When the Society is Becoming Worse
1. When children take the responsibilities of adults.
Children should be allowed to act and enjoy as children. In this way, they would understand that the world has a sort of order and hierarchy. This is not to say in absolute terms that authority is always acceptable. However, children should have a concept of order. Let them see that by exempting them from taking the major responsibilities of adults. Let them learn the concept of responsibilities and consequences, but give them the leeway to make mistakes without major repercussions in their lives. Should they rebel or disagree with the structure they see in the society, give them that opportunity. They can reflect, make mistakes but with access to advices and guidance given by adults.
2. When adults complain like toddlers, never satisfied with anything given to them.
This is something I saw seldom in the Philippines. It is either hidden or rare, but as soon as I integrated myself socially in Norway, I realize this is more common than I thought. Everyone can complain regardless of age, reason or time. This is a good sign that democracy and freedom exists. However, I see some people abuse this. There is sort of feeling of entitlement. It is like demanding things to be as they want, whether it is possible or reasonable enough. It is like toddlers with tantrums and their parents stressed to appease them in anyway toddlers want. I do not blame them should they have the resources, reason and capacity to complain. But my point is if people lack the ability to criticize oneself, tolerate mediocrity at times, and be reasonable enough based on the situation; it is a matter of time we deplete the world's resources, as well as the patience, empathy and understanding every person has in them.
3. When adolescents and young adults think they have enough experience to decide over others.
Little knowledge is dangerous, and the best teacher will always be experience. These two statements should be inculcated in the minds of young individuals. This is not to say that no young person is better than anyone older than him or her. The emphasis is on the power of time and experience. Should everyone take their experiences seriously, all adults should have been wise and well-reflected in life. However, this is not the case in reality. Nonetheless, the young should be given the opportunity to learn from experience, but should be humble enough to say that they do have limitations as well, such that the capacity to decide over others will also be limited. It is acceptable to ask for advice, and rude not to admit our imperfections and inexperience.
4. When money and power dictates credibility over competence and skills.
Corruption makes the social dynamics more complex. The society functions collectively such that there are tasks needed to accomplish specifically by qualified individuals for the society to optimally maximize the benefits for all. Should a less qualified person do a task, optimal advantage is also lessened. This negative change may not be very significant and noticeable, but with corruption, these changes become obvious and amplified. The right people do not get the opportunity to contribute to the society maximally, while the society have to tolerate mediocrity and even incompetence. Worse, the society needs to just accept these things as part of reality.
5. When the rich thinks they are entitled to protect their space from strangers including those who are in need.
This is very evident in world politics. In ancient times, kingdoms wage war with another to protect its interests, as well as to gain more power and wealth to prevent others from challenging them. In period of colonization, this kind of war was upgraded to exploit others to keep power within the circle of the rich, no matter what it takes. Today, we see that in refugees, immigrants and even racial divide among people. We should be reminded that we humans shares same traits that make us human. There is no Human Group Number 1 or 2 or worse 3. We differ but that diversity should be embraced wholeheartedly. There is no better race, primarily because our comparisons are flawed, biased and relative. What is better for one, can not be universally-acceptable to everyone.
Greed and egoism are perhaps innate in human beings. We protect what we possess and aim for more for ourselves. Sometimes, we forget that we are just one of billions of individuals. No matter how we try, there will always be better than us. They exists today or will exist tomorrow.
Moreover, we have to acknowledge that there are vulnerable groups of people who are in need. They should never be exploited in any way. The poor and vulnerable next to you might be the person richer or better than you in the future. You might experience the things you have done to others, and the bad cycle never stops. The society will never be better in this way. We should all do everything to stop the cycle from repeating itself.
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