This I Believe

Ashley - Jacksonville, Florida
Entered on July 6, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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This I Believe

I believe that society is becoming morally apathetic due to the influences of media, economy and a general me first attitude that people have adopted. As the time goes by and I become older, I realize that the events happening in our world are not what I expected civil societies to be like. Every time I turn on the television or radio, all I seem to hear about is a robbery or a child getting raped or adolescents getting exposed to drugs or running away from home. The poor economic conditions also contribute to the degradation of society and our government is so wrapped up in being the world’s peacekeeper that they fail to see what’s best for our nation; they only care about what is best for their wallets. We have given up on being compassionate, patient and understanding, and traded that in for being greedy, demanding and aggressive towards one another. It appears that more acceptance of inappropriate material in the media and a poor economy that causes people to financially struggle makes people behave in ways that serve themselves before others. If society as a whole does not change the way it regards moral ethics, things will only continue to get worse for us all.

Crime and drugs are more prevalent now, more than they have ever been. It seems that the age of people committing crimes and getting involved in drugs is becoming younger and younger. Our country’s children are not getting enough positive attention, and many parents seem to be giving up on their responsibilities as parents to teach morals and ethics. Many children feel like they have to commit crimes, turn to drugs or run away from home to get the attention they need, even if it is negative attention. Another problem is the way our media advertises products, of which many have sexual overtones. The violent themes in music videos and video games also make it very hard for children to understand what is right and what is wrong. If children see something on television then they becomes desensitized to the violence. Part of the solution I believe is to change our approach in parenting to a more hands on approach, and we should take steps to make sure the video games our children play are much less violent.

Poor economic conditions in the United States also negatively impacts society’s morality. The United States is the richest nation in the world yet many of its citizens remain poor. This causes those that find it hard to earn enough to pay living expenses to lessen their standards and commit crimes to support themselves or their family. Gas prices have skyrocketed to an all time high and many have to choose between buying gas and buying groceries. The cost of food, gas, mortgage payments and car payments make it difficult for America’s youth to be financially independent. Our government could do more to help as well, but seem more interesting in spending money on flexing our political muscle by being the world’s peacekeeper. When so many in the United States are living below the poverty line, how can the government spend and send so much to other countries before taking care of its own? We all have the same struggles with financial issues and having to work all the time to barely keep up with the bills. So why are we not more understanding towards one another?

Due to these reasons, everybody seems to be only concerned with themselves these days, and I feel like everyone around me has adopted a self serving attitude. Many people I know say how they contribute to the morals and ethics of society, but I believe their actions speak louder than words. Honestly, how many people would actually pull over to help someone in distress on the road without knowing them, or help someone in what appears to be assault? People are afraid to get involved due to the ramifications they fear for doing so; being a Good Samaritan can get a person hurt or can have legal issues that can affect them negatively. People fail to see that we are all going through the same things in life, so we should treat each other with kindness and respect.

With the progress that we as a society have made, it seems that there has also been an overall regression of people’s standards concerning their morals and ethics. There are more and more crimes being committed with more lenient punishment. Young people turn to drugs and dangerous behaviors due to lack of parental attention. The media only amplifies the problems with a lack of regulating the violent and sexual content of programming. The poor economic conditions cause people to resort to desperate and illegal activities to help support them when there just isn’t enough money to make ends meet. The government seems to have turned a blind eye to the problems of its own citizens. We all need to remember that we are all faced with the same challenges in keeping up in this world so we should treat one another with respect and understanding. If society does not change the way it regards moral ethics, things will only continue to get worse for us all. I believe that if we all do our part to stop the erosion of our society’s morals and ethics, then we may be able to make a real difference in they way our future generations will live in this world.