No, not so much the political direction as the social direction! While we’ll admit up front that no country is perfect and pure, we feel that the United States of the last 50-100 years was a more reasonable and uplifting society than the direction it is taking today.
Many reasons abound for this turn to the more harsh nature of society. Some blame the fast pace of life, communicated so quickly these days. Others maintain life started to be more complicated when two adults in a household began holding jobs, with less time for mothers with their children. Others point to the high rate of fathers not in the homes, and the growing promiscuity in society.
Let’s take a look at some of the baser aspects of our society today:
Coarseness of society: You see this everywhere, no longer a society with reasonable decorum, but one where people seek to expand on the shock value in so many ways: language, dress, personal relationships, habits, and yes, addictions. Obviously, none of these are tasteful elements that make us proud.
Rudeness: Good manners are out the window, possibly forever. Decent consideration of others is often unknown. This takes forms such as in conversation, and in interruption during conversations, pushing and shoving in crowds, talking too loud, and yes, incessant loud carrying on of cell telephone conservations in public places to the annoyance of all. No doubt you can think of more.
Violence and barbarous aggressiveness: We see it in everyday muggings, robbery, home invasions, smashing of store windows and incidental criminal diversions in public. Young thugs act as hardened criminals with no regard for the individual, whether man, woman or child. You wonder if all these video games, where wanton destruction and rampage takes place, have produced a society where such violence is almost incidental.
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What’s missing in society these days? Some simple activities. Among them:
Ordinary civility: Perhaps we’ll never get back to the simple times of bygone days, but if we do, it will be because people took the time to be civil and courteous, to be kind to one another. It means holding the door open for someone, or actually listening to what others say, and to give others your attention in a deliberate manner. We may have descended too much; it may not be possible.
Cheerfulness and good humor: These two attributes are the result, we think, of being brought up right. A smiling, happy childhood will result in a better adult, we maintain. We’re not talking of comedic humor. We’re talking about a good outlook on life, with rampant outgoing cheerfulness. That’s an important quality in the development of a solid, mature person.
Courage: It takes a strong individual to stand up for what’s right, no matter if on the sandlot field, or in the corporate world. We see this all too seldom, as people “don’t get involved” when often they ought to be pointing out truths! Those who speak up rise to the challenge to benefit overall society.
Essential elegance and grace: Even the roughest outdoorsman can have it. This bypasses many who never realize what they miss. But for the strongest of the society, they have it, and give the rest of us encouragement with its presence.
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Solutions? Few. Good character must be instilled early in life. Sorry to say, we may have gone down too far in society. We hate to say that, but must be realistic.