Thursday, 14 March 2013

Atmospheric Anger

I have this idea about anger. It's like global warming. Really, it is. We all feel it, we don't take responsibility for it or try hard enough to control it and then it heats and distorts the environment, first on a local level and then globally. There are, of course, lots of things about which to get angry. Some righteously, some randomly. When people get angry, their behaviour is then predicated on this emotion. I'm saying people; I am so including myself here. I react with anger automatically.

Actually, 'automatically' is a bit of a cop out - it's by choice, if I'm not going to let myself off the hook. It's just that it happens so fast that I don't intercede. I could step in and change my behaviour. And anger begets anger. I start mouthing through my windscreen at some twit who has cut me up, and they start throwing the 'v' signs and feeling self-righteous. Neither of us steps back to think whether there is another way of dealing with this situation.

And then all this anger rises up in a poisonous cloud which heats up the atmosphere and nobody started it and everyone is used to it so we all live with it and don't know how to change and can't get a corporate movement started to make change happen. And anger, just like fossil fuel use, is hard-wired into our society. For instance, we watch soap operas on telly where nobody listens to anyone else but scowls and snorts and relationships collapse, and then we listen to Today in Parliament and it's the same but with posher accents and worse actors. And journos shock us with more and more violent stories because they're not getting the outraged reaction often enough, and sometimes they even tell us that we are angry when we didn't realise we were....and then we are shocked and saddened that people are killing each other in far off lands.... Only we are doing the same here.

Stress kills people, anger destroys, knives are pulled out more readily and with less cause. I guess that we still tolerate it as it feels at more manageable levels and for most of us, not in our immediate community. There are a few voices raised about it but really it's seen as someone else's problem.

Which is funny, because that's exactly how we feel about global warming in this country. Not our problem, affects people far away, and only marginally us, and we're not a global community, so let's close the door and cuddle up and donate something to Comic Relief and then that's fine. Bollocks. Oops, there I go again.

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