Maybe it is just Western Civilization... maybe it is just United States... in the end, all I know is that compassion and community are surely dying. Common decency is no longer common. Mr. Virginia Tech shooter, why did you first shoot 50+ other people before killing yourself. Surely it would be much kinder to have just gone someplace quiet and ended your life, instead of taking so many with you. My thoughts and prayers go out to all those affected by this horrendous act.
Seems many times my reading always get related to what is going on in the real world. The latest example is Friday by R.A.H. The plot of the story is not important, but at one point in the book, it creates a world of anarchy created by a group of terrorist who seek to remove the world's corrupt which happen to be in power. One of the rotating main characters states they built their bomb shelter not for fear of an atomic bomb, but in fear of the day when social disorder occurs, based on the logic that there was a time when people could go outside and walk at night without fear of mugging or rape and that you could leave your door unlocked without having your life stolen away. Slowly society got worse and worse and that the inevitable conclusion would be mob rule. It seems that this self first attitude of the solution, could be a part of the problem as well. Sigh.
One other thing to mention on a related note is that we don't seem to care about how we interact with those around us as much as how it impacts us. Yesterday on my train ride home someone on the train took a cell phone call. Now the immediate portion of this you can probably already see is that this individual talked very loudly on the train without care for anyone else. He was so involved in his discussion of how he was created a RPG character with shapeshifting, regenerative properties over a crappy cell signal (he repeated regenerative over 15 times) that he failed to realize that the entire ... ENTIRE train car could care less about this conversation (don't get me started on the lady who once sat across from me taking to her lover about what he was wearing at that time). This only got worse because of the passive aggressive nature of our society. I was slightly annoyed but in the end, I blocked it out and continued to read my book. Others were not so tolerant of this anti-social behavior and mocked this individual for "being a nerd and that is just how 'those' people are". As a nerd/geek/etc, I am offended by how intolerant the other people are with they way they are applying this label. The proper way would have been to ask this individual to not shout at the top of his lungs or to save his RPG character discussion to place where it would not be subject to poor cell reception. Instead, we ignore this behavior and instead retaliate with equally bad behavior.