Thursday, July 30, 2009

Remarkably Disaffected Youth Brigade


Compare youth in American to youth in Africa. Compare a suburban-brat to a beggar-child. Contrast the slums of Dubai with the streets of San Francisco. Contrast the urban-ghetto with the third-world.

I've been having a thought, and it's a lot like Koushun Takami. Battle Royale. AIDS children versus Jonas Brother fans. Fourteen-year old girls circumcised with a dirty razor-blade versus tween pop-idol Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus look-a-likes. Whigger kids from the Valley versus Taiwanese punks. Williamsburg hipsters versus Islamic heavy-metal rockers. Iconic ironic versus sincere survivalists.

I want to see some seven year-olds fight to the death over Chef Boyardee. Because I can guarantee that the pot-bellied Ethiopian will pwn the Nintendo DS wielding American (even though wouldn't be able to open the can because... no can-opener). I would bet my inviolate asshole that any Chinese girl who didn't get her head bashed on the rocks over population control will do more in this world than scenester sluts with hair-extensions and a pack of Parliaments.

Seems like these days I go back & forth on whether I hope for the best in humanity, or watch the worst in it like reality-TV gone horribly wrong.

But honestly, the first-world seems to have lost it's edge. We've become complacent, too comfortable on top, forgetting that you don't stay balanced up there by being lazy. Every day jobs are shipped overseas because other countries do it better, cheaper, faster and easier than any American company or European union, raping the Earth, speaking twenty fucking languages at once. Solidarity versus diversity? Or maybe it's ability versus the appearance of competency...

There are warehouses in Guangdong where rows upon rows of computers are being played by twelve year-old sweatshop-style labor, farming items for online computer-games to be sold through eBay and other websites to bored American/Canadian teenagers and collegiate drop-outs. And I bet if they knew how unappreciative those Gwailo fuckers were for the life they've got, why, our little e-farmers would swim across the Pacific and bite their fucking ankles off.

The young fashionistas of Beverly-Hills and Orange County wouldn't last a day in the jungles of Ecuador among the Yanomamo or island mountains of New Guinea. Hyphy contortionists couldn't compare to the body-modifications of the Maasai... or their spear-wielding skills.

I want to pit a gang of Turkish street urchins against any high school football team in America, and watch those under-fed scraps beat the ever loving shit out of them through sheer survivalist desperation.

Basically, kids are too spoiled, too indoctrinated by shows like iCarly or The Suite Life of Zack and Cody who make them think they are special, too pampered with indulgence born out of parental fear of reprisal for daring to discipline their children. Kids think that they deserve a car, cell-phone and pre-paid college education. They act crazy! Ruckus upon tantrum upon Shirley Temple-esque emotional explosions that hearken to atomic-bombs set off in New Mexico.

And the tweens, teens, early 20's crowd ain't much better. The disaffected youth across middle-America, from burbclave to city to meta-metropolis are decadently dead inside. Before they even could rightly be called alive, they have come to represent exactly what the world hates about us.

College sluts laud sexual liberation with spread-legs while Africa is in the midst of an AIDS epidemic. Bros lift their trucks ever higher as floods wash away the raised houses in Malaysia. Financial district douchebags buy a Ficus for their corner-office as South-America clear-cuts its way to Tierra Del Fuego. Reality TV documents the faux-drama of carefully scripted personalities in Daisy of Love while the major news networks try to regain their lost relevancy with actual stories about Neda, and Obama's Healthcare plan.

I want to pluck the apathy right out of my generation's eyes. I want to stomp on their hands every time they reach for another slice of ignorant-pie. I want to grab them, shake them, wake them up and shout, "BE ALIVE!" I want them to realize that they have become walking corpses addicted to fashion, pills, and useless technological gadgets like zombies moaning for braaaaaaaains.

Saboteur Academia will prevail. Through guerrilla education and subversive learning, through jolting the cultural zeitgeist like a horse-fly. We'll form the Remarkably Disaffected Youth Brigade who will win the War on Apathetic Ignorance by any means necessary.


But the reality is that there's no way to change the world. We can only change ourselves. The vast impulse to save my generation will have to be channeled elsewhere... like into blog-posts!

8 footnotes:

Sarah Alaoui said...

add to that list, using parents' money to go to far off countries to take pictures with African children as a token of so-called philanthropy then coming back as quickly as possible to home sweet home.

awareness is amazing, my friend, however there's only a few of us, I'd say, and even those among us aren't pure. i'd say it's a struggle for me trying to deal with materialism and world hunger at the same time. takes a lot of self-strength to get out of the rut, but def. not apathetic.

my thoughts aren't very coherent at 1:19 am but as always, insightful words.



Jasper said...

There are definitely people trying to fight for a better tomorrow in the first world not for the sake of philanthropy, but for the betterment of humanity. Even without all the self-righteousness.

But as long as life is convenient, complacency is contagious. A battle royale/tournament of the fittest might seem cute and something to romanticize about to justify the infinite struggle of those less fortunate, globalization is slowly erasing Darwinism (and evolution?).

I mean we could say that evolution is still taking place, but has taken a turn to be less about strength and virility (the lead vampire/zombie/mutant in I Am Legend comes to mind as an example) and more on an intellectual level geared towards advancements in science and technology.

Even as economies fail and natural disasters devastate communities, society is also an 'organic life force' that stretches, adapts, and evolves to secure its survival.

Eh, but I think I'm beginning to go into a tangent here.

Back to your topic. It seems that parallels can be drawn throughout history to the present. Although cultures change, become more/less moderate or civilized, human nature (and primary codes of society) remain the same.

There will always be young twenty-somethings living a dim carefree lifestyle and poverty in the valleys of warstricken regions. People are pretty/ugly creatures in that sort of dichotomy. Even the first philosopher's recognized the duality of humanity as clear as night and day.

One day it'll all crumble away though. This too shall pass.

...Well, if there's a point all up in there, I hope you find it. There're some thoughts I wanted to get down that may not get a concise point across. Sorry.

Unfortunately, I have become such a disaffected youth. I apologize for that, too.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak my mind.

tuleep said...

Thank goodness for that bonus or I would have added it myself.

You can't change the world by going out into it and shaking people into reality. Shaking or slapping the stupid off their face won't offset the years of societal building in their conscious and subconscious. That only happens with not only education, but showing a lifestyle and consistent decision making that backs that load of learning and awareness. You influence you're own social circle by how you live and how you raise your family and how you act towards those in immediate connection to you.

Now if everybody did that, it would create those building ripples that overlap over time. Only in a perfectly functional world...

JacqueRoxx said...

Yeah, I'll admit that I'm one of those youths you describe. I don't think I deserve anything, but there are certain things that I need because I've become accustomed to it (cellphone, laptop, etc). My parents are from Africa and they want to give me things they didn't have. BUT they also disciplined me (as in whoopings, not time out. Time out's for sissies) and taught me to work hard and give back, especially to the people back in Nigeria.

Anyway I understand what you're saying about materialism and such. But just because someone's well off do they have to worry about people in third world countries? I mean the world is pretty much "every man for himself". You might help someone and be stabbed in the back. That's happened to my family a lot. But keep on keepin' on. Maybe you will open someone's eyes

Zek J Evets said...

@sarah: and don't forget the celebrity version of globalization philanthropy...

adopting babies from foreign countries!

thanks for the props though.

@jasper: yeah, i was a little self-righteous, haha. can't deny that. but i feel it was justified (of course) because sometimes you need to demonstrate how you really think of something without being polite about it.

i don't think we're adapting anymore to secure our survival. our adaptations ensure that we now have the ability to destroy ourselves more than save ourselves.

however, i appreciate your disaffected youth "insider perspective".

@tuleep: i know that the only way to influence humanity for its own betterment is to live out the ideals you wish to impart. you can only be the change you wish to see in the world. through your actions and those action's reactions and those yet farther still ripples, you'll help... somehow.

yet, even in a perfect world, things would still be bad. it's the imperfections, and their rectifications that are beautiful.

@jacque: i think compassion is an important trait to possess. obviously you can't care about everyone or everything in the world, but you should be able to just care in general.

going out just for yourself is the smart thing to do... for you. but the world isn't going to be alright with that attitude.

you can die alone, but you can only, really live together.

JacqueRoxx said...

Oh trust me I care, sometimes I just like to be the devils advocate (I hope I used that right). I try to speak for people who aren't around. It's a bad habit I have.

Zek J Evets said...

@jacque: oh, that's fine. i do it all the time, haha. not really a bad habit to me.

Cherlyn said...

"Basically, kids are too spoiled, too indoctrinated by shows like iCarly or The Suite Life of Zack and Cody who make them think they are special, too pampered with indulgence born out of parental fear of reprisal for daring to discipline their children. Kids think that they deserve a car, cell-phone and pre-paid college education. They act crazy! Ruckus upon tantrum upon Shirley Temple-esque emotional explosions that hearken to atomic-bombs set off in New Mexico"
im truly depressed because i look at our generation america and i see some truly pathetic stuff going on there
what happened to the post-depression era sensibility!?
what happened to being culturally and politically aware?