As Easter approaches, I look forward to watching The Ten Commandments, as I have done since I was a kid; it is truly a great movie. As I was reading an article about how our society is falling, a scene from that movie entered my mind. There is a scene where Moses leads the Israelites into the desert, when Moses goes up to Mount Sinai where he receives the Ten Commandments from God. When Moses returns all the people have become corrupt, getting drunk, having orgies, worshiping golden idols and disrespecting God’s word in every way possible, needless to say, Mosses gets pissed.
Am I alone in seeing the similarities between society today and that scene in the movie? I guess if you are not from the Baby Boomer generation you wouldn’t know how our society has changed, although it has changed dramatically just in the past 20 tears. To me and too many I talk to, society has completely turned upside down, what was right is now wrong, what was wrong is now right. Things like drug use, having children out of marriage, homosexuality are things society frowned upon, but now are celebrated, why they even have reality shows glorifying them. While things like morality, personal responsibility, patriotism and God are now frowned upon.
In the article I was reading, it said; when it comes to personal behavior we have now come to believe that there is no right and wrong. Instead, there are choices. The market facilitates those choices. The State handles the consequences, picking up the pieces when they go wrong. The idea that there may be things we would like to do and can afford to do but which we should not do, because they are dishonorable and a betrayal of trust, has come to seem outmoded. Concepts like duty, obligation, responsibility and honor have come to seem antiquated and irrelevant. Emotions like guilt, shame, contrition and remorse have been deleted from our vocabulary, for are we not all entitled to self-esteem? The still, small voice of conscience is rarely heard these days. Conscience has been outsourced, delegated away.
Sociologist David Riesman, who has argued that we were moving from an inner-directed society to an other-directed one. An inner-directed society is one where people have an internalized sense of right and wrong. An other-directed society is one in which people take their cues from what other people do. Only in the latter can you have a situation in which people say: “If everyone else is doing it, it can’t be wrong.”
In addition, an English philosopher Elizabeth Anscombe, who argued that morality, had become incoherent because we had lost the foundation on which it was built. Words like obligation, belonged to a culture in which people believed that there was such a thing as a divine law: the belief shared by Jews, the Greek Stoics and Christians. Lose this and the words themselves lose their meaning. It is, she said, as if the word criminal remained, when the criminal law had been abolished and forgotten.
The sad part is, we have only ourselves to blame, somehow political correctness is now so engrained in our society that too many are afraid to speak up for fear of being ostracized. Like moses, I look at society with disbelief, saying, “What the hell happened.”
There is an old joke that said; “Our headaches are over, here comes Moses with the tablets.” I wonder where is our Moses, where is the person that will restore some sanity to our society, that is if it is not too late.
“What Kind Of Society Are We Leaving Our Kids” Available here.
This is one man’s opinion.