Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Expletives on TV

I'm seeing some chatter on Digg.com about a fuss being raised by expletives being used on TV. Just like the debate on violence on TV, that I commented on a few weeks ago, both sides seem to be focusing on kids not hearing this stuff. This is not just about kids. This is about broadcasters and performers that are using their medium irresponsibly. Filling the masses minds with vulgarity is unhealthy for our nation. For an example of this you can read the comments on Digg.com on this subject. The comments are generally the unintelligent onslaught of people with limited vocabularies looking for a venue to spew anger.

On the topic of kids and parents paying attention to what their kids watch. It is true that parents should be engaged with their kids. However the kids are home when parents are not. Kids have access to TV when parents are not in the room or in the house. Kids can stumble across this stuff while surfing the channels.

Besides children watching this kind of trash that is mingled with our entertainment I'm getting sick of having shows I otherwise enjoy being brought down to that level. Profanity is not necessary for me to know that a character is very angry. Profanity is not necessary to tell a funny joke. Why must the majority have to put up with such intrusions in our favorite programs from the minority that control the media?

Some are talking about free speech. We live in a free country, but with freedom comes responsibility. Being crude not responsible.

Should this be an issue for the courts or the governing agencies to get involved in I don't know. Those who don't want this stuff in our media need a bigger voice. It is not being heard over the behemoths that run the networks. Unfortunately the only course maybe to sacrifice our favorite programs and turn the tube off.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

The World Is Your Ash Tray

The main issues that impelled me to write this post has to do with dropping ash and cigarette butts anywhere one happens to be when driving. There are a few other behaviors that I think many people are oblivious to because it deals with smoking that otherwise would be considered inconsiderate and with some behaviors illegal if it was not related to smoking. I will mention a few of these as well.
  • Flicking cigarette butts out the car window.
    • I don't know why this always stuns me when I see it, but I just can't believe that people think this is acceptable.
    • At the stop light, piles of cigarette butts in the median. Littering is still illegal, right?
    • Driving down the road. Fire and gas tanks don't go well together. Always feels great to see a lit cigarette bounce out the window of the person in front of me and then see it bounce under my car.
  • Flicking ash out the window and onto the cars beside and behind.
  • Blowing smoke out the window that the person in the car behind gets to enjoy.
  • People having to walk through a gauntlet of smokers in order to get in and out of a building.
    • Everyone gets to breath, smell, and wear the smoke as they walk out the door.
    • Smoke gets trapped inside the entry way of buildings.
In this post I will not discuss that sitting somewhere smoking is really no different that sitting somewhere shooting heroine. I also will not discuss the "right" to smoke and that other's rights end where mine begin. The point I am trying to make in this post is the following.

I am not an ash tray. My vehicle is not an ash tray. The world in general is not an ash tray.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Violence in Entertainment Media

I happened across a post on Digg about a debate on whether the FCC should put policies in place to attempt to curb the violence on TV. http://digg.com/television/Debate_Should_the_FCC_Curb_TV_Violence I'm not sure whether they should or shouldn't, but I did notice something about the discussion of this topic in the debate and by people who "debate" privately.

The debate seems to focus on protecting the children. That is a great goal, but I think it becomes using the children as a way to advance an agenda. What about protecting the adults. Of course, I am an adult, so I don't need as much protection as a child, but even adults are influenced and impacted by what they see and hear.

Also, I don't want fluff in the things I watch. Unfortunately I find a show I like and there ends up being fluff. By fluff I mean gratuitous sex and violence. At least one commenter on Digg talked about not needing to see Jack Bauer in 24 torture someone or be tortured to advance the story line. I have been thinking about this a lot and am considering not watching 24 next season for that very reason. I like the show, but that stuff is too much. Not because I am squeamish, but because I don't need to spend my time watching something like that week after week.

I have noticed a similar trend with Dead Zone. This last season seemed to add a lot more profanity.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Don't Buy Gas on May 15th - Are You Kidding Me?

Spam irritates me anyway let, but some just really underscore what a thoughtless practice forwarded messages to everyone in your inbox or even encouraging other to do so can be. I admit I do find information that I pass on to groups of friends via email. I usually judiciously pick which friends the subject might be of interest to and only send to them, not my entire mailbox. Another practice I have begun is putting everyone I am sending to in the BCC field and not the TO field. I think this helps with keeping the email addresses of those I send to private from each other. Most mass mailings I get have not only the names and email addresses of the most recent people this was sent to on the TO line, but also those that it was sent to previous in the body of the email as history. Thus, giving all of their friends and families names and email addresses to complete strangers.

The spam that I am ranting about today is the Don't Buy Gas on May 15th email. This is a great example of people just quickly forwarded on a message without actually thinking about what they are sending. How about not driving on that day. That would actually cut down the amount of gas that is being purchased from the gas companies because it is not being used. Not buying gas on a certain day does not lessen the amount of gas that is purchased that week. One will buy the gas on the 14th or the 16th and still give the money to the gas companies.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Growing Up

I have had a chance to ponder some things lately as I have seen news stories and TV shows that cover topics about violence in schools. I have also had to ponder other social problems. It seems that much of the times the problems partially stem from adults that haven't grown up. Adults that perhaps don't do the follies they did in their youth, but glory in them and would do them again if they had the chance. Adults that perhaps continue to do the follies of their youth (drinking, sleeping around). Adults that don't do the follies of their youth because their spouse or social group would frown on them, but still find them enticing. Adults that think that it is ok to do the follies of their youth because they are an adult now, but kids shouldn't do that.

I'm not articulating all of the scenarios well, but I think these attitudes are edging our moral standards to a point that extremes are now catastrophic and not just out of line or extreme. The rebellion we find from our youth comes from hypocrisy that they see in us. In the lack of boundaries until it is too late and too extreme to get a hold of.

When our kids see us pursuing our selfish motives because we can get away with it and are entitled to it they see no reason not to pursue their selfish desires. If those desires happen to be destroying those that have hurt them emotionally then violence can occur. If those desires are to be close to the opposite sex then pregnancy or disease or violence can occur.