This was the most important question of my childhood, and it was replaced when I went to work, with the question “How could these people be such awful people?” Their behavior seemed perfectly natural to them – and they never questioned it.
I questioned it, and continue to question it. And have come up with a simple answer:
The human mind can consider opposites to be identical.
My parents thought they were wonderful people, when they were just the opposite. And no one tried to tell them otherwise – because they were backed up by many, many people – who felt as they did.
They still feel they are right – half a century later, because there are so many people like them. All linked together by the Net.
I now want to switch the subject a bit – to the Computer. And consider how it has affected our minds. The Computer, for most people, is the Smartphone, Facebook, and Twitter.
These continue to make them feel they are wonderful – when they are just the opposite.
I am as guilty of this as anyone. The progress in Software Design has been so amazing, I cannot resist thinking it is superhuman. It keeps getting better, while people keep getting worse.
It takes a big effort for me, to back off and take the larger view. And see people and the computer as separate entities, interacting with each other.
People are getting worse, no question about that – but the Computer is not helping them to get better. Instead, people use it to get a highly distorted view of reality.
Trump grabs his phone and twits all the time.