It’s being called the information age. This is a time when more people know more information about more things than any time in the history of the universe. The internet and digital media make almost all information instantly available. What used to be news is now history by nightfall. Not all information is good, however. I think our young people today know far more at an early age about things better learned with a little maturity. Yes, I mean sex, violence and mind altering substances to name a few.
Then there is the information that comes with age. We call it experience. While I think it is mostly positive… experience, too, has a down side. Particularly in a small community. The more you learn about the people around you, the harder it is to avoid becoming cynical. With experience you learn that some things just don’t work and some people just can’t be trusted. When you try to prevent a younger person from making a mistake based on your experience, your advice is usually rejected.
I’m finding that the older I get and the more I learn about people the more cynical I become. But, I think maybe one of the better lessons age has taught me is the realization that people believe what they want to believe, regardless of the truth or how strong the proof of a fact is.
I have also learned that far too many people are only concerned about that which impacts them directly. They don’t even vote. The problem with that is that eventually when we don’t take care of problems affecting the community as a whole, they will then come around to impact us directly… and then it is too late to do anything about it.
In this information age, I think that the information that comes with age is far more valuable than that instant information that is sometimes severely flawed by lack of experience, a disregard for the facts, and opinions tainted by ignorance. But try to sell that someone half your age.
- Lanny Capps