Who Can The Kids Look Up To?

Dear Ron,

Don’t you think that society is going awry?  I mean aren’t we a nation of celebrity hounds? Take the case of Michael Jackson. People worshipped the ground he walked on and they will now worship even more the ground the ground he is be buried under. He is just a singer, isn’t he? Yes, he is (sorry, was) a terrific entertainer, but come on! He is not the Messiah. I feel that we idolize the wrong people. It is not good for our children. What message are we sending to them?

An Inquiring Mind

Dear An,

You really want me to put on my thinking cap, don’t you?  I will go to the closet and try to find it. I found it, but it is a little stained. I will put it on anyway. It’s on. I hope it doesn’t fall off. Okay. Here goes.

Are we a nation of celebrity hounds? The answer to that question is yes, we are. Is society going awry? The answer to that question is full-on yes. Is Michael Jackson just a singer? That one is hard to call. He also danced, didn’t’t he?

Are we sending the wrong message to our children? I cannot say that we are. Who do you think they ought to look up to if not Michael Jackson, the grocer with the gamey leg?  The insurance man who uses too much Old Spice?  The mother who over breastfeeds her children? There are not too many idols anymore.  Even Nelson Mandela worshipped Michael. Nelson, I understand,  admired  Michael’s new nose.

Back in my own youth, there were people around you could look up to. There was Moses. There was Jesus. There was the Buddha. We got down on our little boney knees and we prayed to these people. We asked them for better bicycles. We asked them for longer recesses.  We begged them for better parents.

When was the last time you saw a kid on his knees  in prayer?  Most of them  are too occupied slaughtering the innocent at their play stations or fressing heaps of cholesterol at the local drive-by, or perfecting some version of an auto-erotic asphyxiation technique.  Not to mention the ones who are dreaming about the perfect tattoo.

I would say with a liberal dose of certainty that the kids have already been sent the message, the one that has passed on the info that the best Saturday night gig is is at a fuzzy house at the outskirts of Limbo, where they may partake of cartoons starring Dweezlebub , while injecting rat poison into their veins, all chaperoned, of course, by Mother Monster and her paramour, Tontoesque.

I wouldn’t worry about wacko Jacko stopping off to make his intentions clear. They have heard it all before in their wired world. The cat is out of the microwave at last and not too badly singed either. Have them slice her up and throw her down with a little bourbon.

Who are the young ones supposed to look up to if not a sucked out boy-man who just loves to dance a jig while throwing money  at priceless possessions?  Michael, like Jesus, always said he loved us, and at least Michael never had a beard. Let’s all just kiss and go to sleep.


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