Kudos Amanda for backing up your argument with solid facts, and illustrating them so nicely. Your core argument is similar to that advanced by Stephen Pinker (The Better Angels of Our Nature) a couple of years ago and in general terms it is correct. What's missing from Pinker's analysis, and from yours, is the fact that sudden large-scale disruptions can set back such progress quite dramatically and can induce huge negative effects that last for decades. A few examples of such disruptions include WWI, the Great Depression, and most recently our self-made Second Great Depression that resulted from far too many people being stampeded into mass hysteria by irresponsible media sensationalism, leading to an estimated 1.5 billion people being thrown into extreme financial distress and global supply chains being catastrophically disrupted. As we know from bitter experience, such huge financial shocks invariably lead to populism/nationalism growing even worse, which in turn invariably leads to economic and military stupidities that can destroy the lives of hundreds of millions of people. So while the long-term trends are good, that does not mean the next couple of decades will be likewise, alas. Perhaps a few generations hence we will finally understand that no society aspiring to civilized norms can permit sensationalist media to create global hysteria merely in order to pull in eyeballs and thus boost revenues. People are too ignorant and intellectually lazy to realize they're being fed a totally distorted picture so we can't count on the average person wising up.

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