This image has been floating around the internets (I can’t determine its original source) in a way that suggests it resonates with a lot of us.

Doomsaying is something that’s always with us, and William Gibson argues that in futurism, at least, it’s as much a product of aging writers getting in touch with their own mortality.

But there’s something different about the present — something more sinister. The image above is, increasingly, how young people view the future, even as their elders seem oblivious to the triple threat of climate change, resource scarcity, and growing inequality.

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There’s plenty to celebrate about a future that could be significantly more livable than the present, and we try to talk about those solutions here on Grist. Sometimes they’re even easy. And yet this view of the future persists. Why is that?

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