Moral Decay and Religion in the U.S.

I always found it interesting how foreigners perceive United States.  What is particularly interesting is how they relate “religion” with my country.

After traveling through Brazil, I really grew to appreciate the Evangelical movement taking place in that country.  Honestly, I never thought I would have said that.  I am not a fan of imposing my religious beliefs on others, and living in a liberal society [consult the term liberalism: it is my opinion that we should be restrained from doing so.

Nonetheless, I also think it is pathetic how certain pop singers or movie actors exert such large influences over large swaths of young (and mature) adults.

The topic of moral decay has long been in my thoughts, but its articulation has actually come from a few conversations I have recently had with my youngest brother.  Really, the music you choose to listen to defines you and definitely impacts you as an individual.  The clinché expression used “you are what you eat” also applies to music listeners.

Therefore, the quote can be generalized as “you are what you consume”.

I feel as though we export a lot of garbage, (such as yours truly above), yet many foreigners do not understand that parts of the United States are extremely religious.  I will go further, parts of the United States are the most religious in the world.

Unforunately, in today’s modern political discourse, we observe major clashes between “communitarian” and “liberal” conceptions of rights.  In layman terms, the debate is divided as such:

Team 1: Communitarian: Seeks to define and impose “rights” in accordance to a general consensus that was established in a given community at some set date in the past.

Team 2: “Liberal”: Seeks to define and defend basic rights (or minimum floors) for all individuals, ensuring that a given majority cannot exercise tyranny against those who are less numerous.

I believe that both sides have extremely legitimate points.  Briefly, the communitarists defend fundamental trusts, however most of their advocates cannot even clearly articulate what they are defending.  (Their arguments can benefit from more challenges and affronts to their beliefs.  Sometimes you find that your prior beliefs have been forumlated based upon imperfect information).  On the other side, liberals must realize that many truths do exist in conservatism.  They must challenge beliefs, but not blindly.  They should also look for validity in these beliefs and see the establishment of “minimum rights” as an enhancement for soceity, not as its recreation.

So, this is the basic background for the issues unraveling in the United States.  I good comparative study would be comparing daily life in Salt Lake City, Utah with Fort Lauderdale, FL.



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