Law and order: 1940 vs 1980

I was just doing some light reading of Business and the Law (2009) and I came across some really interesting facts which astounded me at how far our society has come in just forty years. To be honest, it was quite a bit of a shock.

There was a study (as reported by the Sydney Morning Herald, 1985) done in America which listed the top disciplinary issues as reported by teachers in 1980 and then compared to s similar study done in 1940 and the results, to me, were quite astounding.


  1. Talking
  2. Chewing gum
  3. Making noise
  4. Running in the halls
  5. Getting out of turn in line
  6. Wearing improper clothing
  7. Not putting paper in wastebaskets


  1. Rape
  2. Robbery
  3. Assault
  4. Burglary
  5. Arson
  6. Bombings
  7. Murder
  8. Suicide
  9. Absenteeism
  10. Vandalism
  11. Extortion
  12. Drug abuse
  13. Alcohol abuse
  14. Gang warfare
  15. Pregnancy

Now it’s possible to argue that we live in a much more relaxed and “freer” society now than in 1940’s but are the positive changes in our society greater than the negative? Is there a net social benefit? The rapid rate of social degredation to me indicates that something is awry in our society and we’ve gone from one end to the complete other, in just 40 years. What will the top 10 issues be in 2030 and beyond? Will society come back a little? Or have we gone too far, does the influence of corporations, on TV, in video games, all influence the younger generation into doing more and more extreme things? Do we need to protect our children more?

All interesting questions. Maybe I should have done Philosophy 🙂

Up to you. Me, I’m going back to reading the other 7 chapters that I need to have read.