Monday, October 12, 2009

Dumbing down for the masses?

Imagine you're the brightest kid in the class. Imagine you are forced to learn as slowly as the other kids - who aren't stupid, it's just that you know more and learn faster.

Imagine you're a smarter businessperson than most. Imagine that, instead of being able to surge ahead, you are held back because you're the wrong age, the wrong sex, the wrong race.

Now imagine you're urbanised. You live in a metropolis where people are survivors. It's all about money, politics, status and individualism. Then imagine that you can't read books that people of the world read, you can't live the life of the standard of other world cities, and you can't even listen to the music the world listens to.

Why? Because your leaders make you live the life of the people outside of the city - the rural masses.
Why? Because they hold the vote.
But do they really care? Do the people living on the outskirts of the city, the outskirts of the federal state, living their good lives trying to raise their children as good people - do they really care if you hear "Mazel Tov" in a pop song that they probably don't care too much about anyway?

Well, apparently they do. Or at least, your leaders believe they do.

Personally, I think most people are busy trying to get on with their lives and care more about their neighbours and the business of their own lives than those of the city folk.

I bring this up because today I was watching my satellite television, and on the TV version of the very same radio station I mentioned in my previous post regarding above said song, that same song was played, totally uncensored!

The reason obviously being that fewer people around Malaysia have this satellite service (about 3million) than listen to their radio station (which is free ad available to all the population of Malaysia who choose to listen to it).

Satellite Tv subscribers are mostly urban - and if they can afford it in rural areas, well I suppose it's natural for our patronising establishment to assume that they can "handle" less censorship. The masses out there though, might not be able to handle it when they discover that "Mazel Tov" and "L'Chaim" or "laheim" are jewish words for congratulations and cheers to life, right? I mean, that's why they censored those words, correct? Because they are jewish words, not because they mean what they mean.

Problem is, urbanites have to listen to a bastardised song for the sake of the PERCEIVED sensitivities of the mass voters.

If we're not careful, we'll be getting bullsh*t solutions to serious problems being fed to us all because of the PERCEIVED need to dumb down for the masses. Oh, hang on, that's already happening!

Sad thing is, these are all perceived needs. Truth is, those mass voters are smart enough to know when they are being taken for a ride. They have access to uncensored news and tv - via satellite tv, internet and word of mouth. They cannot be treated that way for much longer, even if they seem to be unretaliatory.

They may not react much to it now, but they will when it hits their front door and they have livelihoods and security to protect. You will see it manifest in disillusionment which may result in anything from protest voting, to a depressed socio-economy. If you lose the faith of your own people, you're leading a hollow empire that will sooner crumble than sustain you.

I worry most for the health of the society. When kids are getting put off by the actions of their parents and leaders, that rift between generations is hard to mend. And much as I disagree with fixed traditionalism and antiquated notions, The older generation has much to teach the younger about community, respect, faith and love.

But what young person will learn from someone who disgusts them? They will pave their own way, and if we're not careful, it will lack the soul and depth that proper care and nurturing engenders.

Wake up Malaysia! Your "parents" no longer see you as a way to safeguard their future - they only care for their present.

1 comment:

Ermayum said...

Hi there -
as you said the phenomenon is not new - it has been here for quite some time - our leaders thought we are stupid people - when will there realize that they are the ones who are not smart enough?


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