Thursday, August 13, 2009


Time to shift gears a little. I came across a tweet today about an article that appeared in today's New York Times. The article is here. This one article has inspired a firestorm of resentment and anger .

The only question I have for the article's author is this: Do you feel better now that you've gotten that venom out of your system? The tone of snark in the article was balanced by a knowing wink of the eye, somewhat along the lines of a super-sophisticated relative smiling benignly as their yokel cousin tried to figure out how to use a smart phone.

We have a society where men and women are simultaneously told that they should be content with themselves as they are (on the one hand) and told in so many insidious ways that, no, they need to be younger, more muscular, more sculpted, more beautiful. This article plugs right into that schizoid mindset. It's no wonder that we have young women with eating disorders, people having surgery after surgery to sculpt themselves into duplicates of their idols, and even AARP publishing articles that seem to deny the reality that people age and decline. We've got claims of age discrimination, even as we have "town hall meetings" where people shout about "unplugging granny." We've got hundreds of thousands of elderly folks warehoused in nursing homes as these rallies go on. Is it any wonder that people get to feel that maybe they are unnecessary, somehow less than valuable, even worthless?

I'm sure that there are legitimate complaints that can be leveled against any major retailer such as J C Penney, complaints about their mix of clothing sizes, clothing materials, store hours, whatever. I'm pretty sure this article is about more than just reservations about these sorts of things. We all have insecurities. This article seems to display some of the author's.

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