We’re disgusted by society. Disgust isn’t enough. A social media rant solves nothing. Society is a reflection of what we stand for as consumers. As long as we continue to accept it, the status quo and what is mainstream in our culture is merely a reflection of us.
As long as we continue to accept (or be indifferent to) the behaviors that disgust us the most, we will continue to find our attitudes reflected by the media. We’re appalled at the NFL players who openly disrespect our flag, and yet we have given them this platform. We continue to look on in dismay but are unwilling to change our behavior. I admit, this is much easier to say than to act upon, but when our attention is given as much value as it has been given in today’s data-driven world, we have more power than we realize. We’re just unwilling to use it.
Professional sports, mainstream media, pop-culture — everything we subscribe to as Americans is fueled by our adulation and idolization of the almighty dollar. And we’re bought into it, which continues to fuel the patterns and behaviors that we’ve allowed to become billion-dollar industries.
If we really want to raise our standards, as a society, it will begin with raising our standards as individuals. And, in turn, holding our elected officials accountable to the standards we believe are right for our communities.
If we’re not willing to take a stand, and we’re just going to continue filling social media news feeds with rants that will not change anything, and will be drowned out by the noise, then we are contributing to the problem. Whether we realize it or not, our dissatisfaction is just making it worse. We have to find a way to change the rules. We have to demand something to change, and we have to be willing to sacrifice something to get there.
Is it too simplistic to suggest that the solution lies in love, acceptance, and finally ending bigotry — in our neighborhoods and elementary schools? Could the next generation of superstars be different? I believe we are responsible for finding out.