Do you think American society is degrading?

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    Sep 21, 2012 3:12 PM GMT
    My 2nd cousin works as a trainer for United Airlines and she told me eye opening stories. She has traveled around the WHOLE world (well, at least wherever United Airlines go to). So anyway the most interesting story she told me was when she had to spend 3 weeks training in Tokyo, Japan.

    When she got off the flight - the trainees were holding a sign with her name and guiding her to the hotel and around the city - ON THEIR DAY OFF! So she comes into class the next day and they all stand up and bow. They stand and bow whenever she leaves the room for anything, bathroom break etc. After the class is over, she stays in the classroom to email a few things here and there and the students were just sitting there. She wondered why? As soon as she got up and left, they all left behind her. She asked her supervisor and they said Japanese culture teaches discipline by respecting the elder and the person in charge. It was definitely culture shock for her but she had the best time of her life in Tokyo.

    So the next month, she has a training class in Fresno, California. Well? She is thinking twice about having children now. Everyone in that class was very disrespectful, rude and inappropriate. They were all in their early to mid twenties (the same age group in Japan). She had such a hard time not only in Fresno but in most cities around America.

    So ask myself, is our society degrading? I know in the past our culture was different and much more respectful but today, it just isn't like that anymore. We do not do much to discipline our children and would rather spoil them.

    Well anyway, I also spoke to a number of foreign people visiting here and they say they kind of feel unsafe being here. I don't blame them since our gun/rap culture destroys our society. Even my supervisors who travel alot, talks about Northern Europe, China and Japan being such a safe place to visit. One of them left their iPhone at a restaurant in Norway and someone took the phone and ran after my supervisor to give it to him. I left my iPhone at the beach in MD and not a single person said anything to me. I had to walk all the way back to my spot from my car just to find it (thank goodness I did and it was around so many people just sitting there).
  • thadjock

    Posts: 2183

    Sep 21, 2012 3:22 PM GMT
    yeah i think the US society is degrading, but 2 things:

    1) the US is basically an adolescent as far as how long we've been a nation, so i think we're still behaving immaturely in many respects compared to europe and asia.

    and

    2) you'd do well to remember that the japanese have had more than a few gross lapses in good behaviour throughout history.....read up on some of the ww2 atrocities against american pow's. they won't seem so docile and respectful to you then.
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    Sep 21, 2012 3:37 PM GMT
    Keep in mind, most Americans are fat, stupid and lazy.
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    Sep 21, 2012 3:40 PM GMT
    Japan is an entirely different culture. You can't generalize a comparison based on either this one experience or this one topic. Yes, in Japan people are extremely polite to your face. But, for example, they are also exceedingly indirect. Try to have a discussion with someone about something, especially as a business matter, it can take days, weeks or years of circling around the topic and only indirectly alluding to it that you can ever get agreement or even a response.

    In other words, to quote The Facts of Life, "you take the good, you take the bad..." And believe me, there is both good and bad, and American culture comes out on top in many other ways.

    And foreign people feel unsafe in visiting here? Why? It's not as if tourists are being attacked right and left.

  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    Sep 21, 2012 3:41 PM GMT
    I fail to see what training people to act like Pavlovs dog has to do with degradation of a society. Obviously our society is superior to all the others or people would not keep moving here. A step-in-place society is inferior because like sheep, when you follow one that jumps off of a cliff, all of them jump off the cliff.
  • Import

    Posts: 7193

    Sep 21, 2012 4:02 PM GMT
    no, I dont think american society is degrading based on United Airlines Training programs for it's employees.


    Didn't some psycho in Norway kill like 77 people last summer in a gun rampage? uhhhh, that's worse that any american mass shooting. and the Norweigan dude bombed the capitol. icon_question.gif?

    Look at the Japanese during world war 2. They treated their POWs like animals, torturing, killing, raping, etccc...

    so no. i dont think american society is all that bad. Human beings are human beings... and human beings in america are just a reflection of the world we live in as almost all americans are from other parts of the world.
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Sep 21, 2012 4:23 PM GMT
    No, I think think our culture gets richer as we become more diverse and free. I see it in our innovations and art. Americans are creative independent thinkers. We'll come out of this recession and continue to be the land of opportunity. icon_smile.gif
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    Sep 21, 2012 4:26 PM GMT
    Yay! America bashing is so much fun!
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    Sep 21, 2012 4:32 PM GMT
    I can't help but think that the examples you provided are just isolated incidents that don't represent much of anything.
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    Sep 21, 2012 4:57 PM GMT
    It's hardly unique to America. The same can be said for Canada, the UK, Australia.
    However as much as I see Americans themselves bitching about terrible service in stores and restaurants etc. most people I talk to around here where we're right on the border say the opposite and find that generally speaking Americans in the service industries are noticeably friendlier and more attentive than here in Canada. Of course you're going to find extremes everywhere so that's why I said "generally" . My Brit relatives who visited also commented on that as well when they were here and I took them shopping and sightseeing around Detroit and Ann Arbor. They were really taken by how friendly people were in the stores and restaurants compared to back home, they were sort of expecting the opposite.
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    Sep 21, 2012 5:11 PM GMT
    "Then the idiot who praises, with enthusiastic tone,
    All centuries but this, and every country but his own;"

    As Some Day It May Happen
    The Mikado. Gilbert And Sullivan
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    Sep 21, 2012 5:12 PM GMT
    beneful1 saidIt's hardly unique to America. The same can be said for Canada, the UK, Australia.
    However as much as I see Americans themselves bitching about terrible service in stores and restaurants etc. most people I talk to around here where we're right on the border say the opposite and find that generally speaking Americans in the service industries are noticeably friendlier and more attentive than here in Canada. Of course you're going to find extremes everywhere so that's why I said "generally" . My Brit relatives who visited also commented on that as well when they were here and I took them shopping and sightseeing around Detroit and Ann Arbor. They were really taken by how friendly people were in the stores and restaurants compared to back home, they were sort of expecting the opposite.


    Americans should really visit Russia or any country in the former USSR or Eastern Europe to find out how good they have it back home regarding customer service icon_wink.gif
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    Sep 21, 2012 5:35 PM GMT
    AMoonHawk saidObviously our society is superior to all the others or people would not keep moving here.
    LOL HAHAHAHAHAHAAHHAHAHAHAHAA OMFG HAHAHAHHA LOL OMG
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    Sep 21, 2012 5:58 PM GMT
    The younger generation has long been disrespectful of the older in the US. Here's W.C. Fields getting beaned by his younger daughter 70 years ago, in his totally dysfunctional family.

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    Sep 21, 2012 8:07 PM GMT
    t's not that American society is degrading. It's that the rest of the world just isn't good enough to be as cocky as we are. icon_cool.gif
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    Sep 22, 2012 11:44 AM GMT
    Boris said(a whole bunch of stuff comparing cultures)


    So by this logic, other countries like MANY countries in Africa must be down right retarded. You know there are some parts of Africa that you cant visit because of the on going violence. Just because you have nothing to do with (whatever issue the country is having) doesn't get you a safe pass. Does this mean those countries are terrible/degrading/evil/whatever?

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    Sep 22, 2012 12:17 PM GMT
    Claystation said
    Boris said(a whole bunch of stuff comparing cultures)


    So by this logic, other countries like MANY countries in Africa must be down right retarded. You know there are some parts of Africa that you cant visit because of the on going violence. Just because you have nothing to do with (whatever issue the country is having) doesn't get you a safe pass. Does this mean those countries are terrible/degrading/evil/whatever?


    @OP: Interview with the Vampire:
    "Since you comprehend what you call goodness, doesn't that make you... good?"

    Meaning, just cause you can comprehend the nature of good and evil through your own soul, doesn't make you good or evil for it. You just gallop on your way now.
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    Sep 22, 2012 12:17 PM GMT
    Caslon21000 said"Then the idiot who praises, with enthusiastic tone,
    All centuries but this, and every country but his own;"

    As Some Day It May Happen
    The Mikado. Gilbert And Sullivan


    Doesn't it continue, "or the lady from the provinces who dresses like a guy"? Just asking.
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    Sep 22, 2012 12:44 PM GMT
    well, the one thing amongst others that is wrong here is the confidence of americans that they are superior to others.
    i believe how it works, that if for half-century certain nations believes that they are 'the best': soon they start getting the opposite, they regress by becoming fat and stupid, for example. it's like a law, if you elevate yourself among others - the harmony will bring you down, it happened before in history and it's what happens in usa right now, and we all can see how it only getting worse. educational system failing, people get sicker and thicker and yet people still completely sure that american is the shit, the best country in the world with the best people on the plante living in the best conditions. yeah, right... of course, the living conditions here may be a little better than, let's say, in south america or eastern europe, but it cannot be compared to the quality of living in scandinavia or western europe. and i don't talk about big cities like new york or la (even tho, nyc majorly sucks, and i know i've been here for a decade now).
    so, 'degrading'... i don't know, but i don't think there is any other place on the planet where kids have so much freedom to disrespect their parents, teachers or elderly in general like they do it in usa.
    and like someone said: being fat, stupid and overly confident in your superiority is the recipe for disaster. ask the bible-belt if they would agree... LOL
  • BlackRussian1...

    Posts: 323

    Sep 22, 2012 1:26 PM GMT
    Maybe "degrading" isn't the right word for what the OP is describing. US society is certainly less formal in most situations and there's less consideration (overtly anyway) of relative status/class determining your behavior with others than in other parts of the world. Certainly US citizens can be brasher, less nuanced, and loud but people here can also be extremely polite, considerate, and friendly depending on where in the US you are. (The US is a huge country with millions of people who differ from each other a lot from one region to the next or even, from one city to another within the same state.) If I'd lob any critique at the US it's that we're too casual in most things, can be graceless, and are too half hazard when it comes to aesthetics.

    Still, Japan is a VERY old nation with a totally different experience with expectations for social behavior so the comparison is a bit odd.
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    Sep 22, 2012 2:09 PM GMT
    I'll give you an answer after the November election.
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    Sep 22, 2012 2:24 PM GMT
    I don't see how bowing down and acting totally inferior makes you less degrading. If I were in Japan I would be considered disrespectful mainly because I enjoy joking with my grandparents, I show them respect but that is through different manners. The American culture is more flexible and despite some idiots, most Americans do show respect and honor their elders. Many visitors consider us the most friendly country. For as young a nation as we are, we have made great strides. I don't consider America degrading at all, I consider it a Western Civilization that will have lapses in judgement.

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    Sep 22, 2012 2:27 PM GMT
    I'm sry but rap culture is no less more of an influence of degrading this country than heavy metal or a gang of boys in a mosh pit hyper ventilating on tension... How rude, lol.
    As if rap has cornered the level of degradation in this country... What might seem degrading is the simple fact that you've equated the issue to nothing more than gun and rap culture... Look around and open your eyes, there's a lot of shit going on but I highly doubt thats the number 1 issue of why your fellow Americans are soooo fucked up.icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Sep 22, 2012 2:44 PM GMT
    One small example I can offer is that when I was a kid we knew almost all the people living on our block. Now? Pffft...
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    Sep 22, 2012 2:57 PM GMT
    I don't know about degrading...

    skeptical - yes.
    maybe a bit more disresprectful - yes.

    As a teacher, I can tell you that I hear things from students that I would never dream of saying to my professors in college - so I can see how being treated more respectfully by another culture could be refreshing.