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At the risk of sounding melodramatic, it should be pointed out that the current state of affairs in the world as a whole has become a predicament that can no longer be ignored. It is incumbent upon those who claim idealism and revolution to be their intrinsic liberties to effect a change - to break free from the shackles of oppression and ignorance. Obviously, this reference is being made to not only areas of impoverishment but more specifically to the antithesis of such notions - the United States of America and its "noble" constituents. Occupants or "citizens" of such states are abused and neglected on a daily basis without any knowledge of this tragedy. People of "The West" are simply sedated and force-fed a lifestyle of hedonism, indifference, and opportunism.

To prove the veracity of this idea one must simply look to mainstream culture in general. Children of the West are afforded the luxuries of radio, television, sports, and countless other distractions. Intrinsically, there is little to criticize, but the overemphasis of such notions leads to an obsession that is inherently detrimental to rational thought. Little do members of society realize that these aforementioned "pleasures" are, in essence, manacles of their own making. Luxury in general - not to mention pop culture - is offered to the youth of a society in order to distract them from the atrocious deeds of a government or society that has sworn to protect their general welfare. Children - commonly seen as a fresh and viable beginning - are now seen as uncaring, self-serving puppets of a society that has taken a stranglehold on the once-popular and quickly-fading notions of equality, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The youth of America, encouraged by adults of the same schools of thought, are blinded to the realities of society and are given sports, music, and other forms of entertainment to stifle any residual resistance that may remain from independent thought. Entertainment, when reduced to its simplest terms and offered within reason, is neither life-threatening nor hostile. It is a misuse of these fleeting pleasures that results in a crippled civilization. Society gives children and young adults various forms of entertainment (in the name of culture) in order to preserve the lifestyles of a select few who control and manipulate the country based on their slightest whims.

The select few in question are namely those who control the wealth of Western society. These "overlords" manipulate their subordinates in such a way that a form of slavery manifests itself. Citizens are given the luxuries of cell phones, elaborate homes, and aesthetically refined automobiles. The "catch," however, is often undetected by the seemingly mindless drones of this so-called modern society. People often neglect to mention that their houses will not be paid for until the ripe age of sixty-five; nor do they readily admit that payments on their lovely vehicle have damned them to a life of endentured servitude. Man is confined to the incessant circle of habit - earning enough money to make certain payments and, in turn, to provide a better life for their children. The children themselves are taught that these principles of economics are not only acceptable but "the norm." Capitalism mutates into a freelance laissez-faire philosophy, and other socioeconomic policies are cast aside as being somehow inferior to that which has dominated mainstream society since the inception of these particular dogmas. As a result, society is polluted with a cycle of self-perpetuation that cannot be curtailed without a series of drastic measures. The measures in question are so lofty and idealistic that no one is willing to recognize even the problem itself. In order to fill this void, citizens (including the youths) are offered the aforementioned luxuries (among countless others) to appease a growing sense of discomfort and disarray. Certainly, it is easier to turn up your favorite song than to fight the woes of this world, but it is this indifference and submissive nature that compounds itself per generation, and consequently, circumstances worsen on a regimented scale. This scale is rapidly approaching critical mass, and it is fitting, therefore, that something be done for the sake of propriety.

Such problems, however, are not confined to Western schools of thought - even though this particular geographic region has produced the most pristine example of unchecked opportunism. Other countries are notorious for their expansionism and subsequent "brainwashing" of those indigenous to these areas. Situations vary depending upon the location in question, but ultimately, this outlandish system of dictatorship establishes itself. One can only marvel at the seemingly asinine dreams of other countries to attain a status that the West has gained. Superficially, such a system works surprisingly well, but "The Grand Experiment" (as it is aptly named) is destined to fail due to not only the natural shortcomings of man but to shades of a conspiracy concerning those who desire power by any means necessary. It is almost amusing if one considers the ridiculous attempts that man has made to govern himself since his beginning. One wonders how much benefit can be derived from the so-called progress of generations.

For the time being, man remains content with what he has, and he currently ignores the fact that his seemingly comfortable situation could change at a moment's notice if the current progression of the previously mentioned ideals continues at its horrid pace. Perhaps one should not even criticize the government for what has taken place, as some may assume that present-day officials are somehow detatched from the original intentions of decades ago. It is interesting to note, however, that citizens are continually bombarded with the same sedatives that were used to pacify a once-restless community - perhaps to an even greater extent. Propaganda, militarism, and nationalism remain the heralds of a flawed government, and unfortunately, the situation worsens exponentially. Blame should not be a concern; rather one should attempt to isolate the problem in order to exterminate it and initiate a better standard of living for the common brotherhood. It is my fear, however, that a mass audience will simply turn up their favorite songs in order to drown out the irrevocable hum of a nondescript oppression that has the potential of initiating worldwide ramifications.

J. Adam Brockwell

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