One of my favorite intellectual hobbies is to try to stay many steps ahead of society; most notably not by getting angry, scared, or upset over the events of the day, but rather, by foreseeing what it will lead to. It’s a form of self-protection, truth be told. If I can accurately predict even a version of what may be coming, I can not only make any preparations possible, but I am also, therefore, mentally and emotionally prepared when it does and won’t react irrationally. In fact, I probably won’t react at all.
I’ve been jotting down various possible shifts I see coming soon to our culture, and decided to share a few of them. Bear in mind, these are not predictions, per se, but neither are they meant as hyperbolic satire in any way. I absolutely believe each of these things could happen, and I am convinced a version of each of them will happen, lest of course, we make major societal shifts back towards sanity. Each of these premonitions have a 3-5-year window, in my opinion.
I’ve ranked them in order of most-to-least likely as follows:
- LEGAL OPIATES WILL DISAPPEAR: Many events will have to converge on symmetrical time-lines in order for it to play out exactly as I foresee it, but I believe one way or another, this is where we’re headed. No doubt, we have an opiate abuse epidemic in America. Sadly, there are millions who genuinely need these drugs just to function through severe pain and are willing to deal with the side effects just so that they can walk, work and function. They will be the victims of our hysteria culture as the drumbeat to punish doctors and pharmaceutical companies will overload the system and cause the manufacturers and care-givers to tap-out. In an ideal world, an equally effective alternative without such addictive qualities will emerge to help those who need it, but either way, an already enormous black market of opiates will explode exponentially as the war on these drugs escalates.
- AMMUNITION AND SHOOTING BANS: The anti-gun crowd will be emboldened yet again by the upcoming 2020 Presidential election; particularly with President Trump’s unapologetic symbiosis with the NRA and many of the Democratic candidates openly supporting handgun bans and, in some cases, confiscation. While the latter will not actually happen (and any attempts to do so would take years to work their ways through the courts), states that are not friendly to guns will amp up their attempts to find ways to restrict gun rights. Watch, in particular, states with Democratic Governors who we know have presidential aspirations for 2024. California (Governor Gavin Newsome), New York, (Andrew Cuomo), Oregon (Kate Brown), and Colorado (Jared Polis) are the states to most closely keep an eye on. The latter being the most interesting, given Colorado’s western lifestyle and love of hunting, which is where Polis may thread the needle by being pro-hunter and anti-personal handgun ownership. Either way, multiple ideas are being whispered and researched as ways to chip away at gun owners without directly attacking the Second Amendment. Many anti-gun advocates are floating the premise that they won’t ban the right to bear arms, they’ll attack the ability to use them. Ammunition limitations and restrictions are already in place in many states, which has led to the idea that while the states continue to push towards all-out bans and illegal ownership of ammo, they are also researching the viability of making it a crime to shoot a handgun. Owning it will be legal, shooting it, for any reason, will be a crime. While such a law would face immediate court challenges, it would take an injunction to prevent it from going into place for years, and the likelihood that the 9th circuit court (which oversees three of the four states I listed) would grant one are beyond small.
- THE CULTURAL APPROPRIATION OF WORDS: We already know that the absurd notion of anyone not African American wearing cornrows is a racist thing called “cultural appropriation,” defined as: inappropriate adoption of the customs, practices, ideas, etc. of one people or society by members of another.” Other examples include dressing up at Halloween as any race that you aren’t, using the term “spirit animal,” or “spirit person,” unless you are, in fact, Native American, and, perhaps most alarming, calling any culture or race “exotic.” Yes, those are all real, click the horrifying links provided below. With those examples, most notably the latter, it is not long before various words being used by anyone not of that race or culture will be cultural appropriation and, eventually, hate speech. This occurred to me seeing a commercial for an all-day marathon of African-American movies on some cable network under the title “Super Soul Sunday.” What seems to the naïve, to be an innocent play on words a la “Super Bowl Sunday,” is in fact, a dog whistle for the future. Imagine A&E presenting “Super Soul Sunday,” while spending the day highlighting The Righteous Brothers, Boz Scaggs, Bobby Caldwell, Adele, and other “blue-eyed soul,” artists (a term already coined for white artists who sing R&B), and no singers of color? The outrage would be loud and swift from the aggrieved with calls of boycotts and apologies. Thus, the word “soul” becomes solely (pun intended) owned by African Americans. Popular Jewish/Yiddish words and expressions such as “oy-vey,” “ Meshuggeneh,” “Kvetch,” “Schlep,” and even “putz,” and “schmuck,” will soon only be able to be uttered by those wearing yarmulkes. “Bae,” “En Fleek,” and even “finesse,” belong to Black American Culture. And no, I am not making this stuff up as you’ll see in the link provided below which shows there is already a movement afoot to stop the cultural appropriation of words.
- AGE DIFFERENCE RESTRICTIONS IN RELATIONSHIPS: As I said, these are listed in order of probability but when you talk this one through in the #Metoo era, it’s not that far-fetched. We currently live in a society that allows a 50-year-old man to date an 18-year-old woman because both parties are adults and of legal age to consent. However, as we re-adjudicate the Bill Clinton/Monica Lewinsky scandal amidst modern day sexual harassment and assault claims, the on-going refrain is often an older man using his power and influence within the workplace or profession to intimidate a younger, more naïve man or woman into sexual behavior. The “casting couch,” defined as “the exchange of sexual favors by an employer or person in a position of power and authority, from a subordinate in return for entry into an occupation, or for other career advancement within an organization,” has long been known about and, until our wokeness, joked about. In many of the #Metoo stories, threats and coercions are not necessarily present. As opposed to it being a boss saying to a subordinate, “have sex with me and I will promote you instead of someone else,” in many cases it’s simply a grown many having relations with a grown woman 20 years his younger and, also, his subordinate at work. Later, the woman, similar to what Lewinsky has claimed recently, “realizes,” that she was victimized by the allure of a man who had far more life experience and held some sway over her career. It is not long before that seeps into everyday life. Of course, it will only apply to older man/younger woman relationships because women can never be predators (unless they’re school teachers, apparently). At some point, the movement will begin in which we have a “nationwide conversation,” (a phrase that needs to die a swift death), about whether or not it is time to protect young women from predatory men within society. After all, a man of 44 years has, by definition, twice as much life experience as a 22-year-old woman, and six times as much experience as and adult. Therefore, he has learned how to manipulate her, use her to his advantage, bend her will, and have his way with her. The only reason she’s even interested in him in the first place is due to his wily skills. None of these things are her fault, of course, so perhaps it’s time to create a “safe-zone.” Since we’ve already, via the Affordable Care Act, redefined the definition of “child” to 26-years-old, perhaps a law that says while a woman is an adult at the age of 18, she is incapable of consenting to relations with any man 20 years her senior or more until she is age 27. Yes, that sounds reasonable.
- THE MOVEMENT TO BAN MEAT BECOMES MORE THAN A SIDESHOW: The only reason this is the final one is because of America’s love of meat and the too-often ignored indisputably positive impact that meat farming in America has on our economy. However, when the war on smoking began 4 decades ago, 80% of Americans smoked and everyone dismissed the movement as folly. In an age when now just 20% smoke and those who do are pilloried, it is hard for more than half of those alive today to understand the direct parallels. Additionally, the war on meat crowd are following the exact same playbook. It starts with telling you that what you’re doing is bad for you; smoking causes lung cancer, meat causes all sorts of cancers. Secondly, they move to telling you that what you’re doing is harming others; smoking elicits second-hand smoke, eating meat hurts the planet. Third is shame, fourth is financial penalty making the behavior harder and harder for more and more, thus squashing the supply, due to far less demand until the two intersect and allow for calls at all-out bans on the behavior. As the popularity of veganism soars in an era where 75% of people under the age of 30 are convinced the planet is on the verge of dying, the war on meat crowd has begun the campaign of publicly shaming people who consume meat. Stores across the country are reporting stickers appearing on their meat products shaming people (similar to the photos of lung cancer used to try to scare smokers), and as the meat-less burger craze gains steam, the war on meat crowd is emboldened. Simultaneous to the shame movement, the calls for “sin-taxes,” on meat will begin in earnest. After-all, it’s “accepted science,” (junk) that the planet is dying and the emissions from cattle are causing it; therefore, those demanding and consuming the beef (and leather and milk and everything else we get from cows) are accessories to the murder of Mother Earth and should pay a tax on their purchases, thus making it harder to afford and lowering demand and consumption. Thus, forcing farmers to grow more vegetation and raise fewer cows and on and on it goes.
Seriously, take some time to truly sit back and go through each of these thoughtfully; and consider the evidence I have presented. If you can come up with a serious argument against any of them that doesn’t include a personal attack on me, or the phrase “it’ll never happen, just because it won’t,” write or call…I’d love to engage.