I would agree with Metatron about the overall state of mankind; I think the simplest and most effective way to make the point is to ask any fundamentalist doomsayer whether he would have preferred to have been born 100 or 200 hundred years ago.
Yet, it's impossible to dismiss the evidence that this present situation presents several unique, historically unprecedented threats to the survival of man on this planet. Nuclear proliferation for one; the stress of explosive population growth on the earth's resources, especially that exerted on the supply of potable water; and the intractable answer to dealing with the aspirations of the so-called Third World to elevate its standard of living to match our own, are two others.
Bear in mind that we westerners, especially us Americans (perhaps 5% of the world's population), have achieved ours by consuming 95% of the globe's energy resources. So the attainment by the Third World of any living standard remotely approaching our own would wreak unprecented havoc on man and on the planet. How then do we Westerners, century-long despoilers of the environment, turn to the have-nots of the world and say ``forget it" when it comes to their hopes of attaining significant Quality-of-Life improvement?
For these and other reasons, this generation and the planet it calls home is on a historically unprecedented collision course with its existence.