The world we live in is getting crazy, and the people in it are getting crazier.

Commentary Opinion

The great gonzo journalist, Hunter S. Thompson once said “when the going gets weird, the weird go pro.” Well the going has definitely gotten weird. Take one moment and consider the state of sanity in our world.

It’s a crazy world. Chinese fortune cookies say:  “may you live in interesting times”, and brother, they are interesting. Some would say that we are at the height of civilization, and others the end. It is a crazy world and getting crazier.

We lol on youtubes and check our facespaces via the world enveloping web spewed by porn, while wars rage around us. It’s not uncommon to see four grown men walk into a restaurant, sit facing each other at a table, and then they all pull phones and start talking to someone else. TV has become reality and reality has become TV. Every facet of life has become more complex and it keeps complicating at an exponential rate.

School shootings grow more and more common, and has anyone checked lately how many kids are on psychiatric drugs? In the St. Petersburg Times July issue of 2007 it was reported that in Florida alone, there were 18,000 kids on Medicaid given antipsychotic drugs. That isn’t even counting all the rich society kids being treated for whatever anxiety disorder is popular that day. The World Health Organization estimates by 2020, depression will be the second major cause of disability, right behind heart disease. People have yet to look the problem in the face and realize the epidemic of insanity that surrounds us.

The world we live in is getting crazy, and the people in it are getting crazier.
Actually, the politically proper thing to say is mentally ill, not crazy. People are no longer insane, or crazy, or maddened, or possessed, no, now they are mentally ill. As a member of the mentally ill, I must protest this view of We, the crazy people. It hurts when someone thinks of you as ill. Sometimes being what you are is all you can do on this earth, and just because it is different, or misunderstood, or crazy, does not make it wrong. Sometimes a little crazy can be the best thing possible. There have been a number of significant things that crazy people have done throughout history that have positively influenced the community around them. Vikings used to revere their berserkers in battle.  In some ancient cultures, it was the madmen who were given positions as seers or prophets. The Native American tribal peoples often felt that these special people were gifted with visions by the spirits that would lead the tribe through natures challenges.

If our society took a different approach to the way we view mental illness, there might be any number of ways we could find to put these unique and creative people to use for the betterment of society. Our world is getting crazier and maybe if we can learn to understand the insanity around us we still might be able to reach that pinnacle of human development we have tried for so long to attain. Friedrich Nietzsche , the German philosopher, saw the problems of today apparent in the pages of history. “Insanity in individuals is something rare – but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.” Nietzsche said.

If we, as a race of mixed psychosis, want to survive the tests of time and history, it may be necessary for us to find a place for the legions of lunacy that dwell among us.  We might find that simply medicating the mad and locking them away because they don’t want to play the game of sane, is an exercise in futility.  It could be that crazy people are crazy because it is the insanity that guides them to the best purpose the universe may have for them. We are not mentally ill, more like mentally unique and allowing us to be ourselves may be the best thing for us to feel whole.

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