Watch Out!

Pritish Nandy puts forth some great points in his recent post entitled ‘The deficit of trust‘…

I live on the 24th floor of a well secured multi storied building no one can enter without an ID card. Yet how often have I left my front door open? Never. How often have I left my car unlocked and run out for an errand? Never. How often do I stop on the street and help someone in need? Not as often as I ought to. How often do I stop and feed a hungry stray dog? Not as often as I could. Why? I am programmed to fear it may bite me. How often do I help an accident victim? Rarely. Why? I worry about being drawn into a police case. How often do I give money to an urchin? Not as often as I’d like to. Why? I fear I may be encouraging begging. Behind every small act of ours is a deficit of trust.

… We are always warning friends, associates, colleagues, spouses, children to be wary. Never take candy from a stranger, is every mother’s first tip to her child. Never hire a great looking secretary, is every wife’s first threat to her husband. Think twice before you marry a great looking or successful guy, is every friend’s advice to another, he can always ditch you for someone else. In fact, the moment you ask someone for advice, on anything related to a relationship or a health issue or a property deal, be sure to be warned.

Our first reaction to everything is: Watch out! We even sign off, saying Take Care.

As an informed citizen, most of this comes naturally to me, as it does to many of us.  As a parent, I hardly even think about the alternatives, when it comes to erring on the side of safety for my children.  Nandy argues that “the deficit of trust besieges us with fear”.  It’s changing our lives, and not for the better, I’m afraid…

Will we ever be able to break out from this?  Or, are future generations doomed to live a life of even more mistrust?!