Commonwealth Journal

Columns

July 24, 2012

The Agent of Chaos

—  

It used to be that the motivation of super villains was easy to figure out: greed.
They robbed banks for money. They stole priceless diamonds from museums. Maybe they were power hungry and wanted to take over Metropolis, or New York City, or the world. Maybe they thirsted for revenge against a hero who had beaten them previously, and wanted an eye for an eye.
This is reflective of the times in which these characters were created. The world was drawn more simply then, in stark black-and-white terms. Everyone in American society knew who our villains were and what they wanted. Organized crime. The Nazis during World War II.
Later, comic books were influenced by attitudes toward issues like the spread of Communism during the Cold War and man’s venturing into outer space (you saw a lot more aliens bent on conquering the Earth starting in the “Space Age”). Americans knew that you were to abide by the law, and if you didn’t, you became a criminal and were punished. It’s just the way the world turned.
Evil appears to have changed since then, however, or at least the way we perceive it. These days, it seems more random, more senseless. We’ve seen planes crash into the World Trade Towers. We’ve seen school shootings. We’ve seen bath salt-fueled “zombies” eating off other people’s faces. We look at these things and say we don’t understand. Why did these things happen? How could they be allowed to take place? Rather than seeing clear good vs. evil, we question everything.
Largely because, perhaps, the motivations have changed. The above atrocities were not committed for a simple, rational reason (e.g. steal the diamond, hold it ransom for money, live comfortably on your ill-gotten wealth). They were done for religious fanaticism. In a chemical-addled stupor. For the sake of sheer chaos. Because one day, someone woke up and said, “Why not?”

Text Only
Columns
  • mug shot.jpg Stanziano left behind a grand legacy

    It should be no surprise that Mark Stanziano was an Oakland Raiders fan. Back in the day, Raiders owner Al Davis always looked for the good in a football player— regardless of their sometimes less-than-sparkling reputation.

    July 4, 2014 1 Photo

  • The great Hobby Lobby debate
    It’s a common joke among those of us in the libertarian set that liberals are pro-choice when it comes to reproductive rights — and anti-choice when it comes to everything else.
    Rarely is that borne out so much than in the Hobby Lobby contraceptives case.

    July 4, 2014

  • 002 CHRIS NEW MUG.jpg Without the past, there is no present

    June 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug shot.jpg Political correctness is running amok

    Once again, political correctness is running amok. This time, it’s the bureaucrats in Washington trying to force Daniel Snyder to change the name of his National Football League team.

    June 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug shot.jpg 20 years since the fall of a national hero

    If you were a child of the 70s, you probably were a fan of O.J. Simpson. The angular running back with smooth-as-silk moves and power to boot was the first African-American athlete who really transcended racial barriers.

    June 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug shot.jpg A little guidance on the safety of our teens
    If you’re the parent of a teen, there’s good news. Your child is less likely to drink and smoke these days, and less likely to fight at school. Unfortunately, they’re also likely to text behind the wheel when they reach driving age, and they’re much more immersed in video games, the Internet and their handy smartphone.
    These results were gleaned from a test of 13,000 U.S. high school students last spring. This survey has been conducted since 1991.

    June 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Coal can’t be king in Kentucky forever

    “We’re going to be screwed no matter what,” a mechanic in Wooton, Ky., told me last year. We were talking about the coal industry and how it might be regulated in the future.

    June 13, 2014

  • 002 CHRIS NEW MUG.jpg Grads leave high school well-prepared for life Tonight, the current crop of seniors from my high school alma mater receive their diplomas. ‘Tis the season for graduations, and Somerset High School will be saying goodbye to the class of 2014. Next weekend, Pulaski County High School and Southwestern High School will do likewise.

    May 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug shot.jpg Grimes needs to take a firm stand on Obama Alison Lundergan Grimes is in a really tough spot. First of all, she’s squaring off against a GOP juggernaut in longtime U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell this fall. And, secondly, she finds herself linked to the most unpopular president ever in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Instead of taking a firm stand on her feelings on President Oba

    May 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • 002 CHRIS NEW MUG.jpg Sometimes it’s hard to let go of an old friend

    May 21, 2014 1 Photo

News Live
AP Video
Judge Ponders Overturning Colo. Gay Marriage Ban Airlines Halt Travel to Israel Amid Violence NYPD Chief Calls for 'use of Force' Retraining VA Nominee McDonald Goes Before Congress Bush: Don't Worry, Sugarland Isn't Breaking Up US Official: Most Migrant Children to Be Removed Police Probing Brooklyn Bridge Flag Switch CDC Head Concerned About a Post-antibiotic Era Raw: First Lady Says `Drink Up' More Water Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Holder Urges Bipartisanship on Immigration Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball US Airlines Cancel Israel Flights Obama Signs Workforce Training Law Crash Victims' Remains Reach Ukraine-held City Diplomatic Push Intensifies to End War in Gaza Cat Fans Lap Up Feline Film Festival Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks