Are we living in a panto?

I am a keen observer of the events around me. This includes how people act, how people interact and how society evolves and develops, or doesn’t. In recent months I have become increasingly aware of something that appears to have taken hold particularly within the media. It is also evident in wider society and it shows no likelihood that it is going to go away, disappear or be replaced by something else. What is this thing?

It seems that we are now living in a pantomime. There are the good people and the bad people. The good people are always good and the bad people are always bad. Bad people do bad things, well…because they are bad. Good people obviously are good and try to make sure the bad people don’t hurt or impact on them. This is the same for organisations. They are either good (paying their tax bill and helping customers) or bad (just after the profit at any cost).

There is only black and white, no shades of grey. In reality the world is made up of shades of grey and we are all a combination of good and bad things. Good people can, and often do, do bad things. Bad people have been known to do good things.

I am not going to talk about specific incidents or issues. I don’t need, to the phenomenon can be seen every day of the week in some way or other. Open the pages of a newspaper, turn on the TV or radio, and there will be some story about something that has happened and who is to blame. They key element of any incident both natural or man-made is who can we blame. Who has to take responsibility and how can we make them pay?

Was this the case many years ago? I don’t think so. Things happened and it was accepted that there is not always someone to blame – the ‘acts of god’ were just part of life. I wonder if this meant that there was a more analytical approach to things, more of a desire to understand what had happened and more chance of learning. If we are constantly looking for someone to blame is that where we are putting all our effort? Has that stopped us learning and developing our society?

Next time we are watching some events unfold perhaps we shouldn’t just scream our ‘boos’ at the person we see as the villain and instead we should try to understand and analyse the situation.

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