The rules of society sometimes never change

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Posted Thursday, September 11, 2003 - 12:00am

Society as we know it has a life of its own. Even though we live in the 21st century, society is still much like it was in the Renaissance, or even the Meridian of time. No matter what is said or what actions take place, society seems to never change. Time will change, people will change, and even fashions change; however society will not. It's almost as if it's got its own train of thought.

If you read the newspaper or watch television, you know that there are a lot of conflicts within society. What has been on our minds as a nation recently is the war on terrorism. We have now reached the two-year anniversary of the unforgettable actions against the United States on September 11, 2001.

Even to this day we are traumatized by the image of those horrifying planes that ploughed their way into the heart of our great nation. Think about what motivated the men who perpetrated that crime. Power and greed. Now read the newspapers and ask yourself, are we not committing the very same crimes as the 9-11 terrorists, if only on a smaller scale? It isn't necessary for people to come here from other countries and tear us down. We are already doing it to ourselves.

A 21-year-old man was shot in the head last Wednesday in Salt Lake County. He and two passengers followed by a car as they drove home that night. As the victims drove up to a house and got out of the car, they were welcomed by a storm of bullets.

We as a nation make an effort to keep our flags flying high with pride, thanking those Americans who gave their lives for our freedom. Yet at the same time, we bring death upon ourselves with hatred, power and greed.

Society has us on a dog leash. We think we are safe and can roam out amongst ourselves and then hatred pulls us back.

Look back at history. Martin Luther King, Jr. preached freedom and equality. Because of one man who could not accept his argument, or tolerate change in society, Dr. King was shot. Society would not allow itself to swallow its pride just over a little difference, or maybe even a little change.

Choices that we make today affect our future. Do you really think if Socrates could have escaped his fate that his philosophies would have brought such intrigue to us? You see, Socrates was a Greek philosopher who was born in 470 B.C. His philosophy was based around "the need to know for yourself." He believed in wisdom, justice and a good life. In 399 B.C., he was tried and sentenced to death for corrupting the youth. For this crime, he was forced to drink poisonous hemlock.

This world is based around youth. If we cannot create a better world for ourselves, how are we going to make it better for our youth? Or better yet, why is that every time I pick up a newspaper I seem to find an article about a youth trying to kill himself? Why are we still paying attention to Socrates' philosophies?

I was reading the Salt Lake Tribune about a 13-year-old girl "guzzling drain cleaner in a failed suicide attempt." Words of advice: Step out of your box. Take a look around, there are people that do love you. Don't take the easy way out, this is "Generation X." Live up to your generation, it is the only excuse you have to be extreme. Parents, adults, be happy. I have always said the meaning of life is to be happy. Don't let society pull you back, if not for your sake for the youth of today.

A 16-year-old boy was charged with second-degree felony manslaughter Thursday after he shot his neighbor. He was target practicing in his backyard with a .22 caliber when a shot he fired missed his target and struck his neighbor.

Tell me, where were the parents? If we keep letting ourselves down like this, society is going to kill us.

Look at history again, how many people gave their lives for us? How many people were killed in vain? It all equates to death and if we don't do something about it, our youth are going to suffer.

What do we have now? Time has changed, people are different, and there are new fashions but society is still the same as it has always been. The only difference is, centuries later, we are still devising new ways to commit the oldest of sins. Until we realize this, nothing will come about that will better our lives.

The best advice I can give is just live life to the fullest. Know that things happen for a reason. Be happy, with your happiness, and others will follow. Most importantly don't let yourself fall into "The Rules of Society."

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