Five decades ago when I was young and innocent there were wars and horrible events happening around the globe but there was a prevalent counter culture that encouraged us to search for peace, love and harmony.
Today as I look at my grandchildren, there are wars and horrible events happening around the globe but there is a psychology of selfishness becoming prevalent in our culture.
Today instead of peace, love and harmony we are encouraged to succumb to fear, anger, hatred and greed.
Our young people are taught that greed is okay, that we are not our brothers' keepers. We do not prevent crimes or disasters, with education and health programs; instead we want to spend more money on punishing criminals. We are shown almost daily that discrediting an opposing argument is not enough you also must insult and ridicule your opponent.
It is common to gain support of a crowd, a sector or a constituency by appealing to their most negative feelings. Exaggerations, distortions and variance with the facts are commonly used to enhance our sometimes unfounded fears, raising our anger a few notches, inciting an almost hatred of those who are only trying to offer a difference of opinion and then there is nothing more appealing than a threat to our pocketbooks.
A few decades ago I was in the military and we were peace keepers. We practiced war games but we were ultimately protectors of Canada and Canadians but today we are warriors, some of the best, but we are war makers and we are burying our young men and women so often, they do not get the recognition they deserve.
Many of our community leaders, our political leaders and even our religious leaders are falling victim to the failings of human nature: greed, lust, anger, hatred, power, envy, and cruelty, and abusing their positions to their own benefit and desires.
Can we resurrect the flower children of the sixties to help our children, our grandchildren even ourselves to once again see the light? Could these kind souls survive the onslaught of well-financed negative advertisements?
These leaders can incite us to battle and to donate to their war-chests and it can be disheartening to be told time and again that we are victims, but we are better than they will have you believe.
We were all born innocent, and perhaps our environment and society is teaching us to accept brutish behaviour or to justify the actions of bullies and that it all comes down to survival of the fittest, a throw back to our basic instincts but I remain ever hopeful that the innate goodness in most of us will prevail.
Five decades from now will we hear the "oldies" songs of this generation preaching peace, love and harmony or will we hear songs extolling the virtue of violence, guns, death and crime.
Flower children or power children - which do we really want our children to be and which one do we need to force our children to be to survive in this world we are leaving them.