Two sides to a coin

There are always two sides to a coin. Take the winter weather for instance. If it’s snow outside the white colour lights up the darkness, the air is cold but frisky and make many people feel that they are alive if they’re dressed in the right warm clothes. They love skeeing, having snow ball fights or just having a stroll enjoying the sights of the landscape clad in white. On the other hand winter, ice and snow is a life taker. It’s dangerous to be out in the cold, amounts of loose snow on mountain hills sometimes create avalanches which rage down the mountain slopes with unfathomable speed and force, destroying everything in its path. Most people who happen to come in its way die. There are snowy blizards which destroy our electricity systems and the chill of snow or treacherous ices also take lots of human and animal lifes.

It’s the same with us humans. We quarrel, have different ideas and values. Our diversity and global extension have made us competative, envious, jealous, resentful, full of spite, mockery and hate against those who do not share our own views, beliefs, gender or lifestyle. On the other hand we’re also helpful, kind and generous. Most of us like being with people who’re like ourselves. People who share the same ideas, convictions or interests and even if we try to be open-minded most of us have our limitations for what’s an acceptable behaviour. When someone transgress those borders we react in one way or the other. To take a few examples from these last days here in Sweden. In Gothenburg some teenage girl or girls at an upper secondary school had put pictures of younger girls, 13-14 years old, on Instagram and calling them 14-year-old sluts. This has provoked a violent outburst outside some schools in Gothenburg with kids throwing stones, a lynch mob-attitude and two or three days of uproar. The schools had to cancel their Christmas term cermonies to deal with the violent outbursts. Those who love the violence and want things to happen and always look for trouble are of course there as well. The kids who had been hanged out on Instagram are rightfully angry, as well as their parents and siblings, but this kind of behaviour with lynch mobs and running riot is neither acceptable. The police has done what they can to prevent the mob from attacking other kids, shop owners etc. The bottomline here is the attitudes on Internet. Many young people as well as adults have a tendency to use Internet as a canal for insults, hanging out people, spreading rumours, creating mischief and pour out hatred of others. Of course we must be able to discuss things on the Internet, and we must be allowed to have different views and perceptions, but if we want the Internet to be a good place it has to be used to create a better world, not the opposite.

In Scanian Höör kids in their early teens this week have tried to get out of trouble. They had been tricked into a club they thought would arrange parties, but it was in reality a sub-group to a criminal Mc-gang. When the kids tried to drop out they were threatened by men who told them they had to pay between 600 and 4000 Swedish kronor. This has made the parents upset and several parents have gone to the police. Four men were arrested, but two of them have been released.The attitudes towards foul play in society has to become more aware.

In Newtown, USA, a young man recently murdered 20 children aged 6 and 7 years old, and 6 women who worked at the school before he killed himself. This has created a shock wave all through the States, and discussions concerning the American right to own guns have been renewed. The tragedy in Newtown and the loss of innocent lifes is the heartbreaking trauma that never will be forgotten. The good side to this coin is the debate and the hope of increased awareness of the violent ideals. In Camden, New Jersey, all in all 1 137 guns and rifles were handed in the past week-end to the Camden gun deposit. The state pays 250 dollars per weapon to decrease the amount of guns in the city.

In Pakistan Shi’ite Muslims are persecuted and killed by sunni Muslims, Christians are also oppressed and murdered or simply rejected in the Pakistani society, and women, as in many places on earth are subjects of rapes and negligence of their human rights.In India a teen age girl was recently raped which has been fiercely debated on the internet. In both Pakistan and India there are good people who do what they can to contribute to a positive change. The democracy attempts in the Middle East are also meant for the better, even though the violence and civil wars are barbaric, as are the oppression and killings of the local people. Israel is also under great pressure from their enemies. All these discussions, attitude changes and attempts to improve things are good when it’s done to make our world a little better. Sadly enough our human hatred and intolerance too often take the upper hand, and that is a destructive, human stupidity that we have to reconsider.We MUST find the good side to the coin of life.

Anders Moberg, December 20th 2012

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