As the Candle Burns Lower…

Do you know what really sickens me? Judgement. Every single person on this planet has at some point in their life made a judgement about another person. These judgements are based on the color of our skin, our gender, our features and body types, our cultures, our religions and our values. Some people may walk down a hallway at school and see a group of kids dressed in all black with their hair dyed dark, and gauges and multiple piercings, and think “druggies” or “emo.” Some people walk by a bunch of blonde girls in skirts and heels and automatically think “stupid and popular.” Why?

Well… to be honest I believe we are taught how to judge others. We are bombarded with stereotypes. For instance: have you noticed that in many movies with gangs, the gang members are Hispanic or African American? And have you also noticed that when you watch gang movies and, heaven forbid the gang members are Caucasian, they seem ‘fake’ to you? It doesn’t have to be from mainstream media, either. You can learn it from friends and family. Blonde jokes? Yeah, that’s a stereotype just in case you were wondering. ‘Creepers’? Yeah… stereotype. All Asians look alike? Stereoptype. Where do we get these from? Friends. Neighbors. Family.

And the worst part… the part that makes me so absolutely sick: I do it, too. I see an older man walking by himself on the sidewalk glaring at little kids and I instantly think “ooh he’s creepy!” or I see a bunch of guys in football hoodies at school and think “jocks!”

This is what the media does to us. Media influences our perception of the world and the people around us, and sometimes I’m fairly certain that they are the ones in control of everything. It wouldn’t surprise me. But as media and tabloids become ever more popular and influential, our culture becomes corrupted.

Out of the past have come amazing writers such as Thoreau and Emerson, Dickens and J.D. Salinger, Steinbeck, Harper Lee, Edgar Allan Poe… and let us not forget The Bard: William Shakespeare. The way our culture seems to be turning, away from newspapers and real paper-and-binding books, it seems to me that we are losing what created our culture in the first place. For me, technology will never replace the written word, the smell of the pages of a book, and the feel of the paper between my fingertips. That… that should be the essence of life. But no… even that is fading. Fading into a new world of judgement and obsession over perfection and ‘beauty’ and sex. The candle that is our culture and our society has burned so low that the flame is about to be snuffed out. The question is… what happens then?

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~ by Rckrgrl on January 15, 2010.

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