Can Britain survive trash culture?
I am constantly amazed at the way expat British people, recently moved to Singapore, speak of the country I grew up in. It is not what it was, by a long way.
It is saddening to be told that all those forces that were just beginning to take hold when I was in school, have now triumphed, and become the dominant culture. A nation once known for breeding sophisticated "gentlemen", is now best known for the abundance of its yobs, or "Chavs" as they are now known.
Let me explain. The Chav represents all that was once regarded as base in the human. They revel in stupidity, actively hate all who are intellectual, have no respect for the law, for education, for employment (they often live on benefits and petty crime), or for anything that once was remotely considered a social value. Yet, this moronic creed is now the dominant culture in Britain: it is the nature of the "masses".
I left Britain almost eight years ago. It is now clear that, though I have often wanted to, I can never return. That is, the place that once I knew, is no more. Britain of today, does not resemble the Britain of only a few years ago.
The problem is only just beginning. The next generation of British kids are showing shocking signs of being subnormal, compared to the kids of only fifteen years before. There is a twenty-five per cent drop in intellectual function of the average British child compared to 1990 (according to a study of 10,000 children by Michael Shayler of King's College London). That means that, in a few short years, these rather intellectually impaired children (by recent historical standards) are going to become adults. They will add to the dumbing down of British culture. They in turn will become parents, and so the problem will grow, over time. Unless something effective - and rather major - is done, Britain promises to be a country without a future.
An insight into the minds of the people of each nation can be garnered from the kinds of comments they leave on my site. This morning, I found a handful of posts from the same person, from Lambeth, London. None of the posts were publishable. Some of them lacked capitalization and punctuation. None could be classified as sentences. But that wasn't what struck me. What struck me was their coarseness. Two comments consisted of nothing but expletives. That was the sum total of their ability to contribute to the debate of ideas that the internet - and blogging - should be about.
On reading them, and recalling what my colleagues recently arrived from the UK had told me, I was moved to write of the declining situation, in the UK - and to do a little research.
I found something, in my search that should appal all who have ever been a parent. I found the story of one "chav" who had won 9.7 million pounds in the lottery. He set about living "large", in a rather grotesque manner (for instance he appears to have bought 30 vehicles, so that they could be smashed to pieces in a demolition derby in his spacious garden). That, though crass, wasn't what worried me. My concern was his proud boast about his two year old daughter: "Her first words were f*** and s***." He thought it was great.
England was once a nation of refined and cultivated gentlemen, renowned throughout the world for their manners, wit and "breeding". Now, they have become a moronic breed who delight that their babies' first words (and therefore, implicitly, the words they had heard most frequently) should be two expletives. What hope is there of such a child growing up to be an adult of wit, manners and "breeding"?
How long can Britain hold its position in the world, when the quality of its people - in a very real sense - is in such decline?
Britain is a nation that once possessed a rich intellectual tradition. It produced world-class thinkers by the bundle. Its universities were among the best in the world. But now, it is a nation that loathes all that is intellectual. Thinking has become socially unacceptable. To sit in a pub, and speak intelligently, is to court a jeer at best, or a beer glass (broken), at worst. Only stupidity and vacuity are now socially permissible. The intellectual is on the run - and lives in perpetual hiding, marginalized in society, daring not to raise a voice, lest they be denounced and set upon.
Once a society has marginalized its thinkers, it cannot be long before such a civilization collapses. Britain has taken that step of marginalizing its best people. Not even mediocrities have taken their place. It is the idiots who have taken the reigns - it is they whose voice shouts loudly. Britain, is now a land of the lout.
I don't believe that anyone in a society should be marginalized - but if any class of people had to be marginalized - it should be the louts, not the thinkers.
Britain needs to step back from this particular abyss. It needs to discourage loutishness, to subdue the creed of the moron, encourage intellectual activity, reward brilliance, foster thinking. It needs, in short, to be what it used to be: a great nation, brimming with great people who dedicated their lives to serious endeavour (or at least, enough of them did so, to make it the leading nation it once was). It is time to shrug off this attack of idiocy - and return to the values and sophistication of yesteryear.
It won't be easy. It won't take place overnight. But if Britain is to survive as a nation worthy of the term, it must fight the decline of its people. It must urge them to better themselves, as people, and not just as economic units. If nothing is done, many of us will live to see the "decline and fall" of a once great nation.
The land that produced William Shakespeare, also produced the barbaric poster of expletives on my site. Would it not be a better nation, if it fostered more geniuses and less loutishness?
I hope, one day, to see, comments of wit, and brilliance, from the British Isles, as once might have been written. We will see just how long I have to wait.
(If you would like to read of Ainan Celeste Cawley, a scientific child prodigy, aged seven years and eight months, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, four years and one month, or Tiarnan, eighteen months, please go to: http://scientific-child-prodigy.blogspot.com/2006/10/scientific-child-prodigy-guide.html I also write of gifted education, IQ, intelligence, child prodigy, child genius, baby genius, adult genius, savant, the creatively gifted, gifted adults and gifted children in general. Thanks.)