Changing Standards in Entertainment


Deep breaths.  Take several of them.  You’re on national television.  You can feel your palms getting sweaty as your heart starts to race, threatening to beat its way out of your chest.  Sweat trickles down the back of your neck as well as your forehead. You’ve prepared yourself for the Olympics ever since you knew how to walk.  You’re ready to do the pole vault.  You take one last deep breath and run towards the bar, press your pole down into the mat and launch yourself forward.  You realize that you made it as you plop on the mat on the other side.  It turns out that three feet is a manageable goal in pole vaulting.

Standards are constantly changing.  In America during the 1950s it was not acceptable for women to wear pants in public.  The 1939 film “Gone with the Wind” was controversial because of one curse word.  Now women wear pants all the time and modern movies spit out curse words like a baby spitting up puke.  Some changes are good.  Some are bad.

Here’s the question: since we know that not all changes in standards are good, how do we know which ones to accept and which ones to accept and which ones to reject?  My solution is this: do neither.

Allow me to explain: see the problem with both accepting the culture’s change in standards and rejecting the culture’s change in standards is that either way we are allowing culture to determine what our standards are.  Critical thinking dictates something better.  Instead of depending on society, culture, and the media to tell us not only what our standards should be but even what our options in standards are, we should examine things for ourselves to see what those standards should be.

Now for today’s tangent: why do we think that a movie with ten curse words and one “mild” sexual scene is “not that bad?”  Who determined that?  Did we sit down and look at what we know to be objectionable content and decide that was an acceptable amount?  Or instead have we allowed society’s standards of what’s bad and “not that bad” to determine what we think is “not that bad?”  Even better, why do we think a movie with no sexual scenes and no curse words with a completely anti-Christian message is ok?

Now here comes the kicker: this concept is very applicable to entertainment, but is even more applicable in our everyday lives.  What are your standards for your behavior?  Are you settling for the three-foot high bar?  You may hit it every time, but remember this: “if you aim for nothing, you will hit it every time.” – Zig Zigler.

Logan Judy
Logan Judy is a Christian blogger and science fiction author with a Batman complex. At Cross Culture, Logan writes about film, comics, cultural analysis, and whatever else strikes his fancy. In addition to his work at Cross Culture, Logan also blogs and podcasts at A Clear Lens. You can find him tweeting about Batman, apologetics, and why llamas will one day rule the world, @loganrjudy.
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