If you pay attention to the stories that most major news agencies report on a daily basis, you might notice a trend. It doesn’t take long to notice that about 90% of the reported news on the internet and television is negative. Take a quick look at the websites of CNN, Fox News, MSNBC and almost any other large news outlet and you will find stories about everything from economic disasters on the horizon to murders, and even reports that claim the health of society is worse than ever before.
An unfortunate reality is bad news sells and controversy pays the bills for most news agencies. However, with such a void of positive stories and current event information, it can make you wonder what direction society is really headed, up or down.
On the Decline or Better than Ever?
The fact of the matter is society and global conditions almost universally are better than any other time in human history. In fact, no other period in history is even close by any measure. I am quite certain if you put some effort into it, you could find data with specific comparisons that could make a case to the contrary. However, I am talking about the general state of society as a whole on a macro level.
Global poverty rates, starvation, teen pregnancy, fatal auto accidents and uncontrollable outbreaks of disease, all at historic low points. For the most part, each of these issues shows improvement almost every year and have for quite a while.
While economies have been challenging in recent years relative to the 90s and early 2000s, the overall standard of living, daily conveniences and social support for those struggling has never been better. Additionally, many emerging nations have experienced economic growth and improvement far beyond any period in the past. In recent years, emerging nations have had so much economic growth millions of people who lived in poverty just a few short years ago, are now a part of the middle class.
You could spend a lot of time doing research and throwing big numbers around to prove points about the health of society one way or the other if motivated by a particular point of view. However, I find the best indication is not what we hear or see on the news; it is what we see in our everyday lives.
The quality of products across the board has dramatically improved on all levels, even compared to a few years ago. Medical advancements are nothing short of remarkable and offer amazing treatment options that help people deal with serious health issues more effectively than at any time in the past. Electronic cigarettes, smartphone fitness tracker apps and unlimited sources of health information via the internet are easily accessible, affordable and provide society with excellent health benefits.
There are many more examples of improvement in society and obvious signs the future looks brighter than ever before. Sometimes, you just have to turn off the news, take a look around and focus your perspective a bit to see things clearly.