Why Americans Don’t Date Their Friends Anymore

For decades going back at least to World War II, Americans met their wives and husbands through their friends. Since the rise of online dating about a decade ago, that’s no longer the case. This was presented as a good thing by the dating services, Serena Smith writes: “Your dating pool was no longer limited to random acquaintances. . . . It sounded liberating; it was supposed to make it easier for people to find the ‘right’ partner.”

But, she continues,

as most dating app users will know by now, the paradox of choice can be stultifying, especially as these apps hardly allow us to engage meaningfully with the essentially infinite number of strangers we’re presented with.

The result?

Essentially, as a result of the growth of dating apps, rising atomization, and the aftermath of the #MeToo movement, norms have shifted, which has resulted in many young people feeling squeamish about dating friends or friends-of-friends despite this being common practice for older generations.

One 22-year-old woman discussed in the story “explains that she would never swipe right on someone in her social circle” on the grounds that “I don’t know if it’s healthy to have so many friends in common.”

Smith concludes:

Break-ups are always difficult, but break-ups within a friendship group are evidently even more painful. For many Gen Z, it doesn’t even bear thinking about. But by totally writing off people within our social circles, we’re potentially missing out on happy, lengthy, and fulfilling relationships. . . .

Read more at Dazed

More about: America, Arts & Culture, Politics & Current Affairs

 

How America Sowed the Seeds of the Current Middle East Crisis in 2015

Analyzing the recent direct Iranian attack on Israel, and Israel’s security situation more generally, Michael Oren looks to the 2015 agreement to restrain Iran’s nuclear program. That, and President Biden’s efforts to resurrect the deal after Donald Trump left it, are in his view the source of the current crisis:

Of the original motivations for the deal—blocking Iran’s path to the bomb and transforming Iran into a peaceful nation—neither remained. All Biden was left with was the ability to kick the can down the road and to uphold Barack Obama’s singular foreign-policy achievement.

In order to achieve that result, the administration has repeatedly refused to punish Iran for its malign actions:

Historians will survey this inexplicable record and wonder how the United States not only allowed Iran repeatedly to assault its citizens, soldiers, and allies but consistently rewarded it for doing so. They may well conclude that in a desperate effort to avoid getting dragged into a regional Middle Eastern war, the U.S. might well have precipitated one.

While America’s friends in the Middle East, especially Israel, have every reason to feel grateful for the vital assistance they received in intercepting Iran’s missile and drone onslaught, they might also ask what the U.S. can now do differently to deter Iran from further aggression. . . . Tehran will see this weekend’s direct attack on Israel as a victory—their own—for their ability to continue threatening Israel and destabilizing the Middle East with impunity.

Israel, of course, must respond differently. Our target cannot simply be the Iranian proxies that surround our country and that have waged war on us since October 7, but, as the Saudis call it, “the head of the snake.”

Read more at Free Press

More about: Barack Obama, Gaza War 2023, Iran, Iran nuclear deal, U.S. Foreign policy