When I was a child I remember learning that a defining part of our humanity was that we modified our environment to meet our needs. This is what allowed us to survive ice ages and conquer the planet . From my adult study of evolution, psychology, archeology, etc…it does seem that this is correct. For good or ill, this is at the very basis of what it means to be human.
From early childhood, through adulthood, and unto death; modern humans must conform to an inhumane structure. Nature was malleable, we molded Her to our needs. Modern societal constructs are brittle, they are incapable of being molded to our needs, our needs are subjected to conform with them. A child does not have the ability to mold school to meet his needs, he must conform or risk being outcast (or drugged). This lasts into adulthood when one enters the employment world. And, once again we find, that a woman must conform to work, there is no modifying her environment to meet her needs. It is only the command to conform, and not only to work. There are also constructed roles that she must conform to, whether they include mother, wife, daughter, parishioner, customer, employee, etc… These, along with the concrete world, are all constructs to which we must conform. Conform or be outcast. Yet to conform is to betray that which makes us human.
So we live in this dehumanizing environment and we become depressed or bi-polar or obsessed or anxious or fearful or just plain old mad. This is quite a natural reaction it would seem to me. Yet we drug these people in an attempt to treat not the disease, but the symptom of the disease. So we drug the patient and the disease continues to flourish, the disease is societal rigidity; and no matter how many pharmaceuticals we flush into circulation, the disease spreads.
An entire generation is being raised never knowing true humanity. Crammed into roles that do not fit their needs, forced to conform to a system that was not designed with them in mind, is it truly any wonder why they sometimes lash out? Need we wonder why there is so much youth violence, or the occasional Columbine?
No. I am only surprised that there is not much more of it. It seems to me that these kids just want to feel human, even if just for a brief flash. Feel the numbness wash away, and marvel in a true experience that is truly human.