Does everything seem to be falling apart? Ready to head for the hills? Maybe that calls for less time on the Internet. Writing at his blog—which, ironically, is on the internet—the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission’s Samuel James argues the Internet alters the way we think, causing us to look at the world with more fear, hatred, or foreboding than our actual surroundings warrant.
“A dive in to social media,” he warns, “will lead you to believe that the world is a terrible place to live right now. Everything, from the littlest of impolite slights to the most difficult issues of human justice, is magnified with unending intensity on the screen.” Yet visit a city park or a library, and the people there “talk normally, seem relatively calm, maybe even kind.”
Bad news and rude comments online aren’t the whole story. As Samwise Gamgee says in “The Two Towers,” “There’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo.” Sometimes we’ve got to look up from our screens to notice.