Monday, January 10, 2011

We Are Cultural Schizophrenics

We have become cultural schizophrenics. On one hand we decry the violence that occurred Saturday in Arizona. On the other hand we love "violence" as entertainment. We love it, I say! We pay big bucks to watch violence at the theaters and in our living rooms.

Our heroes punch each other, beat each other to a pulp. stab, shoot, kill and nobody gets arrested. Nobody goes to jail. No consequences.

Isn't that a bit unrealistic?

If I slap my neighbor in the face I can be charged with assault. If I slap my toddler, I can lose my kid to the system. (I'm too old for toddler is in her 30s, but you get the picture.)

But not in Hollywood. No, Sirree. In the movies there is no consequence to breaking someone's nose. Nor killing in the most vile way. If the killing is done by the "hero", the "hero" goes away unbothered by the consequences of his action. If the violence is done by the "bad guy", well, then the solution is that the "good guy" kills the "bad guy". And the "good guy" doesn't even come under investigation for his action!

Folks! That is not Reality!

I'm wondering...when is Hollywood going to step up to the plate and recognize the great impression they have on young, impressionable minds who are sitting in front of the TV without parental supervision.

You say, "But...the parents are supposed to supervise and explain and discuss and blah, blah, blah."

I say, "Where is the village in this scenario?" Where is our society teaching our children the ramifications of using violence against one another? Parents and teachers tell them one thing (don't hit!) and television tells them another (hitting and killing solves problems). You figure out which will have the stronger message.

We have accepted into our midst the glorification of violence. We've let Hollywood teach our children as to what is acceptable behavior towards one another. We sit passively by and say, "It's only a movie."

And, lest we be accused of that dirty word "censorship", we swallow it all...hook, line and sinker. We have a knee-jerk reaction to a false concept of "censorship". God forbid that we censor. We have a right, after all, to say/write/portray anything we want. It's in the First Amendment, right? Isn't that right?

And yet we do censor. We censor anyone who threatens the President or a Member of Congress. We censor anyone who says the word "bomb" in an airport. (Try that one and see how much freedom of speech you have.) We censor calling each other certain names. We censor the words coming out of a first-grade teacher's mouth. If that teacher uses profanity (especially repeated profanity) that teacher will be out of a job. We censor a loud filthy mouth in a family restaurant. We stop the ruckus by calling the police and charging him with disturbing the peace.

Even Mark Twain is being censored! We Do Censor!

And while we condemn children calling each other names (bullying) in the school setting, we don't dare "censor" the television programs where insults, name-calling, hitting, killing are all done in the name of "entertainment". After all, if we were to do that, we'd be limiting someone's "free speech rights", someone's "creativity".

Don't you think it odd that "censorship" has become as holy as the Holy Grail?

And isn't it odd that "morality" has become a dirty word?

Am I crazy, or has the entire society turned itself upside down?

P.S. When a bookstore refuses to sell the crummy book you wrote last week...well, that is NOT censorship. NOT!

Today's Verse is Isaiah 5:20. Click on the reference to read the verse...unless you consider the Bible worthy of censorship, that is.



Diane said...

That verse from Isaiah is a perfect reflection of the tactics Satan is using today. We are glorifying sin the name of "freedom" while we simultaneously demonize anything having to do with personal responsibility or faith.

Um - my word verification is "dies sip" - can't be a coincidence!

S. Etole said...

No, you're not crazy!!!

Debby said...

No, WhiteStone, it is not you. The world has gone crazy. Everyone seems to think that we are somehow immune to the consequences of our behavior, but we are not. We will reap what we sow. In fact, the harvest is currently being gathered.

Persis said...

Well said. What a sick and sad world we live in. May God have mercy.

Young Mom said...

Exactly right.

Except, you can still slap your toddler, and you can buy christian parenting books that tell how to do it step by step in the name of God. And that baffles me even more than the rest.

WhiteStone said...

Ah, Young Mom. I hear you. I've seen some of that garbage, too, in book form. Children have died at the hands of parents following those false concepts.

Nancy said...

This is an excellent post! You are not crazy. I don't see things changing because it's all about what sells and violence sells. I do think ultimately parents need to be responsible for what they allow their young children to watch. After a certain age it isn't really possible to control that. Also, I have two boys (actually they're men now, but they've been playing such games for years) who do play some of "those" video games, so it's all about balance and still teaching core values you think are important. My big issue here is gun control. Don't get me started on that!

Karen said...

This is so true, WhiteStone! Your post sums up the problems of this fallen world very well. But, as much as we dislike this trend, I have to remind myself that nothing can happen without our Lord's hand in it. Nothing.

Alli said...

We live in a world of political correctness, violence possibly influenced by media. You bully someone so you put it on Youtube to see how many hits you receive. No concern what damage you may have done.. part of another day. An older lady lays on the ground screaming at 2:00am she was suffering from Dementia. No one went to her Aid Neighbours heard her but went back to sleep, they found her a few hours later frozen to death on someone's driveway.

We are losing our kindness mostly our humanity....

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

My kids are reading Wayside School is Falling Down... a crazy tale about a backward school. I think, perhaps, we could write one about our nation as well!

I'm raising a second generation of kids over here; the first seemed much easier (I was very careful about tv, movies, music, etc.). I still try and be selective about what they're seeing, but it's more "out there" now than ever.

As for myself, I suppose I've a greater tolerance for violence I see on television; still and yet, I could barely make it through the recent video series we watched "The Pacific." At least there, the moral dilemma regarding "taking a life" was dealt with to some degree.

Yes, we're upside down about a lot of things... we may have gone so far that we don't even recognize it!

Great pondering here. Hope you are well.


Debra said...

Hello hello-The world is yuk-o, and has been since Adam and Eve. I thought about the Roman 'games'-now there's real entertainment for TV tube to separate you from the gore and blood-it's right in front of ya! And people cheered! Yeesh.
I guess it starts with each one of us.

Karin said...

Excellent post - and big bucks are paid to those who play violent parts. Oh, God have mercy on us!