Korea Socio-economical affairs

urban mine

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Interested to hear Korean members views on this article @Windchime @Chocopie @urban mine et al.

It's an interesting article. Foreigners rarely have deep insight into modern Korean society. Most people judge other countries based on the media and fragmentary news, but it is even more rare to hear and agonize over the concerns of young Koreans in person.

Like the title of the article, "silent death" accurately points to the political indifference of 20-30 young people, who should be the most dynamic.

What caused this to happen? Well, it's not just one thing, it's a combination of things.

However, if I had to pick one, I would say that the low growth of the Korean economy has led to uncertainty about the future of young people.

Unlike their grandfathers and fathers, today's youth are poorer and lack opportunities for better jobs. They may be able to survive somehow, but humans are relative animals, and especially in a world with social media, they can't help but feel humble about what they don't have compared to others. This makes you blame yourself and makes you even more timid. Can politics solve this problem? My personal opinion is that it hasn't, which is why young people have lost hope and become indifferent to politics.

Beyond this apathy, young people are even more angry with the political system that doesn't change anything, and the discussion should go beyond the youth generation to address the inherent wealth inequality in Korean society and abolish the privileges of the vested interests. However, the current generation of young people is not pushing for such an agenda, but is instead exhausting the whole society with useless debates that divide men and women.

Sure, some politicians may have encouraged this, but with the education we've received, we should be able to recognize this and find a better way forward. To be swayed by it shows that we're not that good.

But as the author reveals at the end, I still live in hope. Unlike the extremism we see on the internet, young people in the real world respect each other and try to find a better way forward. If you talk to them in real life, you don't see them laughing at each other. They want to be better and they want to find solutions. It's clear that the pandemic has caused a disconnect in communication, but over time, we will see more people with pluralistic attitudes who respect each other's opinions.

At the same time, there needs to be an attempt to solve the current economic situation and a social consensus on wealth redistribution, which is actually the most important thing, and I don't have a clear solution to this.
 

Windchime

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Interested to hear Korean members views on this article @Windchime @Chocopie @urban mine et al.

I think this isn't really something only limited to Korea. Marginalization between different social groups are taking place within every developed nation around the world right now it seems. Cancel culture and the word itself is not even born in Korea but fits perfectly to what David is trying to describe as well. I'm not exactly sure about the situation in Canada, but US seems to have those exact traits described in the article as well, although to a varying degree. Korea is unique in the sense that it has the younger generation divided the most amongst all these countries due to gender issues. It is also unique due to the fact that generational difference is much more stark, as pointed out in the article. Though overall, to me it seems like it's just your typical problem of corrupt journalism and negative effects of internet, especially the part about people being (willingly) stranded in their own echo chamber. It's just that these common issues are extremely exacerbated in Korea due to certain traits of the Korean society different to the other western countries, including how it uses the internet and the general landscape of the Korean web.

It's an interesting article. Foreigners rarely have deep insight into modern Korean society. Most people judge other countries based on the media and fragmentary news, but it is even more rare to hear and agonize over the concerns of young Koreans in person.

Like the title of the article, "silent death" accurately points to the political indifference of 20-30 young people, who should be the most dynamic.

What caused this to happen? Well, it's not just one thing, it's a combination of things.

However, if I had to pick one, I would say that the low growth of the Korean economy has led to uncertainty about the future of young people.

Unlike their grandfathers and fathers, today's youth are poorer and lack opportunities for better jobs. They may be able to survive somehow, but humans are relative animals, and especially in a world with social media, they can't help but feel humble about what they don't have compared to others. This makes you blame yourself and makes you even more timid. Can politics solve this problem? My personal opinion is that it hasn't, which is why young people have lost hope and become indifferent to politics.

Beyond this apathy, young people are even more angry with the political system that doesn't change anything, and the discussion should go beyond the youth generation to address the inherent wealth inequality in Korean society and abolish the privileges of the vested interests. However, the current generation of young people is not pushing for such an agenda, but is instead exhausting the whole society with useless debates that divide men and women.

Sure, some politicians may have encouraged this, but with the education we've received, we should be able to recognize this and find a better way forward. To be swayed by it shows that we're not that good.

But as the author reveals at the end, I still live in hope. Unlike the extremism we see on the internet, young people in the real world respect each other and try to find a better way forward. If you talk to them in real life, you don't see them laughing at each other. They want to be better and they want to find solutions. It's clear that the pandemic has caused a disconnect in communication, but over time, we will see more people with pluralistic attitudes who respect each other's opinions.

At the same time, there needs to be an attempt to solve the current economic situation and a social consensus on wealth redistribution, which is actually the most important thing, and I don't have a clear solution to this.
I think political indifference is exactly what David tries to say with "silent death of democracy". It seems more about the fact that a lot of people can't speak up, despite having some opinions on political subjects, alongside the fact that they are put in a subset of certain social category and handled accordingly. He goes by the problem with media biases and studies, as well as bad government policy and oversight, but I think that's some what of a universal problem in the west right now. There's a reason there are services like ground news being created in recent years to cater those who are tired of media shit-stirring (btw I never used it and have only seen it on Youtube ads, so if it's just as faulty as the media themselves, I've got nothing to say).

Though I must agree that he has a really good insight of Korean society reflecting the length of his time living in Korea, unlike most of the self-proclaimed experts of Korean matters with all their knowledge coming either from Youtube, Twitter or Reddit, that you could see with increasing numbers on the internet nowadays.

Also agree with him with the fact that reality is different. Never has there been time in history where saying "go out and touch some grass" is a genuine advice. People should actually start realizing the fact that the world lies outside of the screen.
 

Nilgiri

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I think this isn't really something only limited to Korea. Marginalization between different social groups are taking place within every developed nation around the world right now it seems. Cancel culture and the word itself is not even born in Korea but fits perfectly to what David is trying to describe as well. I'm not exactly sure about the situation in Canada, but US seems to have those exact traits described in the article as well, although to a varying degree. Korea is unique in the sense that it has the younger generation divided the most amongst all these countries due to gender issues. It is also unique due to the fact that generational difference is much more stark, as pointed out in the article. Though overall, to me it seems like it's just your typical problem of corrupt journalism and negative effects of internet, especially the part about people being (willingly) stranded in their own echo chamber. It's just that these common issues are extremely exacerbated in Korea due to certain traits of the Korean society different to the other western countries, including how it uses the internet and the general landscape of the Korean web.

Yup I agree completely. This is actually the first thing that popped up in my mind as well when I read this article (forwarded to me by a Korean friend).
 

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