People sometimes say, “Ignorance is bliss.” It is true that innocent children who don’t know the despair of modern society seem to live a happy life. Nevertheless, we should stop being fatalistic and see the truth in society because, currently, our safety is being jeopardized due to our ignorance.

We were all bombarded by the revelation that a food company in China exporting meat to enterprises such as McDonald’s in Japan and other Asian countries was using expired meat. This revelation resembled recent reports of government espionage on citizens’ email and phone calls, Facebook’s stealthy psychological experiment, and the leak of customers’ private information from Benesse.

Although this news is shocking, our carelessness is surely a greater problem. These reports, which are so shocking, are all but forgotten as soon as another problem is revealed, or as soon as the media stops talking about it.

Yes, we are startled and became wary for a while, but companies and the government take advantage of our lack of [long-term] prudence.

Our reticence and obedience are taken for granted. Why are we so looked down upon? Our private information might be sold at this very moment.

crescent van der linden

The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

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