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I am scared of the kind of society we are becoming?

(336 Posts)
brasty Wed 29-Mar-17 11:10:23

More and more as a society we seem to be losing empathy for people who are struggling. From those on benefits, to those in overcrowded houses, to disabled and ill people. If individuals think they would not find themselves in that situation, then any empathy seems to disappear.

Not everyone has the same personal resources. Some people are struggling just to get through every day and so eating healthily is not a priority. It is not accident that those with severe mental health problems tend to have worse physical health and higher levels of harmful behavior such as smoking.

Being chronically disabled is shit and makes life much much harder than those who have never experienced it realise. And yes someone may be "lucky" to have social housing, but how about having some empathy if they are struggling in an overcrowded house.

It scares me. This lack of empathy has real affects, Cuts are being made to benefits for disabled people, only because most people simply don't care enough.

egosumquisum1 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:14:35

I was thinking about this. There are 6 - 7 billion people on this world all living together. I wonder how we would explain how we do this and how it's organised to any alien visitors who asked us how we do it.

We have empathy for people in our country, our little group, but don't really know much about groups elsewhere.

Is it a dog eat dog world we want to live in or a world where we all work together for the greater good?

That probably doesn't answer your question - but I do think we are becoming more individualistic and a society that is like that is not one I would like to live in.

ClaudiaApfelstrudel Wed 29-Mar-17 11:15:18

yes I can see the same patterns you describe their OP. I'm very worried about where this is going too. We must remember though that previous generations did not have it easy either. In some ways we have the better of a huge variety of explotative and abusive societies throughout history.

BrieAndChilli Wed 29-Mar-17 11:21:49

I think there was only probably a couple or so decades where people cared about everyone else.
Before then there were workhouses, slums and disabled were sent off put the way.
There was a golden age after the war when so many people had lost people that society came together to look after those less fortunate.
I think now as we are losing the collective memory of the war that we are returning to how it was before - everyone for themselves

malificent7 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:23:08


PinkFlamingo545 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:29:15

Is this thread a joke??

losing empathy for people who are struggling

If so, please can you explain the huge numbers of people we have recently let into the UK, that are from war zones? These helping hands are often to the neglect of our own, our own people will still be homeless etc - but we house refugees because we have HUGE empathy for other people - just not our own.

PinkFlamingo545 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:32:20

We have empathy for people in our country, our little group, but don't really know much about groups elsewhere

I think in reality it is quite the opposite, we are more than happy and willing to lend a hand to other ethnic groups, look at comic relief and my post above about refugees, we have HUGE empathy for other countries far and wide

However when it comes to our own, we don't feel that same compassion, we feel judgemental

Somehow it has become the norm for us to neglect our own, in favour of helping others. Anything else, makes you a racist or any other horrible name

egosumquisum1 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:32:20

please can you explain the huge numbers of people we have recently let into the UK, that are from war zones

Did you see the reaction from the DM to the refugee crisis?

YouKnowNothingJS Wed 29-Mar-17 11:32:26

Becoming? At which point in time were we all holding hands and at peace?

makeourfuture Wed 29-Mar-17 11:32:59

There was a golden age after the war when so many people had lost people that society came together to look after those less fortunate.

The thing about our position now is that we may not be able to recover from the sorts of mistakes we made in the past. Could we survive a true global conflict? We have built a house of cards.

PinkFlamingo545 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:33:38

Did you see the reaction from the DM to the refugee crisis?

Link me to what you speak of smile

SleepFreeZone Wed 29-Mar-17 11:34:47

I think it's a swing. We swung too far to the left and now we are too far to the right. I'm hoping for some equilibrium in the future.

PinkFlamingo545 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:35:31

I agree a true house of cards

Society is multi - divided massively - people have very little common denominator in the home ground any more - no such thing as pulling together with your neighbours - They may not even speak the same language

PinkFlamingo545 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:38:15

No doubt we have swung right, but as a result of years of left wing politic decisions now coming to fruition and people do not like what they have chosen now the reality has hit

It is all well and good voting to allow the country to become over populated, but when the reality hits and you can't get health care / housing / schools - and you have quite literally given away your kids future = it is not surprising that people are now waking up and smelling the coffee

It is way too late and massively short sighted that it took this long

Doyouwantabrew Wed 29-Mar-17 11:40:52

No I think people have always been as they ever were. Some have empathy and some don't.

I do think however that people are a bit fed up of people blaming their addictions on illness.

If you are obese it's usually not your glands or your genes you are generally a greedy lazy bugger.

If you drink too much you make it a lifestyle choice as is smoking and recreational drugs and betting. Your choice, your responsibility. Not the drinks companies or the betting shops or the cigarette manufacturers, just yours.

If you can't be arsed to cook and feed your kids decent food if you have 6 kids and expect everyone else to pay for them or get off your arse and work for a living it's your fault. Not societies it's yours.

Being disabled is clearly totally and utterly different and those people deserve every help.

makeourfuture Wed 29-Mar-17 11:43:52

Pink, I would imagine we are from opposite ends of the spectrum....but that so many people from all sides see that our predicament is delicate must mean something.

I often remember the phrase during the early days of the financial crisis that "the cash machines almost stopped working" and shiver. What would happen?

It is just not a matter that there would be perhaps a few days of inconvenience, maybe it would be, but if multiple banks had indeed failed, the knock-on effects could have been very nasty. The UK, for instance, at any moment, only has about three days' food banked up in transport hubs. We are in actuality about a week, at any given time, from chaos or marshal law.

MangoSplit Wed 29-Mar-17 11:47:50

I agree with Doyouwantabrew. Some people have empathy and some don't. I honestly don't think that has changed much over the past few years / decades / centuries, although at a time of economic hardship it may become more obvious as there is less to go around.

BeachyKeen Wed 29-Mar-17 11:48:48

I see it differently I guess. I think people have empathy, but it isn't unlimited.
In the old days, we didn't have instant international media updated 24/7, in a constant stream of horror and bad news. There isn't a day that goes by with out reports of starving, floods, war, abuses etc from all over the world.
Sooner or later, you have to decide where to direct your focus, and for most people, that will be to those nearest and dearest first.
I am a compassionate person, but I will always take care of mine first. It's my responsibility. I can't fix everything for everyone, but I can be responsible for me and mine.

egosumquisum1 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:49:57

I am a compassionate person, but I will always take care of mine first

If you can't take care of 'yours', who will?

unlimiteddilutingjuice Wed 29-Mar-17 11:51:10

I agree OP;
I was brought up on benefits and the first time anyone suggested I should be ashamed of that, I was well into my 20's and they were a nutso libertarian from the US.
They asked me if it was "moral" and I was dumbfounded.
It frightens me that those attitudes are completely common and mainstream now.

HateSummer Wed 29-Mar-17 11:51:48

I agree with Brie. What the world needs right now is a war to bring everyone together. This is what is happening. We're heading towards ww3. It's like the world leaders are steering us towards it.

brasty Wed 29-Mar-17 11:52:51

Doyouwantabrew Actually your views are the kind I am talking about. No it is not due to genes, although epigenetics actually do play a part. Happy resilient people usually make healthy lifestyle choices. Especially as they get older.

I know through volunteering a lot of people with very severe mental health problems. I have met some very obese people, some who drink too much, and eat junk. These are the kind of people you judge. Actually for many getting out of bed, washing, getting dressed and eating something every day, takes a lot of their resolve and energy.

ElizaDontlittle Wed 29-Mar-17 11:53:14

For the size and wealth of country we are, we take pitifully few refugees.
We invest one of the lowest amounts of %GDP into the health service.
We are expecting more for less, and failing to manage expectations, instead demonising those that are net receivers from the system.
All we can do is be a force for change where we are.

egosumquisum1 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:53:38

What we need is aliens to come.

Either to come in peace so we can learn hopefully what a different civilisation looks like and how they live together


to come in war and then we can put our differences aside.


God to come and tell us off

brasty Wed 29-Mar-17 11:55:43

And actually we have not taken in many refugees from war torn countries. Far far less than most other developed countries.

Yes unlimiteddilutingjuice lots of attitudes that once would have been seen as extreme, are now becoming mainstream.

I have watched people on here in overcrowded social housing being berated for complaining about the difficulties of being overcrowded.

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