How Does Hysteria Affect Society

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Looking back on past tragedies one can see the effects that hysteria has had on communities, fearful residents never contribute to the success and happiness of a community, but rather the destruction of one. Examples of times when hysteria has taken control of a weak community can be found in looking at the Salem Witch Trials of 1692 and in McCarthyism from the late 1940s to mid-1950s. However, while society has learned from these experiences, this does not make it so that hysteria is completely avoidable. Even in this modern-day and age, hysteria can be found tearing apart a community, or even something larger. Mass hysteria can spread through a community like a wildfire when there is no absolute way to be certain that what one fears is harmless. …show more content…
Present day America still struggles with modern day witch hunts that divide up the unity of a place and/or a certain group of people. One present day problem that has presented hysteria deals with police brutality and the targeting of youth minorities by decorated and celebrated officers. However, racism is not the only thing that is promoting police brutality, there is glorification in law enforcement that is also considered a cause. In fact, the consequences given to an officer who has abused their power or assaulted an innocent man are very minor ("The Other Cultural Forces Behind Police Brutality”). Police are often armed with weapons sufficient enough to conquer a small country, and are hardly given the training to handle a situation without using one of those weapons. This spreads hysteria in that police, the people who citizens are expected to trust and turn to, are killing innocent people simply based on a sudden judgement call often having to do with race or geographic location (The American Conservative). People of minorities fear the police because those around them are being targeted, riots against authority arise a little faster each time another youth’s life is lost. As voices get louder and riots are put on the news, fear and hysteria spreads throughout the country, making it difficult for the police not to have to use force to control the riots thus leading to more hysteria. ("Underground Codes”). Hopefully one day in the near future, common ground will be found, police will receive adequate training, and crime rate in lower class neighborhoods will go down, getting rid of the need for police to forcefully and often unnecessarily

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