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Outlook on Society Today



In
today’s world, society has already far surpassed the limits and boundaries of
international borders. Like a wildfire sweeping up and surging past everything
before it, the definition of society today encompasses not only the regional
sphere, but also the global arena. In the world of today, where information of
just about everything is within reach of the public domain, information
overload is an almost usual occurrence. There is so much information available
within anyone’s grasp with just a short trip into cyberspace. Unfortunately
though, the current outlook on society in near-future is a rather bleak one, as
opposed to the commonly held fallacy that humanity is currently at its Golden
Age. 




The current generation of
teenagers, who aspire to be the future world leaders in about twenty years, is
tagged the ‘MTV generation’. Countless of youths are hooked on music
entertainment and plagued by an addiction to television. Their whole world
revolves around the single ‘MTV’ channel, and any facts originating there are
treated as gospel. Their penchant for music with highly misleading lyrics (cue
the majority of rap music) or even worse, lyrics which make no logical sense (Hollaback
Girl springs instantly to mind…OC Weekly even did an ‘in-depth’ analysis of it,
mocking its stupidity) have warped their outlook on life. Some hip-hop or rap
music are thus so full of senseless lyrics that it is frankly laughable that
some people actually treat those songs as an art, a creative piece of music or
even ‘enlightening’ music. Besides, some songs are so full of hatred, violence
and misogyny that it does not reflect at all the artiste’s view of the world
around them. Instead, it just serves to fuel the rage of misguided teenagers
and in the process, fattens the bank account of artistes. Sadly, many of these
songs routinely make it to the Top-ten list of songs on MTV, and thus gain
greater airplay compared to other more sane and rational songs. This only
furthers the lies that are fed to the teenagers whose whole world is based
solely on that single channel on television 24-hours a day.




On the other side of the world, in
China,
the government's long-prized one-child only policy to curb the growth of their
population has gone awry. A far sinister and insidious problem that threatens
to derail the progress China
has made thus far has slowly emerged from beneath the shadows. The current
generation of children in China
is now infamous for being spoilt, especially those from middle to upper class
backgrounds. This is largely attributed to them having their own way since
young and generally being over-pampered due to being the only product of a new
generation in the family. From a culture which emphasizes tradition as well as
family lineage, this is indeed a great deal of importance. These children do
not have siblings from whom to learn responsibility, respect, generosity and
manners, and hence do not have a proper foundation of upbringing which ends up
getting some of them into severe trouble further on in life. Their parents are
oblivious to their behavior and continue to splurge on their only child.
Currently, some of these ‘children’ have already entered adulthood and entered
the workplace, giving rise to many articles and reports regarding some of their
lack of a social education.




The current rise of Asia among the
traditional balance of power from the West has partially served to highlight a
few of Asia’s failings. Besides the current
situation as mentioned in China,
the economic situation regarding jobs in Japan has also risen to the
forefront. An ‘iron rice bowl’, or a job for life, once so revered in the Land
of the Rising Sun, has now fallen on hard times. Many youths are no longer
interested in seeking out a permanent job, with many now more interested in
securing a temporary job instead. This serves to allow themselves the luxury
and the time to be able to travel abroad or to relax once they have earned
sufficient funds for the time being to do so. It is only when these youths run
out of money that they come back and find another temporary job to tide over
their latest ‘financial crisis’. This approach to life alarmed many Economics
professors particularly those in Japan, as these youths would have
practically no life savings to fall back on when they have aged or when they
encounter healthcare problems, and hence will then impose a greater burden on
the already creaking Japan Pension System.




Locally, in my country Singapore,
youths are often known to be apathetic to global or political affairs, even
those that might affect them. While this is not an absolute, it is definitely a
percentage high enough to be worried about, especially when it is noted that
these youths would be the leaders of this country in the fast-approaching
future. The common viewpoint among these apathetic youths is to just worry
about their financial standings for the week and issues concerning their meals
while letting the government worry about the rest. This over-dependence on the
government for everything will potentially cause the downfall of the country in
the future, as the potential leaders of tomorrow are neither prepared nor ready
to take over the mantle of leadership. Lastly, panic might even ensue when in
times of strife and chaos, the people, who for so long were used to having all
their needs taken care of, suddenly find themselves cut off from the voice and
guidance of the government, and thus find their sudden ‘independence’ and
isolation more than just disconcerting. This might present such a shock that
the people will not be able to function efficiently as a whole while making
decisions to ensure their own survival.




The world
today as a whole has much to look forward to, with technology accomplishing
crest after crest. However, human society today still has far to go before they
can reach the zenith of our civilization. We have massive errors to correct and
measures to put in place before we can even achieve anything close to a utopian
society. Before that though, we have to seek to understand our differences and
work together to bridge the potential pitfalls in front of us before we can
truly advance as a global society.





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