Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Tragedy, Most Definitely... Societal Failure, Even More So...

I've been glued to the television coverage of the tragic violence at Virginia Tech over the past few days. 
Some may call that a bit "sick", to be so engrossed in the media "hype" that has surrounded such a sad event.  
I cannot look away from it, it makes my heart and soul ache to think of the senseless deaths, not to mention the long-term effects on the families of those who died and the survivors. 
But it goes so far beyond this.  
My sadness and heart and soul ache are because of the failure of a society which I believe has fostered and allowed such events to occur through the disregarding of the individual, the denying of compassion and caring for each and every human being.  
The following link is to the News & Analysis page of the World Socialist Web Site's section titled "Social Breakdown: Violence in the US".  There you will find stories going back to 1998.  An excerpt from one follows:

"Alienation in social relations has reached new heights. What does this mean concretely? Individuals increasingly feel themselves cut off from their fellow beings and indeed perceive other people as alien and even hostile to them. What does it take to kill another person, or group of people, as happened in Oregon? The youth reportedly shot four bullets into the body of a fellow student lying at his feet. This must mean that he no longer recognized his victim as someone like him, as one of his kind. Without, of course, consciously intending to, official society has encouraged such mental states.

Every effort has been made to cultivate a soulless society governed entirely by money and profit, to eradicate the elementary concern one human being feels for another. Intellectual life, culture, the pursuit of knowledge for the benefit of mankind as a whole, are held in low esteem. Individualism, greed and ruthlessness are venerated. This has had a material impact on the quality of human relationships.

Both for ideological and fiscal reasons, help is more and more denied those in emotional need. Services are cut, or even proclaimed unnecessary. Family life is strained, in many cases, by the need to juggle two or three jobs. The individual young person is often on his or her own. For the adolescent, undergoing, under the best of conditions, a difficult physical and psychological transition, every social tension is exacerbated."

Please read the articles... hopefully you will see that I mean....

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