A Society of Fear

    Have we become a society based on fear?  I would like to say no, but the evidence says otherwise.  
    Travel, especially air travel, has become a major annoyance rather than an enjoyable experience because of our fear or terrorists.  Cruise ships and trains are catching up.
    Look at the advertising industry.  Fifty years ago you rarely, if ever, say an ad based on fear.  Now, they are so common people don’t even notice.  The first one I remember was the very successful Michelin ad that showed a baby sitting in a Michelin tire.  The message of that image was very clear:  buy some other tires and your taking chances with the life of your baby.  Now we have many ads that play on many fears.  Take our supplement and you won’t get some dreaded disease.  Take our diet pill or you will get fat.  You’ll never quit smoking if you don’t join our program.  You need to get new jeans because the ones you bought for $400 last year are, well, last year’s hot designer, not this year’s.
    Politics is even worse.  campaigns used to be almost entirely “Vote for me because I will …”.  Now, it seems like at least sixty percent of the campaigning is negative, fear driven ads.  “Vote for me because the other guy will start a war”, “Vote for me because the other guy will raise taxes”,  “Vote for me or you will loose your job”.
    Look at the way so many people try to avoid reality by spending all their time in the fantasy worlds of video games, movies, drugs or booze.
    So what is wrong with a fear based society?  It means that rather than doing what we want to do, or what we know we should do, we do what is safest out of fear.  That is like hiding under the bed until the problem goes away.  And when you do that, it never goes away.

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