September 11, 2008

How bad are prevalent lies of Omission?

Posted in America, Fads, family, hope, Humor, Integrity, lie of the day, life, opinion, Personal, Religion, responsibility, Society, Trends tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 1:42 am by jimwilbur

Being an American, this is what I have noticed about lies of omission:

  • Every decade seems to encourage certain lies of omission and every decade seems to permit or encourage certain truths to be told.
  • in the 1960’s young people were encouraged to tell the truth about their disdain for ‘authority’ and the ‘establishment’. This truth infected the society at large and there was a general disdain for authority and the ‘establishment’. Certain truths are also discouraged during each generation. In the 1960’s, people were discouraged from expressing patriotism or traditional religious beliefs.
  • During the 1970’s people of all ages were encouraged to tell the truth about how much they liked sex. This truth also infected the society at large. Adult theaters called ‘Pussy Cat theaters’ were common in most towns as were nude bars, etc. ‘Open marriage’ was a common concept and there were many main stream movies that promoted these kinds of ideas like ‘Bob, Carol, Ted and Alice’. The one night stand was considered a normal, socially acceptable relationship. Prudishness about sex was discouraged. Divorce was encouraged. Therapists would commonly encourage people to get a divorce if there was any dissatisfaction expressed during counseling sessions.
  • in my opinion, the 1980’s showed signs of overt manipulation of peoples values, wherein citizens were bombarded via TV and radio with government  promotion of a return to traditional Family and Christian values. This came about at a time when most people were already fed up with many of the excesses of the 1960’s and 1970’s that were impacting our society in negative ways and this bombardment had a strong effect.
  • The 1990’s seemed to be about Globalization, multicultural-ism, Big Box Retail Stores, Windows95 and, leveling the playing field. It was a new post cold war world we lived in. The conservative values fostered in the 1980’s by the Reagan Administration seemed to take root during this period. There was this idea of ‘tough love’ floating around.
  • This new American Century was marked and largely defined by 911, Anti-Terrorism, War and rising prices. The brand of conservative family values and christian values so heavily promoted in the 1980’s during the Reagan Administration and after 911, becomes a fundamentalist force to be reckoned with by those who would favor liberty and democracy over an authoritarian and theocratic interpretation of the primary founding documents of America, our Declaration of Independence, our Constitution and, our Bill of Rights. 
  • This is what confuses me so about having lived through these nearly 5 decades: If you were to follow the life course of average American’s that I have known, you would find a majority of people who used drugs in the 1960’s and called the police ‘pigs’, who in the 1970’s got divorced or cheated on their partners or participated in ‘group gropes’. You would find many of these same people in the 1980’s, seeing themselves as Christian Conservatives who believe in ‘traditional values’ and who by the time the 1990’s came around, would not admit to having been hippies in the 1960’s and/or swingers in the 1970’s. Then after 911, these same people changed once more to some kind of person I hardly recognize as an American or even a friend.
  • Then there are people like me. I was slightly influenced by each decade but never gave in to the excesses of what became normal behavior in each decade, including this one. I carry forward the parts of each decade that influenced me. Those influences make me who I am today, which is way outside the mainstream. Not hippie, not swinger, not traditional, not authoritarian. I am a quienticential product of the American way – not a product of any given decade I have survived.
  • In my opinion, there are lies of omission about the personal transformations most middle age Americans have gone through to ‘fit in’ during some of these rather bizarre periods of radical transformations in American culture. I think that if middle age Americans started being honest about who they really are rather than pretending and going with the flow of these ‘movements’ (and I think this ‘New American Century’ after 911 IS just another ‘movement’) we would see that America is not what it pretends to be now. I am not sure what America is and, I can only speak only from the perspective of my unique generation, but I think all this pompous authoritarian fundamentalist stuff at least when worn by Americans over the age of 50 is not flattering considering their ‘real’ histories and is a dangerous pretense that hides a generation of adults who are too easily influenced and have few core values that can withstand peer pressure. I think if tomorrow, the majority of people started calling the police – ‘pigs’, these same conservative old people would go with the flow and do the same things they have done in the past, they would start seeing me as ‘establishment’ rather than liberal because I would be supporting the police and think these instant liberals were jerks.
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