I think it's a reasonable question.
And while yes, there was a time when if you lost 10% of your hives, that was considered a bad year, it does not translate into doom and gloom. Just perhaps a bit of reality beyond buying into each and every thing coming down the street being marketed, making it seem if you buy this or do that, you will never have a problem. frustration for many new beekeepers is when they lose bees and seemingly don't understand why.
I think many are successful in beekeeping. Today to be successful, you need to be way beyond the beekeeper of yesteryear. Knowing the impacts of what your bees come into contact, sustainable management, and being the best beekeeper you can be, is a must!
Beekeepers today understand the problems in the industry and the hardship faced. Most do it as their way of helping the environment, because they enjoy the bees, and if they get some honey from time to time, that is a good thing also.
If your getting into bees with some idea that you will make lots of money, will harvest 150 pounds per hive like years ago, or that you can figure out what kills bees and never have a hive die......don't even start!
Get into bees with a full understanding of what is required, and what the returns will be. Not just in dollar terms or pounds of honey. But through your contributions of helping the bees, the wonders of beekeeping, and perhaps being part of what is happening around you. I would keep bees even if I never got honey or made a dollar. It goes beyond that.
I know that bees are like chickens. I know due to how much feed I buy, how much time I take caring for them, that my eggs are WAY MORE expensive than anything I could buy at the market. But I feel a sense of something that is hard to describe. I like my eggs and the sense of self reliance. That my garden, by bees, my chickens, are more than how many pounds or how many eggs I get.
Beekeepers are a special group. Hard to explain. But they do it for the bees.