Saturday, November 3, 2007

Be careful what you look for. You just may find it.

It is often the case that one sees what one is trying to find. It's a common but dangerous tendency. Belief is, after all, merely a matter of perspective.

Lambasting current TV programming as a scourge is a popular pastime, criticized for its influence upon the younger generation's values and responsible for the decline in moral fabric of this country. One writer suggests that Sweet Sixteen is a case in point, in that it violates the principles upon which this country is built: "the idea of being a do-it-yourself, hard working, striving individual, who fights to achieve success and prosperity for themselves"

There's plenty of programming out there that upholds these qualities directly if you look at them in an open-minded way. Take I LOVE NEW YORK on VH1. A collection of men compete for the affection of a sultry woman (and one presumes more than that..) and in so doing demonstrate the qualities needed to pursue the American Dream. Survivor is another. Project Runway, The Apprentice. In fact, much of the reality TV genre could be seen to support the American Dream in a significant way.

Don't get be wrong, I LOVE NEW YORK is in my view terrible, terrible entertainment but that is besides the point: in its content it upholds the priorities on which this country was built. It is also good to see some contemporary role reversal, with men subjugating themselves to women and pandering to their arbitrary whims instead of the other way around.

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