Technology causing disconnect

mycolormugwebBy Anthony Welch
Editor

It’s something that I’m witnessing more and more, and it’s disturbing to me – the lack of human interaction and common courtesy when I venture out and about.

Much too often, my 6-year-old son Jaxson and I seem to be the only people who remember simple manners when walking around a store. People walk in front of us, reach in front of us without even a mumble of “Excuse me.”

Just as my father taught me, Jaxson also holds the door for people. I’ve been shocked at the number of people who walk through without a single “Thank you.” I experience this as well, when holding the door for people. I feel like everyone is so self-absorbed they’re walking around, doing their thing robot-like.

I blame technology and social media. As convenient, handy and helpful as they are, I feel they’re causing a major disconnect in our society. On social media, people are quick to “friend” you, “like” a post, and comment freely, both positively and negatively.

Many seemed to have forgotten that actions speak louder than social media posts.

It’s depressing to me that it takes tragedy, like a mass shooting, for people to stop and think. But even then, it just turns into social media posts like, “Thoughts and prayers.” How about we all strive to be kind to one another, even strangers, before such tragedy strikes? Try and remember that everyone has stress in their lives, everyone has issues, we’re all human.

Maybe I’m just getting older and grumpier, but these things are disheartening to me. Simply driving my son around town has become so stressful, I take whatever back routes I can. People seem to be in such a rush to do whatever they’re off to do, they have no care or concern for others on the road. You let someone in traffic, there’s no longer the friendly wave. Turn signals, as easy to use as they are, have gone by the wayside. People with “Respect Life” license plates are recklessly speeding and darting in and out of lanes. I feel like I need “Thoughts and Prayers” every time I get behind the wheel.

Getting back to my point, the world is turning into a crazy mess of politics, tragedies and natural disasters. Let’s remember to take care of one another. Remember the simple manners our parents taught us. Pass those on to your children. Smile at a stranger. Lend a stranger a hand. Wave at strangers. The smallest act of kindness goes a long way.

Along the lines of kindness, read about what the volunteers at Safe Place for Pets are doing. The organization takes in pets from owners who are terminally ill or can no longer care for their animals. Read Carol Thompson’s story on page 11.

There’s also an interesting story on Brooke Squires on page 4. Back in the day, she had bit roles in major films, including “American Graffiti,” “Top Gun” and a few others. Read Natalie Minasian’s story on page 4.

With warm weather still hanging around for a few more months, venture to 10 scenic areas as described in our travel section on page 6.

Thank you, as always, for reading Life After 50.

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