Monday, March 7, 2016

TV's Children

Does capitalism have your children’s best interests at heart? Do you ever feel the need to protect them from what is shown on corporate-owned television, to restrict their young eyes not only from the programming itself but from the commercials?

Do you think the foods that are little more than sugar and processed flour are a result of anything other than the capitalist’s desire to prey on the young and the helpless, or do you actually think it is the fault of parents that children are facing an epidemic of obesity and diabetes?

I watched another of those video clips the other day about college students who couldn’t tell you who won the Civil War and yet could name who Brad Pitt was married to and what show Snookie was on. Like everyone else I was shockingly disappointed by the results and yet I shouldn’t have been surprised.

You see, a lot of people in their disgust blame the youth of today. They blame the education system, the government, the liberals, etc. But what those people are missing is the fact that they know what society teaches them. They are not ignorant, they have learned what society has told them is important. And what society tells them is that Snookie and the love lives of celebrities are important.

After all, we could have a different system if we wanted to. We could have media that actually teaches us something worth knowing. We could have a history channel that has programming about history, an arts and entertainment channel that has actual art and artists on it, or a music channel that deals with music. We could have whatever kind of media we want; it is a free country, we should decide.

But that’s not what we have. We are constantly being told that we live in the society we wanted, that our society is the result of our decisions. And yet the world is not what we want it to be. Why is that? Are we stupid? Assuredly we have our flaws, our weaknesses and are capable of being distracted by things not so important to us. Yes, we are imperfect, but that is not the whole story.

The fact is, our weaknesses are being played upon. There are those who work very hard and are paid very well to make sure we don’t focus on what is best for us but instead become distracted by that which is not vital to us. They are artists when it comes to playing upon our baser instincts, our sexual urges, our insecurities, and a myriad of other shortcomings. They manipulate us—there is no other term for it—into becoming pliable consumers willing to buy what they are selling.

And you cannot lay that at the feet of anyone other than the capitalists who own our media, who for the better part raise our children because they have taught us it is our duty to be at work rather than with them. We do our best to instill in them human values rather than corporate values but the television, the radio, and now a host of other media have far more of their time and attention than we ever will. We can try to keep them in a bubble, and some of us do, but they will not be able to avoid those others of their generation, the majority, that have been raised with values that are alien to the human race. Corporate values.

They cleverly tie cute cartoon creatures with sugary treats, designer labels, and violence. They hyper-sexualize adolescence and brand them when they are young so that by the time they are adults, they will not even see the cage that has built for them.

Aldous Huxley saw it clearly enough in 1931, put it all down for us to read in Brave New World. He saw the manipulation of young minds so that the adults they grew into would be incapable of thinking outside of established parameters. And you can bet that advertisers envisioned it too. Of course they did not see the damage it would cause, their narrow vision only saw the profit they could make from such a system. They pursued it the way any unthinking creature in an excited state pursues its prey. And they were very good at what they did.

So the next time you see people knowing nothing about their history and everything about the Kardashians, let it be known that our education system, the real one, the one that is fully funded, is doing its job capably.

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