Well, that’s only partially true. While I do occasionally get depressed about the state of our world, and while I do consider myself both Goth-ish and intellectual, I rarely get into the “I don’t care” mentality. If I were brooding about something, it would hardly be because I didn’t care about it, right?
Webster’s defines nihilism as: “a viewpoint that traditional values and beliefs are unfounded and that existence is senseless and useless .”
I would argue that traditional values and beliefs have some place in our society (even if that place is simply to help people define what they are not) as long as the fundamental freedoms our Constitution guarantees are placed foremost — that is, you can have your traditional beliefs and values as long as you can’t legally dictate that they be mine.
I would also argue that existence is neither senseless nor useless and that thinking so is taking the easy way out. Going that route would allow me the privilege of not taking responsibility for my actions in this world, and of not having to respond to things that are wrong.
In the larger sense of being connected to everything, and as a Pagan I believe that, the point to my existence is to be a part of the world community. Not just the human community, but the Earth community. I play a part in that community, and I refuse to believe that the part I play is to destroy it.
So while yes, I like Goth stuff and some of the more radical political ideas put forth by the Punk movement, and maybe I like to read Nietzche, it doesn’t mean I want to become a terrorist. In today’s world, it seems more revolutionary to work from within the system than to bomb it (either literally or figuratively) from the outside. Everyone’s doing that.