We Who Are About to Die Salute You! Opinion Piece.



Rewind to four hundred years BCE. Gladiators and slaves fought in the Roman Empire, egged on by massive crowds on an outing to see the spectacle of bloodshed and carnage. The participants in these spectacles had become dehumanized in the minds of the spectators. A one-on-one fight ended when one man died. When one of the fighters was wounded to the extent that he was unable to fight on, he made a sign begging for mercy. His fate rested in the hands of the crowd, who either gave a thumbs up to enable him to fight another day, or the thumbs down for instant death. Barbaric, cruel, sadistic. 

Fast forward to the 21st century. Nowadays people with nothing better to occupy themselves have become the equivalent of the spectators in the Roman arena. We have the phenomenon of trial in the Court of Public Opinion. Those are far too often based on a stream of incomplete or inaccurate information splashed out carelessly by the worst forms of media. And many members of the audience are ruthless in baying for blood - via social media.

 The opinions that some readers don't hesitate to share with the world are far too often brutal and vicious. Without the filter of face to face contact some of the worst personality traits of humanity emerge. During the last couple of weeks there have been a couple of incidents on UK live television involving 'celebrities'. Consequently, a flow of opinions emerged culminating with a suggestion, on twitter, that a popular television personality ' die like your sister' - a beloved and mourned sister who died not so long ago from terminal cancer. What sort of person would write or think such a thought? Barbaric, cruel, sadistic. Just one example of the mountain of vitriol that is spewed out on a daily basis. Is this how much 'civilised' society has progressed in 2000 years? 



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