American Moral Decline

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Picture a gorgeous landscape of lush green, exotic flowers, and the bluest ocean you have ever seen. The sun gently warms you while you attempt to absorb the explosion of colors around you. Your'e patiently waiting on a Hawiian beach to meet with the love of your life, except your'e not alone. There are fifteen other women also patiently waiting to meet "the love of their life". This is the opening scene for My Antonio, one of the many reality t.v. shows that grace our television sets today. One might claim that this is an example of how the american morale has declined. Trying to find love on national television by having multiple prospects at one time. David Whitman writer of "America Is Not In Moral Decline" contests that the American morale is not one of a declining matter. He continues to go through a list of hand picked facts in the attempt to give his claim value and relevance. Let's take a moment to picture and compare America today with America 50 years ago.

Back in the time era of my parents and grandparents it was not uncommon for the majority of young adults to graduate, find work, get married and start a family of their own. Most of the time they would skip the college drgree and jump right into the grind of the blue collar hard labor, forty hours per week. Mothers would stay home with their children bringing them up in a conservative home with a strong and solid moral code. Back then morals were held high, traditions were respected and integrity was what was fashionable. Divorce was a last resort, drugs were nearly non-existent, and vanity was relished mostly by the rich and famous. The world seemed to have more good-hearted people around.

Now contrary to Whitman's claims America has had a huge downward spiral when it comes to morale. The moral decline has been steadily increasing from generation to generation. Who or what is to blame for the continuous blurring of the line that separates right from wrong? Well, mainstream media surely has had a tremendous impact on shaping social norms, and what is considered to be right. As mentioned before, you can't turn on your t.v. without the influence of dating shows that are saying it's okay to have multiple sexual partners, or being tempted with materialistic objects that are unnecessarily beyond your means. It's as if society is encouraging the young and very impressionable that to be "right" today goes hand in hand with drugs, violence and disturbing sexual habits. Along with the notion that the higher your social strata the better.

Whitman, who is a senior writer for the U.S. News & World Report contests that in comparrison to our predecessors Americans are less likely to take part in negative activities such as drinking and driving, evading taxes, partaking in drug use, random violence and cheating. He also gives few examples of how Americans are showing signs of progress when it comes to principles of proper behavior. Now, what really ignited my fire to disect his article was that he hand picked topics and issues to give his claims a stronger a pressence, but failed to take into consideration the whole picture. While he claims that negative acts are down I can give you a rebuttle for almost all of his claims. Take drinking to excess and driving drunk for example, just a few weeks ago I was out celebrating a birthday with some of my close friends, and by the time I arrived at the B.O.B. in downtown Grand Rapids all but one were quite heavily intoxicated. They were slurring their words, couldn't hold their balance, and despite my attempts to have them stay with me they drove home to Kalamazoo. My sister went to visit friends, and walked in on an intense fight that was due to excessive and underage drinking resulting in some sustained burises and ripped clothing articles. I also personally know a family and a relative who have evaded their taxes, only one has been in trouble for it so far.

Whitman also states that despite fears of random acts of...
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