There is no denying it. In this era of instant gratification and fame for nothing, it has become so easy for society to reward the lazy man. Is this good? Absolutely not. Growing up, we are taught that hard work, doing the right thing, and respecting your fellow man is the key to success in life. If this is true, then why are we rewarding laziness left and right? Well, unfortunately, the good work ethic and high morals for a person is an old-fashioned way of thinking. In this day and age, the more negative, vindictive, sarcastic, and lazy you are, the more attention and praise you are going to get. You think I’m making this up? All you need to do is turn on the TV, open a newspaper, or look at the magazines on the newsstand at your local supermarket. How many ‘celebrities’ are famous for absolutely no reason? And on top of that, how many of them exhibit negative, despicable personalities that decades ago would have been shunned? This is becoming a serious problem, and I think we as a society really need to take a step or two back and re-evaluate our lives and what we hold as standards for ourselves to look at.
In the past year alone, celebrities such as Jon and Kate Gosselin, Nadya Suleman (the Octomom), Balloon Boy, and most recently, the Salahis (the couple who crashed the White House dinner), have been dominating the media. What do these people have in common you ask? Simple, they all became famous for no reason other than the fact that each and every one of them wanted a ‘free ride’. Jon and Kate started to have marital problems and that is when we as a society started to pay attention. Kate gets photo shoots with high end fashion magazines and Jon is the subject of every major news media for the past year. On top of all of this, how many other large families are rewarded with a reality show and money to raise their families? How about we start shows chronicling the lives of families who have been hard hit by the recession and are struggling to put food on the table for their families? Or those that have lost loved ones and are trying to rebuild their lives under the most grim circumstances? THOSE are the people I want to see on the magazine covers, not some lazy woman on welfare who decided to take fertilization drugs so she could have tons of kids just like Angelina Jolie and get all of our attention, as in the case of Nadya Suleman. In cases like this, it is no wonder that kids grow up thinking that all they have to do is act out and they will be rewarded. Heck, Balloon Boy’s dad pulled the biggest hoax of the year in hopes that he would be given a reality show! That right there is proof of how our society rewards laziness and deceit.
I may be just one lone voice, but America I am begging you to step back and really take a long, hard look at yourselves. What do you really value in life? Personally, I choose not to watch shows about people who want something for nothing, but rather pay attention to the hard working people around me: single moms, the dad who has been laid off and is working at McDonald’s just to put food on the table, teachers, road crew workers, doctors, those who really ARE trying to make a difference in someone’s life and work hard for their place in society. Our grandparents and great-grandparents survived the Great Depression and World War 2, not to mention many other trying times in our history that we as a society comfortably living in the 21st Century will never be able to comprehend. Through hard work, sacrifice, determination and a true belief in morals and values this generation was known as The Greatest Generation, and frankly I think that our current generation really needs to take a page out of their book. Desperately.