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"America feels like it’s unraveling. Though we live in an era of relative peace and comfort, we have settled into a mood of pessimism about the long-term future, fearful that our superpower nation is somehow rotting from within. The America of today feels worse, in its fundamentals, than the one many of us remember from youth, a society presided over by those of supposedly lesser consciousness. We yearn for civic character but satisfy ourselves with symbolic gestures and celebrity circuses." 

                                                                    THE FOURTH TURNING - STRAUSS & HOWE

This paragraph and particularly the last sentence sum up everything that America has become over the last 3 decades - shallow, vapid, lazy, and satisfied. I guess because I spend so much time on the road every day, I notice everything. We send hundreds of thousands of lower middle class and middle class men and women to the Middle East to fight for oil in an undeclared war that impacts the Average American in no way whatsoever, and we support the troops by putting a yellow sticker on the back of our SUVs and Hummers that get 12 MPG. What a fucking crock. Give me a break. I have relatives in the military. My mother had breast cancer. My friend has two autistic children. What good does a fucking ribbon on the back of my car do? It does about as much as having a PA Save the Wildlife license plate with a Lion on it on my 8 cylinder Cadillac Escalade. NOTHING.

SYMBOLIC GESTURES mean nothing. Do something. Join the Campaign For Liberty. Work at a soup kitchen. Donate a shitload of money to a worthy cause and don't tell anyone you did it. Look up from your blackberry and say hello to someone in the morning. Hold the door for someone else.

Face it. You have these ribbons on the back of your vehicles because you want other people to think you are a good person. Guess what. I see someone yearning for civic character but satisfying themselves with symbolic gestures and celebrity circuses.

I'm guessing the ribbon manufacturers in China are doing well as their 9 year old workers churn out millions during their 15 hour shifts in non-air conditioned facilities with lead paint and asbestos falling from the ceiling. Sounds like a new Ribbon to me.




Walker #1: Hey where's your ribbon?
Kramer: Oh, I don't wear the ribbon.
Walker #2: You don't wear the ribbon? Aren't you against AIDS?
Kramer: Yeah, I'm against AIDS. I mean, I'm walking, aren't I? I just don't wear the ribbon.
Walker #3: Who do you think you are?
Walker #1: Put the ribbon on!
Walker #2: Hey, Cedric! Bob! This guy won't wear a ribbon!
(Cedric and Bob turn around and look at Kramer) Bob: Who? Who does not want to wear the ribbon?