Living in America, we have grown up in a society and culture that esteems money above meaning, fame above investing in the lives of others, physical attractiveness and sexual appeal (to the extent of extreme methods like plastic surgery and eating disorders) above richness of heart, hook-ups instead of the sacredness of sex in a committed marriage, empty chatter above deep conversation, and having fun above setting goals and taking daily steps to reach them.
We have been taught from a young age that being different or standing out from the crowd is bad, while following the crowd even to the point of idiocy is what we should strive for. Gossips, immature people, and those who take pleasure in making others feel less than are what make up the term "popularity" while people who care about others and have deep-thinking minds are viewed upon with contempt as if they need to pull their lives together and jump on the bandwagon of being fake, demeaning, and shallow.
People with mental illness are ostracized, made fun of, and misunderstood.
Playing sports has taken the place of learning life skills. Adults esteem winning on a team or attaining financial security above character development and training their children to live for so much more than just themselves.
We live for our own gratification yet rarely stop to ponder the reality that it is wasting the life we have been given.
Entertainment is often a pointless and dirty time-waster while reading books and watching documentaries that edify the mind and enable overall growth is seen as boring and is typically avoided at all costs.
We have lowered the bar for what constitutes building/leaving a legacy and praised the rich for leaving their possessions and homes to selfish, coddled children when these are but temporary and could easily be lost through theft, fire, or earthquake.
We have lost the art of intellectual conversation and mock those as random and weird who aren't content with empty discussion.
We harm ourselves as a collective whole through poor diet and a lack of exercise, holding laziness in high regard.
Binge-watching TV shows and playing computer games has taken the place of playing or exploring outside for our children/youth.
We live for the fun of the weekend and complain each weekday that we have responsibilities.
We refuse to grow up and take initiative in bettering our futures.
We waste money or accumulate debt by trying to "keep up with the Joneses".
We see intelligent people as nerds and we worship celebrities. We use slang terms and emojis to express how we feel while rarely if ever study resources or read the dictionary to ameliorate our vocabulary.
We have grown accustomed to comfort and will stop seemingly at nothing to attain pleasure.
We run from the past, live for the present, and do not plan for the future.
We waste our time with people, places, hobbies, and entertainment that brings little benefit.
We have redefined freedom to mean doing whatever we want, however we want, whenever we want, with whomever we want and yet do not consider where such a lifestyle will lead us and the painful consequences it will leave behind.
... and we wonder why the nation, our families and individual lives are falling apart at the seams.
Where are the parents? Where are the challenges? Where is the accountability?
Where has self-respect gone? Why has self-esteem taken its place?
A noble life and striving to become a productive citizen of society that impacts the world around us and leaves an indelible mark on this earth has been replaced with irresponsibility, depraved indulgences, and a lack of wisdom.
We are destroying ourselves day by day yet care little. Similar to the frog in the pot of water whose heat is slowly turned up ultimately culminating in the amphibian's death, we too are killing ourselves with comfort and ease.
How I long for something more!