October 22, 2017

The Tribe has Spoken! 11/19/2010


The votes have been cast, the oracles consulted and this week’s Watcher’s Council results are history.

This week’s winner is Bookworm Room for Our de-aspirational society; or a society aiming for victimization and tawdriness, an insightful look at how our society has changed as its goals and role models have changed:

Any0ne over thirty (or, maybe, forty) will no doubt agree with me that our popular culture has changed dramatically in terms of the goals it sets for young people. Certainly there is nothing today that compares to The Rules of Civility and Decent Behavior in Company and Conservation, a guidebook written by Jesuit scholars back in the late 16th century that George Washington studied with regularity and reverence. Fast forward approximately one and a half centuries, and you have Harry Truman, reading over and over again a book entitled Great Men and Famous Women. These were aspirational books that had as their purpose teaching young people to abide by moral principles and to think big, whether in personal interactions or in lifetime goals.

Literature generally, right up until my childhood, aimed high. Every American child, myself included, must have read Parson Weems’ highly fictionalized The Life of Washington. If you read that, you knew that you too could be president if you were incredibly hard-working, brave and honest.{….}

Books nowadays are another story entirely. Every week, after a trip to the library, I sort through the books my 13 year old daughter wants to check out, and am horrified by what our nice suburban library has on the teen shelf. The most innocuous books merely give the teenage protagonists permission to be whiny, self-absorbed and manipulative. No matter the issue, the answer is “feelings, nothing more than feelings….” The more troubling books seek to inform the children’s sexuality, whether by encouraging early sexual behavior or by messing with gender constructs. And while there are a few uplifting books hidden amongst this pile of dreck, the vast majority of offerings are remarkably self-involved and devoid of any antiquated notions such as generosity of spirit, self-sacrifice, bravery, or core moral absolutes.

Our non-Council winner was American Front with One Of Many American Military Heroes, an inspiring story that shows why the US Marine Corps, who had their birthday this week have been inspiring their fellow Americans and making our country’s enemies tremble and soil themselves these past 235 years.

Semper Fi indeed!

Here are this week’s full results:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

Congratulations to the winners, and to all the participants.

See you next week!

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