Monday, February 17, 2014

The End of Social Norms?

According to a poll conducted on over 40,000 children, teenagers and adults, behavior amongst the youth is becoming less dependent on societal expectations. Based on their answers to a series of questions, it was determined that about 25% more of the teenage population disregards public opinion. This ignorance to expectation isn't necessarily something new but it is more abundant, and is quickly becoming a majority opinion. This in itself is ironic to me; a majority opinion of ignorance to the majority means that the notion of a dominant "popular" belief should be dead. The nature of the experience at Pratt makes it hard to judge what societal norms truly are, but the indifferent attitude of youth today to tradition is certainly apparent. The example of a girl's lacrosse team wearing flip-flops to meet Obama rang true as a moment of rebellious informality. Greeting the highest authority in the land with such an appearance suggests that they had no sense of inferiority to a man that runs their nation. Along with the poll results, its evident that the attitude towards adults, seniority and each is becoming less formal across the board. This leaves more room for personal interpretations of behavior, resulting in a wide variety and more sincere interactions, whether they are polite or not.

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