Although I didn’t say anything, I felt disgusted. I listened carefully, like an anthropologist documenting life among a primitive tribe.
I was sitting next to four teens — all female, ages from 16 to 19 — on break at their restaurant jobs. They all know me casually, so they don’t filter what they have to say. I routinely hear their normal conversations.
I won’t quote their actual words, not because I wasn’t making notes — I was — but because I’m not willing to quote the sort of language they were using. They were talking about the porn they watch, sometimes with others and sometimes alone.
It was all about “tits” and “pussy” and “dicks.” These teens talked about these things as casually as people 30 years ago might have discussed their favorite television shows. From this porn they watch, they’ve learned their bodies are fat and ugly — although three of them are actually normal size — because they’re not the skinny women with silicone-enhanced breasts they see in porn.
They discuss what a big deal it is for a man to have a giant penis. (One of them said her fantasy was “12 inches.”) They all wanted breast enlargements. And one talked openly about surgery on her labia — because “everybody knows” that an “outie is ugly.”
I feel like an alien here. And I’m again reminded that my quaint values — the ones which most decent people held not so long ago — are no longer welcome in this degenerate society.
I don’t want to force anyone to hold my values. I don’t want to force anybody to be like me. But I miss living in a culture where sex was a good and pleasurable thing that was private between partners. I miss living among people who were bright and intellectually worldly, but who chose to live in conservative ways.
If you object to any of what’s going on today, people tell you that you’re a prude. They shake their heads at how out of step you are. And I don’t mind being out of step with this dysfunctional culture. I just miss the time when there were more people who made the same choices for their own lives — when there were more families teaching their children to hold more enlightened values.
This is not about conservative politics. Although some political conservatives do embrace conservative lifestyles, many of them are hedonistic and licentious when there are no cameras pointed at them. Very many of them are hypocrites. Some of the wildest behavior I’ve observed came among the upper-middle-class Republicans who I used to work with in politics.
Although I’m no longer a political conservative — even by the older definitions — I’m one of the most socially conservative people you’ve ever known. That’s the way I choose to live my life, and it’s what I want in those I hold closest to me. I don’t want to force my beliefs or my lifestyle on anybody else, but I long for a culture in which those who are like me are still considered normal and admirable people.
I miss a culture in which my conservative social values were admired and respected. And I miss living among people who share those values — without having to be part of a group which is trying to use the force of law to impose our social values on others.
The bounds of decency have been pushed over and over in music, in movies and on television. Things which might have been shocking even 20 or 30 years ago aren’t even notable today. Those who want to make money by selling products to young people have crossed the lines of degenerate behavior so often — and gone so far — that there’s almost nothing that can shock or outrage a postmodern society.
Well, there are things that outrage them, but they’re insane things.
If you mention that it’s a simple biological fact that a man can’t become a woman — and a woman can’t become a man — you will have people screaming at you about how hateful you are.
If you express the thought that it’s not a good idea for women to dress with very little left to the imagination — that it’s simply indecent — you’ll be accused of “slut-shaming.”
If you object to the way people routinely use loud profanity in public — not because they’re angry, but simply because it’s normal speech to them — you’ll be told to get over it, because “it’s just words.” (Of course, if you use words the postmodern crowd objects to, you will be screamed into silence.)
It goes on and on. We not only are expected to welcome their outrageous behavior, but we are mocked and viciously criticized for holding onto social values and norms which matter to us.
I don’t want to return to the past. The “good old days” weren’t really so good in most ways. But social values matter to the strength of families, to the strength of communities and to the strength of the entire society.
Right now, we live in a degenerate society which is falling apart — and few people are willing to accept that. I can’t force anybody to understand this and I don’t want to force anybody to live as I choose to live. But I desperately long for the company of good and influential people who still understand why I’ve made the choices which shape my life.
I long for communities like that. I long for a family of good people who share my values. And I long for a time when more people can understand why they might want to be like us.
Many historians believe that the decline of morals and values played a key role in the fall of Rome. Future historians will one day write the same things about the fall of America.