Is it just modern entertainment that is "Depraved"?

by BluesBrother 4 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • BluesBrother

    The WT is fond of warning of the dangers of modern mass entertainment and of how terrible it is :

    g92 11/8 pp. 5-6 A Balanced View of Entertainment

    We live in dark times, what the Bible calls "critical times hard to deal with." (2 Timothy 3:1) Not surprisingly, today’s entertainment reflects our era, often in its ugliest aspects. Sadistic violence, blatant immorality, and the lowest of human reactions—such as racism—all find their way into popular entertainment, contaminating it to varying degrees. On the extreme end of the spectrum, what should be entertainment is little more than pornography and filth.

    In some ways, many of us could agree, in principle, with the disdain. If you are as old as me you may remember when a lot of what is shown on T V would not have been shown, when mainstream films did not show such violence and sex, and many of us may believe that it was better for it, than now. Perhaps I should say that my tastes are fairly mild and I am not advocating more "liberal" attitudes

    BUT this an evidence of Satans world slipping into "The low sink of debauchery" as the system nears its end? Are people today really different from our forebears who had higher standards in the "Golden age" before 1914?

    The censorship of TV, plays and cinema was introduced as the media became available but that was a tightening up of standards rather than maintaining them. If one looks back into history, what did people do to amuse themselves?

    Wikipedia says this about Burlesque of Victorian and Edwardian times :

    "The genre often mocked established entertainment forms such as opera, Shakespearean drama, musicals, and ballet. The costuming (or lack thereof) increasingly focused on forms of dress considered inappropriate for polite society. By the 1880s, the genre had created some rules for defining itself:

    • Minimal costuming, often focusing on the female form.
    • Sexually suggestive dialogue, dance, plotlines and staging.
    • Quick-witted humor laced with puns, but lacking complexity.
    • Short routines or sketches with minimal plot cohesion across a show.

    Charlie Chaplin in his autobiography gives an interesting account of burlesque in Chicago in 1910:

    Chicago...had a fierce pioneer gaiety that enlivened the senses, yet underlying it throbbed masculine loneliness. Counteracting this somatic ailment was a national distraction known as the burlesque show, consisting of a coterie of rough-and-tumble comedians supported by twenty or more chorus girls. Some were pretty, others shopworn. Some of the comedians were funny, most of the shows were smutty harem comedies—coarse and cynical affairs. (Charles Chaplin, My Autobiography: 125–6)

    The popular burlesque show of this period eventually evolved into the strip tease which became the dominant ingredient of burlesque by the 1930s. In the 1930s, a social crackdown on burlesque shows led to their gradual downfall. The shows had slowly changed from ensemble ribald variety performances, to simple performances focusing mostly on the strip tease. The end of burlesque and the birth of striptease was later dramatised in the entertaining film The Night They Raided Minsky's."" (end quote)

    Going back a little further, people would love to watch a public hanging.

    Compare this link about a hanging in Staffordshire England

    "In spite of heavy rain throughout the proceeding night the crowd was estimated to be between 30,000 and 35,000, the majority of which was made up of men. Many of them walked the ten miles from Rugeley. Special trains came from Birmingham, Stoke-on-Trent and London. By dawn hundreds had already taken their stand in the most favourable positions." (end quote)

    30 thousand, as many as attend a major football match, or whatever is the thing in your land, all to see man really die, not make believe or play acted, and less than 100 years ago.!

    Further back public hangings, and floggings were common and people gathered to enjoy the spectacle. Miscreants may also be placed in the pillory and the locals had a lovely time throwing things at them, from rotten fruit to stones that injured ..

    Any one that enjoys old folk songs or studied period plays knows that the content is often of a sexual nature. Why? because the audiences enjoyed it...

    I am just saying that the human nature has always been the same. If allowed to, people are entertained by sex, violence and other peoples suffering. Sad, but true.

    My point is therefore this..It is no good comparing modern entertainment to the ideal that you would like to see. people are just people and have always been so. This generation is no more depraved in its tastes than any other, despite what the Watchtower would have us believe.

  • undercover
    undercover’s entertainment reflects our era, often in its ugliest aspects. Sadistic violence, blatant immorality, and the lowest of human reactions—such as racism—all find their way into popular entertainment, contaminating it to varying degrees. ...

    Is today's violence on TV and in movies worse than the violence that was entertainment in the Roman Coliseum?

    Is "deviant" sexual tastes a 20th century discovery?

    Is racism a modern issue that past generations never dealt with?

    Every era has it's dark side, it's violent side, it's ugly side.

  • fjtoth

    These are the best of times in many ways. Most of mankind have access to more education than ever before, especially due to the internet. Good books, magazines and newspapers are available to cover every interest, good as well as bad. There are many more millionaires now than ever. We still have dictators and tyrants, but none are equal to Hitler at the peak of his power. Slavery was legal at one time, but not anymore. Gone are the days when child labor and abuse were acceptable. Women and non-whites have rights that formerly were denied to them. We still die from diseases, but not on as large a scale as during the Black plague or the Spanish flu. Modern and holistic medicines produce more cures than ever before, and people in general are living longer than in previous centuries. Hospitals now replace useless arms and legs and revive victims of stroke and heart attacks. The Dark Ages are gone and so are the torture chambers that were so common in that period. People are no longer burnt at the stake for being witches or for believing what others label as heresy.

    Sometimes it seems like people are becoming more godless in both belief and actions. But people change as they grow older, often for the better. Guys who in college were the biggest womanizers, boozers and godless fools eventually got married and had kids. Lo and behold, many of them now attend church and work hard to put their kids through college.

    Until we come back down to earth, life is scary and society is threatening to bring the world to an end. But that's the way it always has been and always will be until God in his own due time and way steps in to change things.

  • WTWizard

    What about the gladiators in the first century? And let's not forget that the First Dark Ages also featured death and mayhem, even worse than today.

  • jwfacts

    In the cong we used to talk about how bad the world was, going as far as to produce evil "snuff movies" where people really get killed (though I am not sure if this is just a urban myth as I have never heard of a real one). Yet that is nothing compared to the killing for entertainment of the past, such as gladiators already mentioned. We really live in the most civilised time period ever.

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