Declining Ethics In American Culture Essay

1274 words - 5 pages

Declining Ethics in American Culture

It is unfortunate to see how ethics in the American culture are constantly declining. People’s moral values are below normal societal standards, which is why, the older generations are outraged by the way things are now, and become rather upset and feel disturbed towards society. Furthermore, religion has lost its value throughout the years. In the essay, "Do Kids Need Religion?" by Anthony Brandt, he underlines the idea of how religion is not properly taught or provided to children. In Wendy Shalit’s essay, "The Future of Modesty," she discusses how much modesty has reached its worst in the younger generations, however society is beginning to raise these standards once again. Nonetheless, education has also lost its honor code. Mark Clayton calls attention to how cheating is becoming incredibly common among students throughout the United States in his essay, "A Whole Lot of Cheatin’ Going on." In fact, it is obvious that American culture is declining fast in ethics, especially in religion, dating, and education.

First, religion has often played an important role in people’s lives, however its significance continues to decrease in recent decades. Parents do not pass on faith or beliefs onto their children, because most parents do not have faith or beliefs. These parents believe it would be hypocritical to teach their children about being spiritual, when they are not spiritual themselves. Children often go to their parents with questions regarding matters such as death, life, and God, but "Western culture is so secularized that parents can evade or dismiss 'religious' questions without feeling that they’re merely getting themselves off the hook" (Brandt 193). In contrast with today’s society, back in the old days, most Americans sought enlightenment in faith and religion. Today many people question religion, and even "spokesmen, leaders, and so on do not have the kind of influence and impact on people’s lives that they would have a generation or two ago" (News Hour 2). It is up to parents to instill faith in their kids; this way children can turn to their religion in time of need. As Brandt says, "many [parents] are proud to be without religion whose children cannot afford their being without it" (194). However, in today’s modern culture, as Brandt adds, "Morality can survive without religion, it appears; children can be taught the importance of right versus wrong without benefit of religious training" (139). So, Americans are beginning to turn away from the church, and do not rely on the church as much as they did many years ago.

Secondly, "Everyday, it seems, another girl is assaulted in school," says Wendy Shalit in her essay "The Future of Modesty" (214). It is horrifying to say such a thing, but it is reality. "In the nineteen fifties, I was not afraid of being raped; I was afraid of being talked about" says Shalit (214). In fact, modesty has extremely dropped in value...

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