The Dumbing Down of America

The world is changing for the worse. What are the causes of this generation not caring anything that isn’t within their own narrow frame of reference? Is technology the reason they don’t find interest in the past or the future? Why are they so complacent about what is happening in the world today?

  • If you could reword this to focus on the arts and perhaps social media then this could generate a great deal of discussion. I'd also suggest expanding your view to include the general dumbing down of the World's media output, especially through pre-packaged and heavilly processed formulaic programming that requires little more than a passive viewer as receiver. Television? No good will come of this device. The word is half Greek and half Latin. CP Scott, 1846 - 1932 – Amyus 5 years ago
  • Who is "this generation" and also I think this is a bit of an overgeneralisation. I agree that you need much more specific areas of focus to address. Also why is it the Dumbing down of America, but linked to the World changing for the worst - becareful of this very "Western" thinking. America is not the pivotal point that reflects the changes in the rest of the world. I think this needs a lot more clarification before moving forward, but on the up this would generate a lot of discussion! – SaraiMW 5 years ago
  • I think you are onto something here. I would suggest adding a component of critical thinking because it appears that there is a concern about how people get their news based on their existing assumptions. For example, FOX vs CNN. Also, schools should be doing a better job of promoting critical thinking. A generation that is educated enough could produce more centrist thinking critical of extreme positions and help with our polarization. But maybe I am glorifying the past as the Golden Age. There could also be information fatigue - TMI is getting people weary of having to wade through a mountain of info to get at the truth. Paradoxically, it seems people have more information but know less. – Munjeera 5 years ago
  • I like your topic, but I'm not sure if I like the sole American context. I'd urge whoever takes this topic to take other cultures and literature's into consideration (e.g fall in America, but where can we see a rise? Is this a global issue for the arts?) – Mela 5 years ago
  • For me, this topic is a really hard sell. As others have noted, pretty much every generation seems to criticize the generation after it (without noting its own blind spots). To possibly convince me, I would need to see 1) compelling statistics about patterns in political and social involvement across generations and 2) compelling points of comparison and contrast (maybe case studies) across generations. Simple claims about the most recent generations and generalizations aren't going to work for me. – JamesBKelley 5 years ago
  • There might be something to this issue but over-generalization needs to be avoided. In the movie The Breakfast Club (1985), Carl the janitor says to a teacher, who is criticizing students, "Come on, Vern. The kids haven’t changed, you have." To look at what can pass for news sometimes on cable news shows now and then remember that TV news was not all that well-developed in some previous era, or that there were TV shows like Queen for a Day or The Gong Show to match Jerry Springer. How can this topic be put into a broader historical perspective? – Joseph Cernik 4 years ago

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