Is civilization today a worse place to raise children then it ever was? Has the depravity of the human race increased? Are we a "sicker" species than we ever were before? Certainly civilization is far from ideal. Misogyny, genocide and torture abound. Greed and selfishness seem to be the operative philosophy as we bicker like kindergarteners armed with nuclear and biological weapons over the world's dwindling resources. But cheer up! It's all in one's attitude. When you look at things the right way, they aren't all that bad after all.
It's All About You
If you are reading this article, you probably have enough food to eat, clean water to drink and bathe in, and a reasonably nice place to live. Maybe not every meal is a feast, maybe you smell a little chlorine in your water, maybe somebody gets mugged in your neighborhood once in a while, but all in all, things are pretty good for the only person in the world who really counts: YOU. So stop bumming out about the bad things that are happening to other people. That's bad for them, but it really doesn't affect you all that much, does it? So relax, bucko.
Your kids are not you. By the time we run out of water or food or petroleum, you'll probably be dead. So they may have to deal with it, but you won't. Will they blame you? Maybe, but they are going to blame you for whatever is wrong with their lives anyway! So why worry?
In our consumer lifestyles, a child is considered impoverished if they don't have a wide screen TV, notebook computer and iPod. You don't want them to feel deprived, do you? So you get them what all the other kids have. Of course you do, you're a good parent. In the mean time, you get the same for yourself. Why not? Now you sit around the house in separate rooms plugged into various devices. The kids are basically raising themselves with the aid of electronic devices and market driven media. It's a win-win situation!
So they lie, cheat, and steal. So what! So does society! Why should they be non-conformist? Ethics and morals are all relative anyway. Relax, will you?
Sickness in History
It's true that our society is pretty sick, but we are only one contender in the contest for sickest society of all time. The ancient civilizations in what we now call South America practiced human sacrifice. In ancient Greece, young boys were really popular in a pretty sick way, and bulimia was a party game. Romans used to teach the locals a lesson by flaying their skin off and displaying the bodies on the town wall. In China they used to leave their unwanted infants out to starve to death. If you want to put modern society on a sickness scale of 1 to 10 with these sicko societies, personally I think we rate about a 5.
To summarize, first of all, if the sickness isn't really affecting you directly, don't worry about it. Secondly, don't worry about your kids because you're really not going to have all that much to do with the way they turn out because they're too busy playing Diner Dash and you're too busy writing Hub Pages. Third, we are not the sickest society in history, so don't worry about our society. Worry about how you are going to afford the next generation of wide screen television. Now that is something to worry about.