Friday, December 30, 2005

"A Thirst To Shock"

"Pick up St. Augustine's 'Confessions,' and find him traveling to Carthage in the year 371, where 'I found myself in a hissing cauldron of lust.' Looking back, he regretted how in his desperate search for love, 'I muddied the stream of friendship with the filth of lewdness and clouded its clear waters with Hell's black river of lust.' This was not the way Augustine saw it in the dissolute days before he found God, and it is certainly not the way our entertainment elite sees love and sex today. But it's interesting how at that time, Augustine found his sorrows drowned at the theater, 'because the plays reflected my unhappy plight and were tinder to my fire.' He was amazed how no one actually wanted to experience sadness and tragedy firsthand, but many were thrilled to watch it faked before them. They wanted the vicarious experience of risky emotional highs and tragic emotional lows without the actual, nonfictional pain. Curiosity could drag them anywhere, to spy on the ribald and disastrous ways 'the other half lived.'...It is a thirst to shock that cannot be quenched. It's an addiction. This element in Hollywood lives to destroy, and must continue destroying to stay alive, so the anti-Western cultural rampage continues. What's next? Nonfictional 'group marriage TV' will arrive on the Bravo channel in the spring, with a documentary called 'Three of Hearts: A Postmodern Family,' featuring a New York triple with two gay men, a woman and two children." (Brent Bozell)