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Write an essay explaining in what ways today are fearful than people in past generations. You may use examples from real life, the selection you just read, books, movies, music, or television shows.
A: People in past generations had far less to fear than those of our generation as the world has become more corrupt due to the on-going violence and increase in poverty. For example, although sources may vary, ABC News reports that there have been 31 school shootings since the Columbine tragedy in 1999. Furthermore, in 2008 and 2009, the U.S. labor market lost 8.4 million jobs, or 6.1% of all payroll employment. This is known as the Great Recession, which was the most dramatic employment contraction of any recession since the Great Depression. Not only did it result in the loss of millions of jobs and housing, but has also increased crime rates, particularly the number of murders caused during robberies. These examples, both in which consist of violence and poverty, demonstrate how greatly these factors have evolved, and give evidence as to why our generation is far more fearful of them now more than ever.
Overall, violence is what has always been feared throughout our entire history. Such examples of this include past wars, bombings, and the Holocaust, the mass murder of approximately six million Jews during World War II. Even so, our generation has become even more fearful in this period of time due to it. No, we are not currently faced with wars or are being brutally slaughtered in large numbers, but it is the fact that violence now thrives within our daily lives that is all the more terrifying. Mass shootings, for instance, are especially something to fear. They have not only increased and intensified, but also occur in places one would least expect. For example, on July 20, 2012, a mass shooting occurred inside of a Century movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, during a midnight screening of the film The Dark Knight Rises. After the lone gunman triggered tear gas and shot into the audience at random, killing 12 people and injuring 70 others, midnight movie premieres ceased to exist, those who authorized this afraid and concerned that such an tragic event to might repeat itself. However, despite this well-made effort, at least one theater shooting has occurred since then, proving that, no matter what efforts are made, violence will always continue to haunt us.
The degree of dread associated with poverty has also been greatly feared in both the past and the present. An example of this is the time of the Great Depression. People, then, left their children in the care of neighbors and relatives so that they could journey to neighboring towns and cities and send back meager amounts of money. There were few cars, and there was most definitely not a middle- or lower-class commodity. The United States also suffered from the Dust Bowl, so not only did people lack money, but they couldn't even grow crops to feed themselves or their livestock. Nevertheless, our generation has also dealt with a considerable amount of poverty and continues to do so. The difference, however, is not only the number of people who are rendered homeless, of lost jobs, or even of how many who are unable to feed their families, but the degree of the effects of poverty as well as the ones that have only recently arose.
Escalated rates of robberies, burglaries, and other forms of stealing are an example of these recent effects of poverty. For instance, on December 28, 2013, two men were arrested after they forced their way into an elderly Crawford Country couple's house and robbed them at gunpoint. According to Jeffrey A. Roth, a criminologist and associate director for research at the University of Pennsylvania's Jerry Lee Center of Criminology, in robberies and assaults, victims are far more likely to die when the perpetrator is armed with a gun than when he or she has another weapon or is unarmed. Likely, however, this wasn't the case. Even so, it is such crimes like these that cause people to fear. It makes them feel unsafe, cautious, or perhaps, even the need to protect themselves. An example of this is a 63-year-old Louisiana grandmother who, after purchasing a firearm, shot the teenage home invader who dared to rob her for the second time in a month. Like this women, many people, too, will eventually resolve to use firearms, which will then encourage others who might fear those who are in possession of them to do the same. Then, before anyone even realizes it, nearly every person who resides within at least 15 yards of each other will most likely a gun; some who merely want to ensure the safety of their families; others who are not mentally capable of owning one or, perhaps, will own one out of fear of those who do.
So what? What does it matter to know that we may as well be considered cowards in comparison to past generations? The answer is that it is important. It is important to know that we are not weaklings but in fact as brave as our forefathers were, and as tough if not stronger than them as well; that we all fear the same. However, as the world has evolved, our fears have as well. What was once a most terrible crime in the ages before us may be simply one of the many things we must deal with on daily basis. Yes, people today may be more fearful in many cases, but it is only because the world has become even more frightening to live in.