Morality in America

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posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 04:32 PM
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I always listen to people talking about morality . . .US is a moral nation. . . American citizens hold dear their moral values . . .

But who really defines morality in the US. . . what are the guide lines. . . who wrote them. . . who make sure that they are followed . . .

Let’s go back a littler bit into American history,

In the nineteenth century the French observer Alexis de Tocqueville gave this estimate of America and Americans in his book Democracy in America.

www.gradesaver.com...

"There is no country in the world where the Christian religion retains a greater influence over the souls of men than America."

But is that still true in modern days? Has morality and ethics lost its values and Christianity can not really dictate the American soul’s behavior?

Has moral principles been corrupted by greed and envy, and greed and envy have caused and been exacerbated by the very programs America's politicians have adopted in a misguided effort to eliminate poverty and inequalities of all kinds.

What we stand now in America when it comes to moral values and how you do you understand as the meaning of moral values in America.




posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 04:47 PM
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I would say that America used to be the nation that you described. It ended with WW2. The Military Industrial Complex(MIC) gained too much power. The politicians no longer were the bringers of their own "morals", to lead the nation. If they did they were lucky to be one termers, not dead presidents. Today morality and politics are so far apart you'ld need Miss Cleo to make sense of it all.


I'm not saying that there is NO morality left in America, there's plenty, it's just not on the political level. I would go far as to say that the PTB, ie:MIC, use morality to divide the populous.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 04:57 PM
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Thanks Inteprid,

It seems that as politics gets involve in everything from religion to social issues morality is corrupted.

Now could it be that inequality in American have also made moral issue decline?

It is true that when you have liberty and equality one will destroy the other one?

Will it be true also that today Americans have few generally held convictions concerning good and evil.

What makes the rules of what good and evil is . . .

Is propaganda ruling our lives and distort our moral views of what the good and evil means?

After all the roots of the moral values in the US are base on christian believes.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 05:09 PM
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Originally posted by marg6043
It seems that as politics gets involve in everything from religion to social issues morality is corrupted.

What makes the rules of what good and evil is . . .

Is propaganda ruling our lives and distort our moral views of what the good and evil means?

After all the roots of the moral values in the US are base on christian believes.


Well thought out marg. When a corupt political structure, that's only concerned in feeding itself, gets involved in EVERY aspect of the populous' lives, it no longer is a PART of society, it's a parasite. What makes the rules? Propaganda(a tool), used to move some one way, some the other.

As to the Bold, those were the roots of the country. They've been overgrown by the weeds of greed. I've seen Christians on this board calling for blood. How Christian is that?

Edit to add: I bet this thread will be a ghost thread, as people will not want to discuss this important BUT not pleasant topic.

[edit on 1-8-2006 by intrepid]



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 05:21 PM
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i agree after ww2 it all changed. no one can say that anymore. just look at the new laws that get this YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED TO GIVE HOMELESS PEOPLE FOOD IN THE PARKS.

what sort of sick stuff is this. years of conditioning has done alot of damage to the american psyche, and will never be reversed. americans are just there now to buy goods, and make loads of money for the globalists.

Gorbachev says you are all suffering from a winners complex, this is why you are so isolated.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 06:53 PM
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Here's a good, fairly long definition of Morality

I don't think religion has much influence on morality of the people. Terrible acts have been committed by Religious groups in the past and present. I think people use religion as a tool to do good/moral and bad/immoral things. The religious beliefs of a population don't make it more or less moral than any other population in the world in my opinion,...... their actions do.

Is America more or less moral today? I think it fluctuates. Who knows,.... it is possible that morality may have gone up in fact! It just seems that different ethnic/cultural groups get along better today than they did 100 years ago. I think maybe these days we have a little bit more respect for each other. Lynchings and slavery used to be acceptable, and today they are not. The death penalty in many states is unacceptable. Discrimination and assult is unacceptable. Women can vote, and they can hold the same jobs as men. There are many more examples. I don't know. It looks to me like we're moving up in some areas.

If we're talking about the morality of our leaders and politicians,....well,.... I've got two words; Power corrupts. It has been true for centuries, and I don't think that today's world learders are any exception to that rule. Give anyone enough power, and watch what becomes of them. Kings, Nobles, Land owners, Politicians, Religious leaders and Prime Ministers,....... they're all human, breakable, most likely corruptable. I don't want to keep going, I think you get the point.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 07:03 PM
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I know inteprid that people many people would not talk about morality and what is happening to Americas values unless is to talk about abortion or same sex marriage.

Pity

Andy I had no idea that it was such a law . . . it sounds to me like the warnings on the zoo . . .Do not feed the animals or the wild life incredible.

Why in modern days you can not seem to find moral values in our elected political candidates and if you do they are more often than no using religion as a tool . . .

Will a value free society is any better?

I wonder.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 07:15 PM
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It's okay to feed the homeless. It's just that a public park is not the place to do it. The parks are for everyone and should not be a haven for a population that has such a large criminal element. The best way to benefit the homeless is to donate to agencies that do this professionally.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 07:23 PM
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I feel that on a personal level most Americans are moral. Group dynamics changes all that and when in "tribal" groups, it becomes US against Them, whether it be on a corporate level, sports team, military, church group; competition sets in and "winning" is the important thing. Winning is of supreme importance in the American psyche.

Individual Americans are generous and compassionate as are most individuals everywhere.

Nationalism, distorted patriotism, religion, even school competition brings out the worst in Americans. Actually it should foster morality but the above items have been distorted by the group think. All it takes is one charismatic person in the group to foster the evil aspects of the folks that like to congregate in cliques.

I know this is a very broad generalization. Thanks for the question Marg! We all need to question our motives.

[edit on 1-8-2006 by whaaa]



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 08:19 PM
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Originally posted by marg6043
But who really defines morality in the US. . . what are the guide lines. . . who wrote them. . . who make sure that they are followed . . .


The individual defines morality within his or her own self, ultimately. For me it comes from gut instinct moreso than from any written text or spoken word. And there are no doubt tough issues that make one question their own morality. Such as the Israeli- Hez problem with all the dead Lebanese civilians- or Iraq civilians for that matter. Regardless, my gut instinct tells me that killing innocent people is morally wrong, no matter the cause, the agenda, or projected or desired outcome of such a vile act.

"Thou shall not kill." There's a moral for ya.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 08:30 PM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
The best way to benefit the homeless is to donate to agencies that do this professionally.


If there is a hell and some day I make it there (and I seriously doubt both propositions) I have no doubt you will be sitting in the seat beside me.


Feeding the homeless, the hungry and those that are just down on their luck and struggling should be an opportunity for each of us. To leave it to the professionals will insure that many needs are not met.

Just my opinion though,

wupy



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 08:32 PM
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I think that the argument can be made that morality is socially imposed. Without the need to coexist, codes of conduct would have little value. Moral values are really social values that alter instinctual egocentric drives so that needs of the group can be met. Society is nothing if it is not the fabric of endeavors that we perform for one another and ultimately benefit the individual because the collective efforts thrive.

I'll just let that simmer for awhile.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 09:21 PM
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Andy please provide us with a link to "do not feed the homeless", this is horrendous.
Marg, as usual you bring up hot topics.
I have recently moved " Home" after 20 years plus abroad. I am amazed but also able to see that the people have some very precious characteristics.
I still am unable to verbalize my opinion.
Inequity and moral decline. Yes well in some sense. It is seemingly very complex.
I have noted so many factors playing a role in peoples behaviour.
But the most prevalent is fear, then greed, envy, indifference. People are sooooo fearful. This especially outstanding in the lower income/ educated groups. I see arrogant even hostile behaviour exposed towards people with better education.
I find this very confusing.
Are people moving towards a primal state of mind "survival of the fittest" ?
I love being home, this is where I belong.
Forgive me I'm not a sociologist just a very concerned observer.
I'll be back when I've thought about this.
WIS

[edit on 1-8-2006 by WalkInSilence]



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 10:04 PM
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WalkInSilence

I understand your point and TrueAmerican, yes I believe that our society has declined when it comes to social issues . . .

Or perhaps they are just been redefine to accommodate modern times.

Issues as the prayer in schools and the pledge of the legion has become values that people hold dear.

When prayer was taken from schools many though that our society was losing one of its values.

Also moral values are imprinted in our minds since we are young by our own parents or guardians, school and church.

But I see that in this instances is different approach to what moral values are.

We learn ethics at home alone with what our families hold dear as moral but then again it changes as we move through schools.

The biggest role is play by the church . . .

But as we get older and learn how society works as a whole we pretty much make our on definition of what we can hold morally right or wrong.

Education has an important role after grade school, I see that the more educated people are the more vocal they become and more critical of what they consider moral values.

Cultural division also brings the issue as how families from different backgrounds sees moral and social issues.

Specially when you have people that do not worship Christianity.



posted on Aug, 2 2006 @ 07:05 AM
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Morals in America. I would have to say that morals as a whole are on a gradual decline. Politeness is percieved as weakness, as is gentleness. I opened a door for my girlfreind once, and a gentleman (?) straight out asked me if I was P**** whipped. What? I see and hear this sort of stuff all the time, not to that extreme to be sure, but along the same lines. In our modern culture, rudeness is celebrated as "telling it like it is" or something along those lines, no matter who is hurt by it. Is politeness to others moral behaviour? I think so.

Moral equivolency is another. My defending myself from some idiot who wants my wallet by hitting him in the mouth and breaking his jaw is from the standpoint of some the moral equivelent of some drunk beating his wife. I'm 6'4", I weigh in the neighboorhood of 260 pounds, and I am in resonablely good shape, I did hurt the guy, and I regret breaking his jaw, not a great deal mind you, but I regret doing so. But to say, it's equivolent to some guy beating his wife? Nope, sorry, I don't and won't buy into that.

I am by nature a peaceful sort, and my morals are my own to a certain extent. But certain things are right, and certain things are wrong. This attempt by social engineers to blame the wrongs committed by people on "society" is foriegn to me. If you do wrong...whatever it is...own up to it, and take your lumps as it were.

Most of the rules, or morals, we live by are imposed by the society we live in. But some rules are universal...the big don't pick on the small, the big come to the aid of the small, or helpless. I see this attitude changing, even celebrated.

Can the time this began be pinpointed? Not exactly in space and time...but the general timeframe can indeed be. The late 19th century, early 20th when gigantic business began to make serious inroads into our political process. When the superrich begin to make to rules, problems begin to occur and trickle down. My opinion mind you, and there are holes in the theory without a doubt, but it does seem obvious to me. Some of you with more knowledge about this feel free to correct me.

In case anyones curious, my girlfreinds reply was memorable, and I quote; "So what do you do with your girlfreind, assuming you have one? Throw her through the door?".



posted on Aug, 2 2006 @ 07:45 AM
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The morals in the US started to go down hill during the hippy rebellion when society more or less split. People started to swear in public where as prior to that if you did you got arrested, but that is no longer the case. It was at that time that church attendance dropped dramatically and it never has recovered to this date.

It has nothing to do with who is in office or greed, it is all based on family values and always will.

You can thank the likes of the ACLU for taking prayers out of our schools. You can also thank the ACLU for the Porn revolution. Boy I am willing to bet when that happened the framers all turned over in their graves.

One phrase always comes to mind when the subject of morals comes up "The family that prays together stays together" Think about it.



posted on Aug, 2 2006 @ 08:03 AM
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for those that want links to the feeding the homeless in parks i was talking about.

news.yahoo.com...
news.yahoo.com...
news.bbc.co.uk...

don't know if true, but the bbc one says you can be fined for giving them food(found other links that say you could goto jail for feeding them). we have bush and blair talking about values and morals, and projecting them to the world, and now american states do this sort of thing.

america may have had a big portion of christians in years gone by, but today, it is
a land of lets pretend.

and before anyone in uk speaks, look at this articule.

news.bbc.co.uk...

[edit on 2-8-2006 by andy1033]



posted on Aug, 2 2006 @ 08:28 AM
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There is some truth to that...but why? OK, morals have declined...that's a given. Some here blame the "freelove" generation for the decline, I personally feel they were a symptom of the problem, not the cause.

It began before that, long before...earlier I said the gigantic business was to blame, and I still believe that to be the case...however that wasn't the only cause. When the westward expansion was taking place neighbors helped neighbors not only because it was the right thing to do, but because if they didn't bad things were going to occur; Indian/Outlaws attacks, smallpox, or similar outbreaks, natural disasters; well, you get the picture. As the pioneers settled the west, the profiteers began to move into, and in some cases over, them. First the railroad barons, then the large landowners...gods in all but name in the amount of power and influence they wielded, both in the west and in Washington DC where they peddled influence. So many of todays politiacal power owe their positions to these families, and the families of the bought and paid for politicians.

It takes very little imagination to see where the decline began...greed the what's in it for me syndrome. The military industrial complex is a direct desendant of the railroad/steel conglomarates of the late 19th century.

The freelove movement was an extreme backlash against what many of them percieved as an unfeeling father figure.

IMHO, the decline of morals in America began long before the sixties or even WWII. It began when our grandparents, or great-grandparents began to let others take care of our neighbors. The syndrome continues today with low voter turn out, lack of civility in our day to day lives, and in letting big gov't, a wholly owned subsidiary of gigantic business do our thinking for us.

Right is still right, wrong is still wrong, but when someone is telling you purple is red and red is black, its no wonder the picture gets muddled up.

No one institution is to blame for it. All of us, to a greater or lesser extent, share in the blame. We get so busy trying not to offend, that we forget that certain people should be offended on a regular basis. It helps to keep us honest.



posted on Aug, 2 2006 @ 12:57 PM
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O.K. I have one more observation I'd like to share.

I went back and re-read the definition of Morality (which I recommend others here do as well): Definition of Morality

From what I can see (and I could be wrong,..you be the judge),.....Morals cannot decline, they can only change. Each individual upholds their own moral standards, and moral standards usually vary from person to person. There is the basic Moral Conduct that your society asks of you (i.e. don't kill, don't steal, etc. etc.), and then there is proper moral conduct that you set for yourself, and adhere to (i.e. should I be polite to those who are rude to me? Should I turn in that wallet I found on the street? Should I tell the police that my best friend stole a shirt from the department store?).

So in conclusion,...... the question should not be; "Have morals in America declined?",.... it should be "How have morals of the American society changed over the years,.... and why?" "Have they changed for the better or worse according to your personal moral standards?"

In fact I think American society's 'basic' (upheld by the law) Moral standards have increased.

1.) Back in the day it was O.K. to beat and/or kill someone simply because of the color of their skin. Today the law would punish you for beating/killing someone only because of the color of their skin.

2.) Back in the day it was O.K. to enslave someone simply because of the color of their skin. Today slavery is unacceptable, and punishable by the law.

3.) Back in the day women were not equal to men, and did not have the same human rights. Today women can vote, and do whatever they desire to do (job-wise).

4.) Back in the day public hangings were O.K. Today hanging a man/woman in public is absolutely unacceptable, and in some states the death penalty is absolutely unacceptable.

5.) Back in the day you had no worker unions, workers were mistreated, and even children as young as 5 years old were employed in certain factories. Today such things are unacceptable, and workers have unions who look out for them. Most companies are required to offer health insurance, etc. etc.

6.) Back in the day if you rented a place to live, and it began falling appart around you, there was not much you could do. Today we have certain living standards and laws that require land-owners to take care of their rental properties.

7.) Back in the day racism and religious intolerance was a part of society. Today such discrimination is unacceptable.

8.) Back in the day freedom of speech and Gay pride parades were a bit foreign to the public. Today we provide the freedom to all who wish to speak their mind. We may not always like it, but we accept that they have the right to express themselves.

9.) Back in the day it didn't take much evidence to have you convicted, and sent to jail, even for something you didn't do (i.e. Witchcraft), or something as trivial as holding different religious beliefs (i.e. No one is getting burned at the stake because they said they didn't believe in Christ). Today the law requires solid evidence with credible witnesses,....and so forth.

Honestly there is so much more that could be mentioned. Morals have changed in America, no doubt about it. Like I said in my previous post,....I think in many cases they've changed for the better. Once again,.... everyone's moral beliefs differ, and the only moral beliefs we are required to uphold are the ones enforced by the law.

A society's morals are in place in order to make it possible for the many large and multicultural groups to get along inside one Country. Guess what,..... they get along better today than they ever did! America must be doing something right.
I know there are a lot of Countries in the world who have their multicultural/multireligious groups fighting each other as we speak. Maybe they need to reconsider their current moral values.



posted on Aug, 2 2006 @ 01:31 PM
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2manyquestions

Good, point . . . I guess morals have gone through a metamorphosis and just has not decline but only in the eyes of the few that still cling to some old values . . .

While for others old values are just obsolete and new ones are emerging.

Perhaps for the younger generation their view of values is somewhat different from their parents or grandparents.

I guess with each generation values just change to accommodate for the change of times. . . perhaps?





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