’m beginning to call “Generation Huh?” We had Generation X…then came Generation Why?….it seems to be that a better description is “Generation Huh?” because people don’t even ask “why” that much anymore. Few people question things to gain further understanding. Instead, they fly off the handle based on one piece of information.

Is it too much to ask that people seek out facts and/or information before forming any opinions or theories? Sadly, the answer to this seems to be yes. It’s weird. With technology we have access to more information and the ability to interact with more people than ever before, yet many do not use it to improve their perspectives or world views. Instead it’s as if  technology – with everything at our fingertips – has encouraged us to embrace instant gratification to the point that unless the information is provided to us, we can’t possibly be bothered to search for it ourselves.

Great times and sad times, y’all.

Tears for Boston – Dig Deep for the Why

As I’m reading some US and international news stories about what happened today, Bloomberg made a comment that I hope would cause some people to question things.

Bloomberg said that security was being stepped in NY’s “strategic locations and critical infrastructure, including our subways.”

Strategic locations. Critical infrastructure. These have been the historical targets of terrorist groups, international groups in particular. So why target the Boston marathon? Probably in hopes of high mortality, which is horrifying in and of itself. What else? People who do these terrifying things – whether you’re talking Al Qaeda or Timothy McVeigh – target areas for a specific purpose, to send a particular message or to enact a symbolic form of revenge against perceived wrong-doers.

Again, why the Boston marathon? Like I told my husband – in some ways, a terrorist attack is even more terrifying if we never figure out WHO or WHY. Our level of fear can be kicked up to considering EVERYONE a suspect and EVERY LOCATION a potential target.

I’m in tears because of the pain caused. And I hope that reason guides us in the upcoming weeks so that we don’t do anything rash.

Olympics and the good old days

Everyone is talking about the Olympics. At least it seems like everyone is. Many posts on various social media are all about Olympic athletes and different sports.

I have to admit, I’m not following the Olympics this time around and I didn’t follow them much in years before. But I must say that even the hype surrounding the festivities have made me yearn for the good old days.

Like many people, I played sports when I was younger. My main pastimes were softball, basketball and soccer. When I could find time, I also liked to play volleyball and even attempted to play tennis (rather badly I might add). It was FUN. I made lots of friends, got lots of exercise, learned lessons about working in a team and embraced the ecstacy of victory and the huge disappointment of defeat. One of the greatest lessons that a young person can learn is that becoming adept at dealing with winning and losing in a healthy manner.

Nowadays many young people spend all of their time playing video games, texting and playing on the computer – the fact that I’m on a computer is not lost on me. I’m not suggesting that these are necessarily bad things as technology has driven the changes that we see in our world today, and in many ways that same technology runs our world. Without intimate knowledge of it many of us, including our future leaders, would be lost. What is missing is the piece that fills the gap where young people can learn those valuable lessons that we learned when we were younger.

These are thoughts that often plague my mind. Every time there is news of a shooting, such as the recent one in Aurora, Colorado, I have to wonder where we went wrong in teaching our kids how to deal with others in good times and bad. Much emphasis is put on bullying today. Don’t get me wrong. I absolutely feel that bullying is wrong – but I was also bullied as a child and somehow made it through as did many of my contemporaries.

What does this have to do with sports? In all of the lessons that I learned, subtle messages included things don’t always go the way I want and when I have an adversary, what is I can do to improve my performance to best them. Are these still lessons that our young people learn in a world where if you’re losing the game you can just go to the last save spot and start over?

I try to remind myself of these things with my daughter. Instead of letting her watch television and play video games all of the time, I encourage her to go outside and play, be involved in sports and just as important (if not MORE important) READ A BOOK.

If you don’t like what you see in the world, the first step is changing yourself and what happens in your home – and always be willing to help others do the same – so our kids can look back on the old days and call them good, too.