Saturday, December 1, 2007

Rant on the Brutal Human Animal

I just saw No Country for Old Men in the theater last night and then later in the evening caught the second half of Gangs of New York on TV (which I had seen before). In addition I saw a trailer for an upcoming film also starring Daniel Day Lewis called There Will Be Blood, which seems to place Lewis near the Mexican border (around the same type of site of No Country for Old Men) about 30 yrs later than the Civil War (the time of Gangs of NY). Anyhoo, the main thing I wanted to remark on is how much personal physical security I take for granted and that in our US 21st century life we talk about how the world is going to hell in a hand basket (which I think maybe every generation in every culture thinks as they age), but how much we don't realize how crazy and savage us humans can and have been. Before the modern law and order, upper middle class Texas existence I live in, dying due to human altercations and violence was more expected common place. No wonder saying what you thought was so coveted as a rare privilege. I'd certainly be dead by now for the stubborn mouthy opinions I have so casually blunted out. And I also take for granted that folks don't want to butcher, maim, or kill others so easily-carelessly. That somehow we all have a need to live and let live, and avoid bloodshed and pain. Hell, I think humans (men mostly, but plenty of women too) are probably more blood thirsty to do each other in more than any other species...okay maybe we are the only species that is so destructive to ourselves (minus some unique behaviors of a few chimp, feline, female eating male insects, and some infanticidal rodent species). Just thinking more like times before now were a lot more brutal for humans and maybe its more like No Human Country for this Sensitive Sheltered Old Lady.

1 comment:

richard said...

Your essay on the vicissitudes of human violence and the evil in men that generates it is very thoughtful. However, I am inclined, your sense of things notwithstanding, that the incidence of egregiously violent behavior, one person against another, has always been what you might call "static." That is, the zenith of such appalling acts is both now . . . AND then. Consequently, a more accurate, if less elegant, title for the Coens' movie and Cormac McCarthy's theme (of MINDFUL individual brutality) might be: "No Country For Anyone, Ever."

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