When the basic necessities are met, humans tend to take up the task of persecuting. This is not 21st century problem; it probably started when humans decided to live in groups and form community and society. We have not evolved enough to live with disagreements. This urge to belong to a society and at the same time harmonize that society, leads us to penalize those whom we don't understand and agree with.
As I see, there are non-issues which are mostly individual's choice in life; and then there are issues which arise out of our personal interactions or simply living in a group/society. However, we are determined to make issues out of non-issues and pretend to un-see the real ones.
Now, if we look at real issues in our society today, like poverty, human abuse and racism - they arise out of our co-existence. We tend to look away when these real issues are around us. Most people do understand and acknowledge the real issues, but instead of collectively working towards a solution we take the easy way out. We treat real issues as background noise and drown it out by discussing non-issues at our loudest voice.
I don't mean we shouldn't discuss non-issues at all. Do discuss them but in an amicable way and purely for analyzing and understanding purpose only; but not with animosity and mud-throwing-way of discussion or action. Instead use the same energy and fervor on real issues and try to come up with, even a smaller step to resolve those real issues. Collective minds with a positive energy brings progress.