By GENE HERRICK

Oh, I know that things and life change over time, but today’s world appears to have gone amuck, and in a manner inconsistent with normal transition.

Whether I am a retired journalist or not, I find myself following the same instincts of being an observer, and an interpreter of what mankind is doing? Having been a photographer and writer with The Associated Press for 28 years, I find my innate traits are being as active as before.

Understanding the huge changes in mankind today, especially as it relates to government, world changes that seemingly are so drastic and fearful, and human communication, is a challenge. Our current government appears to be something out of the ordinary, and a complete switch from what our forefathers dreamed of.

I now find that I do not understand the seemingly huge changes in the last flip of generations. Yes, there are always changes, but, for me, the change to era of millennialism has rocked my boat. So many of the younger people one meets today — working in department stores, fast food outlets, or just anywhere, are solemn, unsmiling, and seemingly in another world of non-pleasantries and communication.

I find a great chasm in the art of personal communication. So much so, that I recently introduced myself to a lady I did not know, but assumed she was in the millennial age bracket. I told her I was a retired journalist — inquisitive and full of wonderment, and I was wondering if she might explain millennials. She smiled and then told me a story. “I work in an office with five other ladies, and we work closely together,” she said. “We go to lunch together; we go to the same restaurant; we sit at the same table; we do not talk.” She went on, “We all use our cell phones and text each other.” I asked her if they ever voice talked — especially since they were face-to-face. She replied with a smiling “No.” I was stunned.

Change is always there, and to be expected. As a photographer, I have seen dramatic changes in cameras, film, and transmission of pictures and news. As a correspondent during the Korean War in 1950, it sometimes took a couple of days to get a picture out to the world public, but today it takes only seconds to take the digital picture and transmit it world-wide by satellite.

As to the world of human communications, it appears there has been a drastic change, and one wonders if for the good of mankind. It appears, at least to me, and many others, the communication, behavior, attitude, and leadership of the countries of the world, including, and especially that of the U.S., have greatly changed. The political and social changes in this country alone have been dramatically altered. The three divisions of our government, Legislative, Judicial, and Executive, have seemingly been altered to a point of battle. The man-in-the-street worries about the outcome of these battles, and, of course, wonders about his own personal and family survival. Decisions that are contrary to the norm, are, in fact, hurting this country and upsetting the world at-large.

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