20081109

Trash TV

I'm not writing to argue one's conscience of what's right and what's wrong with television sitcoms, dramas, and in-betweens. But I am writing to state a well-known phrase, "Trash in, trash out." Simply put, if you allow trash into your eyegate, your eargate, or any other gate of your body, it will process in some form in your life. I think back to my younger days and watching a certain, very popular, sitcom and basing my decision for a first-kiss on that fictitious character's decision. She was younger than I and I rationalized that I was overdue for this precious experience. In retrospect that was perhaps the most, or at least, one of the most dumb methods of making a decision I've ever used. With the exception of that moment, I rarely felt burdened by peer-pressure. I always knew what I didn't want, and I knew what it took to not bring forth that essence; but a simple kiss seemed oh so innocent.
Maturity does not make one immune from letting trash in. It has to be a conscious decision of what is right and what is wrong morally. It has to be set in ethical stone that if God said it is wrong; it's wrong. Rationalizing and compromising Truth is the beginning of moral demise. I've zipped through enough TV teen shows to know that the characters are mere lures for vulnerable teens who naively believe that no consequence goes with adult actions. It's not just TV that's a culprit of moral decay in our society. I recently had an opportunity to borrow a copy of the movie "Juno." At it's end I was totally disappointed and a bit vexed that such a tragic life-event as an unplanned teen pregnancy was given a primrose gloss. Somehow the word unplanned should be eliminated; because no adult parent of sane mind ever tells their teen child to plan on making a baby. The fact that the character in this movie was portrayed to not only flippantly find an adoptive family prior to delivery; but an affluent adoptive family, made me shake my head at this more often than not, false depiction of reality. If adoption were such an easy task, desperate young girls wouldn't find a need to abandon their babies at safe drops. The depiction that the guy was still around at the end; and they had returned to being back-to-normal young teenagers with undisturbed lives really annoyed me. Many who've given a child up for adoption know far too well of the void and longing that comes with this loss. Most young girls know that guys rarely stay with them after this act, leaving them to fend for themselves and their child if they choose to have it; which brings me to another problem I had with this movie. There was a scene where she waddled across the school field with her huge faux-belly as though there were no stigma, or shame associated with her predicament. The fact that they failed to show her having to sign her baby away and just lying in bed, cuddling with the guy!, really sent a false message. A guy might show up in the delivery room; but, when the reality of disposable diaper costs and formula costs, and on and on, sets in; they usually fade into society recreating their lives, leaving this nightmare behind. This movie, and other TV shows that depict young people handling adult situations is frustrating because they never show the characters as poor, unemployed young person, struggling to get a G-E-D; often hopping buses with a toddler in tow. These actors are always shown in perfect mode, driving fine cars, living in fine homes, not hurting for a dime. They're most often never shown having a gynecologist tell them they have some incurable STD or worse yet; HIV. The FCC leniency of today resembles nothing like the laws set forth during my growing-up years. Hopefully stiffer laws protecting the ever-so-vulnerable teen generation will be near the top of the list of President-elect Obama's agenda for change. I end by saying to the young and not-so-young alike; allowing trashy mediums of entertainment to cloud your moral center will ultimately result in real-life compromises of the most devastatingly costly and irreversible kind.