The world did not end on Dec. 21, as all of the fear-fueled hype predicted. Damn.
Although doomsday has seemingly come and gone with nary a hiccup in the overall scheme of things, don’t worry—there is still plenty to fear. Society makes sure of it.
Ours has become a paranoid lot, fearing everything from the sun that shines upon us to the very air we breathe. Fueled by misinformed Internet postings, random rumors, hyped-up headlines and our neighbor’s offhand remark, we become consumed by terror. What a crummy way to live.
Paranoid parents raise their kids in captivity. Women get both their breasts removed as a preventive cancer treatment “just in case.”
On the local level, we see fears fueled all over the place. Strict anti-smoking laws fuel the fear that a single puff of secondhand smoke will instantly send us, our children, our pets and our houseplants to an early grave.