P. Sunshine

P. Sunshine
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Sunday, September 26, 2004

seriously, now

Some of the blogs that I have read recently have mentioned topics that coincide with the thoughts that keep me awake at night.
I am concerned (ala Steve) about the "dumbing down" of America.
My parents were both teachers, so I grew up in a household where education was a prevalent force. My mom was one of those teachers that most students dreaded getting but later were thankful to have since she made her kids THINK. She later was given a promotion, and became the coordinator of the gifted and talented program at her school district. Not too shabby!

It terrifies me that such horrific things are happening all over the world right now, Russia, Iraq, even Florida, and the news stations and papers and magazines are reporting on....Britney's wedding???

A young girl I know( who shall remain nameless) who is very intelligent indeed, could tell you the name of any character on the Disney channel, what they wore, what their favorite music, color, restaurant, etc., is, but cannot name the major oceans. Her friends all seem to know the latest slang like "shizzle" and "bling bling" but look at me like a crazy woman if I greet them in a foreign language. They are learning their lingo from the big stars, which is scary, since many of the quotes that I have seen from Miss Britney and Xtina contain poor grammar.

Why is our country so obsessed with the rich and famous and their lives? Some say it is an escape from a depressed reality, but really, being Americans, do we have it that bad?
Yes, our economy is in a slump and it is hard to scrape together the cash to pay our bills-seeing as not just blue collar workers but top execs alike are losing their jobs-but what does it mean? We still have running water, even in the trailer parks. We can still wash our clothes indoors, in a washing machine. We can still afford to choose which type of Ramen Noodle to buy. Even at our worst, Americans don't have it that bad. We should count our blessings every day. Yes, even me. I admit, I am guilty of complaining that my wage is not enough, but if I was suddenly transferred to Uganda or even Mexico, I would be considered privileged in their economy.

I thought that 9/11 would bring America back to focusing on what really matters- Life, Liberty, the Pursuit of Happiness, Family, friends - it seemed to go that way, but only for a few months, and then we all "got over it" and the media shifted back to where it had left off - which celebrity is dating which, who is cheating on whom and how much did their fabulous getaway vacation cost? I think those things are interesting to an extent, but I'd like to see the news get back to stories that are newsworthy. Let's try to educate America. We may have more "bling" than other countries, but the rest of the world is ahead of us in culture, attitude and work ethics. We seem to be the spoiled younger sibling country, and it's time for us to mature - our twenties are over. America needs to quit going to the bar and get to work.
(PS - I am a Liberal.)

1 comment:

Allison said...

I have to say that one of the main reasons we are failing as a society here in America is television and the ever growing number of options that we are being given. We as Americans have no need to be concerned over political, global, environmental,(the list just goes on and on) problems because if it is bothersome we can always turn the channel and low and behold there will certainly be some saccrine sweet, bubble gum pop, BS to distract us from the woes of the world and even our own lives.