After being on this planet for many a moon, I have finally figured out what's wrong with our society. It has taken me a long time, and it really isn't one single factor, but basically it does boil down to one key point:
We, as a society, are selfish.
That's it. That's the answer. Each and every one of us, are basically selfish. Being selfish morphs into many forms and examples. One of the forms that being selfish takes is lack of consideration. Here's some examples of lack of consideration:
1. How many times have you held open a door for someone? Or said "Thank You". Or said "God Bless You" when they sneeze. Then get stone cold silence from the person you were considerate towards?
2. Stand by the PATH train exit and watch how many people blatantly disregard the walk signal and walk directly into traffic. I'm not talking about your basic jaywalking (which I do, too), when the signal is red and there are no cars. I'm talking about pedestrians who walk directly into traffic and expect cars to stop for them. Then glare at the cars for nearly hitting THEM!
3. Umbrellas. Walk down the street on a rainy day. How many assholes have the golf umbrellas which can fit about 4 people under it. They walk on the sidewalk, without a care in the world, and hit people with the edges of their umbrella - and glare at the people they hit like it is THEIR fault.
4. Double parked cars, cars parked on sidewalks, cars parked in yellow zones or on corners. Even Google Maps shows cars double parked outside of Piccolo's.
You ask anyone why they do it - and it's always "someone else's fault".
If someone runs a red light, it wasn't their fault, it was because everyone else is driving too slow.
If someone double parks, it wasn't their fault -- there's no parking in town!
If someone gets a parking ticket it wasn't their fault -- it's City Hall's fault for the signs not being easily understood, even though they have been in place for 10 years.
Selfish. That's the problem. Lots of my friends have gotten married or are getting married, a great example of selfishness are seen how people adhere or disregard the traditions of marriage, depending on how it helps them.
For example, who pays for marriage?
Traditionally it was the bride's family who paid for that. How often do you see the brides splitting that cost?
Who pays for the wedding ring?
Traditionally that would be the groom. How often do you see the brides splitting that cost?
Who takes on the last name of the groom?
Traditionally brides take the grooms last name. It's symbolic. Selfless. Showing that the bride is joining the groom's family.
Now what do you see today when people get married? Brides want the groom's family to split the wedding costs & they want to keep their last names - but the groom still pays $10,000+ for a wedding ring, a tradition they like to keep in place.
Lets look at American politics.
Taxes are a big issue right now. No one wants to pay taxes. But everyone wants healthcare. Everyone wants jobs. Everyone wants social security. Everyone wants the other guy to pay for it.
Perfect example is healthcare. You have people out there who are actors or artists, and they complain that they aren't getting healthcare. But they aren't paying their fair share into taxes. They say that they "deserve healthcare - Canada or Europe does it!!"
Have you looked at Greece or Italy lately? They are beyond broke. The rest of the EU is getting dragged down because of the selfishness of their people.
Is it being selfish to ask for healthcare? No.
But it is selfish to ask for healthcare and not pay into it. I personally think every TAXPAYER should get healthcare. Isn't that fair? You pay taxes, you get something in return.
You defend our country in the Armed Forces - you get healthcare for life.
You are a senior citizen who paid taxes their whole life - you get healthcare until you die.
You are an illegal immigrant who is getting paid in cash illegally? YOU DON'T GET HEALTHCARE.
You are a "staving artist" living in SoHo who thinks they are too good to get a menial job? YOU DON'T GET HEALTHCARE.
They are the selfish ones. Taking something without giving back. To me, healthcare should be universal for everyone who is paying (or had paid) into the system. Citizens of America, with the only exemption for those in religious services.
How is this different than, say a generation ago?
Families were brought up more concerned about their neighbors than themselves. Ask not what your country can do for you, but what YOU can do for your country. Parents taught their kids right and wrong. There was 1st, 2nd and 3rd place. Not "achievement ribbons" for every child. Every kid isn't going to be an astronaut or a lawyer or Michael Jordan. You can't coddle kids, tell them that they are all special, and that they can never do wrong. What you get is exactly what's wrong today: a generation of kids who are entitled brats.
A generation ago words like "Please, Thank You, Excuse Me, Sir/Ma'am" were taught to children by their parents, not something kids said while rolling their eyes. How many times are you on a crowded subway and someone blasts through the door snarling: "EXCUSE ME! EXCUSE ME!" because YOU are in THEIR way.
Remember a key term: It's always the other person's fault.
You can't find a job? It's someone else's fault.
You can't pay your loans? It's the credit card companies fault for making it too easy to apply.
You can't pay your mortgage? It's the governments fault you put 0% down and paid for a home you couldn't afford on your $60,000 salary.
You can't pay your student loans? It's Bush's fault for destroying the economy so I couldn't graduate with a BA in Rhetoric and make $250,000 a year starting salary at a dot com.
It's always someone else's fault. No one is allowed to take ownership of their actions. Ever. This goes back to the entitlement. Me first. I'm special. It's not about you, its only about me. Me, me, me, me, me, me, me.