Cult of desperation

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A group of young people formed the word "sex" at Thang Long Citadel in Hanoi and posted the photo on their Facebook pages in November. File photo

A teenager asked me how he could trust anyone, saying: "Society is full of deception. I don't know how I can live on."

I was surprised and began to look for the reasons for such a crisis.

People may attribute it to puberty, which comes along with hormonal changes.

But apart from their confusion as a result of biological changes, teenagers are facing a more serious problem despair.

Increasingly common occurrences these days are brutal murders and acid attacks.

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Young people's despair can also be found in their complaints  like "there are more bad people than good," "these guys cannot be cured, now we can't trust anyone," and "society is full of bad, I have to take care of myself without daring to help anyone."

But these complaints can be found everywhere among adults too - on social media, at animated café discussions, and even at the family dining table.

But often people who make such pessimistic comments have nothing more to go by than just rumors, which get embellished with each telling.

One such involved a motorbike driver hitting another on the street and quarreling before going home and insulting the other driver in an embroidered story. Many people jumped in and expressed their anger over the other person. It resulted in a tragedy.

They do not seem to care much about facts and have too much rage and selfishness. The term "keyboard hero" a nickname that many children give to those who are ready to insult others on the Internet should be used for these adults, who are always angry with society.

When some students lined up to form the word "sex" near Thang Long Citadel and posted the picture on Facebook, they insulted them, accused them of being uneducated, and said they should be disciplined.

When kids kiss the chair used by Korean singer Bi Rain, the adults are angry and ask why they don't consider their parents as idols rather than a foreign singer.

People have taken away the naivete of youngsters who often make simple mistakes. They generalize and carp about kids' faults because they happen to grow up in a world with television, iPad, Youtube, and social media.

Was there any social media in the past? Did they have enough money to buy pretty clothes? No, and because of this life used to be different. Even 10-20 years ago children did not have a camera to take pictures and post online, which is now attracting anger.

Teachers, parents, and, generally, adults have distorted the situation and sowed in the minds of children suspicion and confusion.

There are 11th grade girls whose parents don't allow them to go out with their classmates because they are afraid they would be seduced by boys.

Some parents do not allow their children to become painters because they believe it is no better as an occupation than begging.

Soon there will be students who do not dare post their photos on the Internet fearing disciplinary action by their schools.

To err is human. Young people love, play, and do crazy things. But they grow up every day and stand up to again walk on after stumbling.

But the adults are teaching them not to stand up straight.

Anger, confusion, and desperation among adults are also darkening the hearts and minds of the young.

It is normal for young people to be angry or confused without any reason because of puberty. But they are angry and confused because they are being co-opted to the cult of desperation by adults.

There will be a 100 murders every day at one place or another; there will be a 100 quarrels on the streets between drivers. But does life comprise only murders and fights?

No, it has more: It has an old woman living on the streets who donates money to poor patients in the last stages of cancer; it has xe om (motorbike taxi) drivers who are willing to help accident victims, taking them to hospital, and safeguarding their property; it has women who sweep the front of a neighboring apartment block whenever they sweep the front of their house.

Life is full of unexpected things. But people will die without doing anything good if there is no positive environment.

When venting your anger at someone, you are laying the curse of desperation on children who are naturally fragile but full of vitality.

Be careful!

By Khai Don*

*The writer is a blogger who lives and works in Ho Chi Minh City. The opinions expressed are his own.

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