Laudato Si 46: Social Aspects of Global Change

Earth from Apollo 8The encyclical letter Laudato Si is available here on the Vatican website. Here, a brief discussion of the effects of change on a large scale–not just climate.

46. The social dimensions of global change include the effects of technological innovations on employment, social exclusion, an inequitable distribution and consumption of energy and other services, social breakdown, increased violence and a rise in new forms of social aggression, drug trafficking, growing drug use by young people, and the loss of identity. These are signs that the growth of the past two centuries has not always led to an integral development and an improvement in the quality of life. Some of these signs are also symptomatic of real social decline, the silent rupture of the bonds of integration and social cohesion.

We have to come to terms with this accurate diagnosis. On one hand the quality of life for the wealthy has certainly improved in the past two-hundred years. And generally, there is great potential for others to realize a better life than previous generations. Still, there are social effects to technological and scientific progress. It may not be the “fault” of engineers or scientists, but people who can budge public policy may well have to admit that some aspects of the modern world are actually in decline.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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