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Thread: Do we get what society says it wants or what it actively seeks out?

  1. #1
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
    Apr 2003
    Somewhere between the mountains and the ocean.

    Do we get what society says it wants or what it actively seeks out?

    I was reading a book about the times leading up to the dark ages and a sentence stood out. The people got what they wanted, and it destroyed European society for over 200 years, even though they all said they wanted something else. It got me thinking about what we as a society have and what we want. Often people say they want one thing, but their actions and lack of education cause them to do the opposite.

    For example, if we understood what was in fast food and what it did to us, would we choose to continue to eat it? Many us understand the differences between living in an urban environment, but suburban lifestyle continues to be so popular. We as a society talk about how difficult our financial situation is, but credit card debt continues to increase at alarming rates.

    We donít demand an end to lobbyists and special interest political action committees, but most people agree that they are bad, unless they are representing our interests. We say we want better public transportation and would even campaign to fund it, but too many of those people have never been on a public bus.

    We, as a society, say we want something but most people donít actually do what needs to be done, donít understand what needs to be done, or worse yet, donít understand that something needs to be done. Often times I believe that this is because of a lack of education on a particular topic. At a foundational level, I think many of us agree on the fundamental rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. But it is how we achieve those, and even what those mean is where our paths separate.

    Why do you think this paradox happens? Do you think we have a lack of education or communication? Or as a society are we just too apathetic to actually take action until the pain of staying the same exceeds the pain of change.

    I have heard it said ďYour actions speak so loudly, your words I cannot hear.Ē
    If you want different results in your life, you need to do different things than you have done in the past. Change is that simple.

  2. #2
    Dec 2008
    the delta
    I think it's a case of "I'll let someone else do it". We all want good things but we wait for someone else to accomplish them. We all want to end hunger yet we all throw food away, waste money on frivolous things, etc. We'll let someone else sacrifice for the cause.

  3. #3
    Jul 2007
    more West now
    Leadership & Education

    People in society are not able to look out for anyone but themselves unless they have good leadership that leads them to doing things for the 'greater good'

    For example, do I personally like war, no, but I realize it is for the greater good that we defend our borders and preempt potential attacks on us.

    Another example, do I personally like needles being stuck in me, no, but I realize it is for the greater good that people get immunized against communicable diseases.

    So why do I realize these societal benefits? it is my education or leadership to pass certain legislation to require a military, immunization, etc. I would say it boils down to leadership, because with leadership, we wouldn't have the education system in place today that taught me to be part of society.

  4. #4
    Nov 2009
    The Glass City
    I believe it is a lack of education and, as stroskey hinted at, just plain laziness and lack of responsibility.

    Whether we like to acknowledge it or not, humanoids tend to have a herd mentality. A rare few are brave enough to take the first steps, but once a critical mass has finally mobilized, the majority of the herd goes with the flow. However, if that critical mass is never reached, the herd just keeps chewing curd and maintaining the status quo.

    My 2 cents.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
    May 2004
    Short answer to your question: Neither
    Children in the back seat can cause accidents - and vice versa.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Richmond Jake's avatar
    Aug 2001
    The Emerald Coast
    Please delete this post. Thanks.
    Last edited by Richmond Jake; 14 Sep 2011 at 7:30 PM. Reason: I'm an idiot.
    Annoyingly insensitive

  7. #7
    Cyburbian btrage's avatar
    May 2005
    Metro Detroit
    McDonald's is bad. I eat it. I should probably go for a run then.
    "I'm very important. I have many leather-bound books and my apartment smells of rich mahogany"

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