I stand in my browning, weed-infested yard and glare across the street at my neighbor’s vibrant green, perfectly manicured lawn. That’s not fair! Why is the grass always greener on the other side?
For those of you who didn’t realize it, this is not the reality of the situation – this is an expression about our attitudes and perceptions. It’s not that things are always better for others – it’s about the unhappiness (and other dangers) that come from wanting what others have instead of focusing on your own blessings (your stuff, for those of you offended by theistic references.)
Was the Lufthansa copilot another one who just thought he wasn’t happy, so he was going to take everyone down with him? Bringing everyone else down doesn’t raise you. It also shows a selfish disregard for others.
Aurora. Newtown. Boston. Columbine.
It’s not guns, or knives, or airplanes that kill – it’s people. Selfish, self-centered, inconsiderate, empathically challenged sociopaths, who really just need the slightest excuse to rain their own special brand of hell on everyone else.
I didn’t get the toy I wanted. I don’t like what you said. I don’t have enough money. I’m not famous. I didn’t win. I don’t like the way you looked at me. Why do you have more friends than I do? The world’s not fair!
No, the world isn’t “fair”, if what we mean is everyone gets the same equality of outcome. It was never meant to be that way.
People will argue that this is mental illness we’re dealing with. Maybe, but I believe that even the majority of mentally ill people still operate within certain societal parameters. You might be suicidal, but that suicide doesn’t have to morph into the inconsiderate homicide of others. Unless the underpinning morals and the ability to feel the pain of others have been removed – then, all the perpetrators see and care about is what it does to themselves when they crash.
I think we’re dealing with an epidemic of selfishness. Aside from the more shocking examples of mass killings that grip the headlines, we have the more mundane. People use the government to get themselves “free stuff” by stealing it from their neighbors in the present, and their own children and grandchildren in the future.
How has this happened? We may never know, but as a society we have worked hard to reduce the impact of religion and faith from the public square (which is where most of our morals come from – you don’t have to be a believer to reap the benefits of a moral society.) We have focused on the individual as the center of his own universe and thus the keeper of his own rules for right and wrong. We’ve proclaimed that it’s okay to kill our babies if they are deemed an inconvenience. We place such a value on the almighty EGO and its “right” to not be offended that we can’t have standards, or open competition, or an honest conversation.
Don’t get me wrong – a certain amount of selfishness is necessary for everyone – otherwise an individual would starve (literally and figuratively.) But as with everything else, the danger is in taking things to extremes – we each need to give at least some portion of our thoughts to others, instead of making it ALL ABOUT ME.
This is week two of “Riding the Devil” as our couponed feature - here’s the smashwords.com link: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/273869?ref=notimetothink
Use coupon code KD74Q to save 50% off the list price at check out at smashwords. The coupon will be good through Monday, April 6th. Enjoy!
William Mangieri’s writing can be found in many places, such as:
- His Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B008O8CBDY
- Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/william-mangieri?store=book&keyword=william+mangieri
- Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/NoTimeToThink
- Createspace: https://www.createspace.com/pub/simplesitesearch.search.do?sitesearch_query=william+mangieri&sitesearch_type=STORE
Connect with him on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/NoTimeToThink
Or on his goodreads author page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6893616.William_Mangieri