Modern Moral Panic
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23-09-2016, 04:21 PM
Modern Moral Panic
The USA and the rest of the Western world have been swept numerous time in the past by massive campaign of fear and outrage over overblown social issues and threats if not completly fabricated ones. These campaign profoundly affected the development of the societies who lived them and still resonnate in their culture and folklore. The most famous ones having struck the USA are the Yellow Peril, irrationnal fear of Chinese immigration who was described as out to steal our jobs, import the violence of their country, destroy our economy and impose their religion. While the Chinese immigration was problematic in several regions, it didn't produce half the violence and the chaos it was supposed to. Then, there was the famous Red Scare of 50's where reasonnable fear of USSR spies turned to witch hunt. The most ridiculous one is probably the Satanic scare of the 80's which turned urban legend in absolute hysteria, criminal accusations, company boycott and a surprising amount of really bad movies.

Closer to us, I do believe we are passing through a period rich in Moral Panic since 24/7 media outlet realised how easy they were to exploit and merchandise. Now, I believe we are living a Moral Panic over the dreaded Political Correctness, an issue that is presented as a genuine threat to freedom and democracy despite the fact that no one in its right mind should think so (even those who despise the concept). We are also living in a state of Moral Panic over mass shooting and terrorism, two rather uncommon and benign threat to our security on a daily basis and finally how can we not mention the fear of criminalised immigrants. These three Moral Panics all have their origin in a genuine issue that deserve to be addressed, but are blown so over proportion thanks to media coverage and their political instrumentalisation that it became almost impossible to talk about them, study them or even address them in a rational fashion.

Do you think we are living one or several Moral Panic as we speak, if so which ones and how do you think we can go on to treat them?

Freedom is servitude to justice and intellectual honesty.
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24-09-2016, 04:33 AM
RE: Modern Moral Panic
(23-09-2016 04:21 PM)epronovost Wrote:  The USA and the rest of the Western world have been swept numerous time in the past by massive campaign of fear and outrage over overblown social issues and threats if not completly fabricated ones. These campaign profoundly affected the development of the societies who lived them and still resonnate in their culture and folklore. The most famous ones having struck the USA are the Yellow Peril, irrationnal fear of Chinese immigration who was described as out to steal our jobs, import the violence of their country, destroy our economy and impose their religion. While the Chinese immigration was problematic in several regions, it didn't produce half the violence and the chaos it was supposed to. Then, there was the famous Red Scare of 50's where reasonnable fear of USSR spies turned to witch hunt. The most ridiculous one is probably the Satanic scare of the 80's which turned urban legend in absolute hysteria, criminal accusations, company boycott and a surprising amount of really bad movies.

Closer to us, I do believe we are passing through a period rich in Moral Panic since 24/7 media outlet realised how easy they were to exploit and merchandise. Now, I believe we are living a Moral Panic over the dreaded Political Correctness, an issue that is presented as a genuine threat to freedom and democracy despite the fact that no one in its right mind should think so (even those who despise the concept). We are also living in a state of Moral Panic over mass shooting and terrorism, two rather uncommon and benign threat to our security on a daily basis and finally how can we not mention the fear of criminalised immigrants. These three Moral Panics all have their origin in a genuine issue that deserve to be addressed, but are blown so over proportion thanks to media coverage and their political instrumentalisation that it became almost impossible to talk about them, study them or even address them in a rational fashion.

Do you think we are living one or several Moral Panic as we speak, if so which ones and how do you think we can go on to treat them?

There was moral panic in Poland over homosexuality and it's appearance in media in 2006 if I recall correctly. It was callead a transformative panic as it helped to shit social attitude to homosexuality (Iwona ZieliƄska, "Moral Panic"). It was pretty big clash of right and left.

Some years after it there was outrage against something called "gender ideology" which church hierarchy saw as little better than communism. No one really knew what it was though. "Debate" died after little time as suddenly as it started.

Now there isn't one in Poland I would say but right wingers ramblings about immigrants could be considered one I suppose.

As for treatment - honest information is best thing I think.

The first revolt is against the supreme tyranny of theology, of the phantom of God. As long as we have a master in heaven, we will be slaves on earth.

Mikhail Bakunin.
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24-09-2016, 04:58 AM
RE: Modern Moral Panic
(24-09-2016 04:33 AM)Szuchow Wrote:  As for treatment - honest information is best thing I think.

Treatment is for politicians and media to calm the fuck down and be reasonable. They won't because it's not in their interest.

It's *always* easier to stir up a panic than to calm it down. Reasonable voices are not heard. The panic has to run it's course and everyone has to realise what a load of crap it was.

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(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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24-09-2016, 12:13 PM
RE: Modern Moral Panic
I don't know about a "moral panic" but the insanity of gun violence and disgust and frustration at the lack of sensible regulation seems justified.
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24-09-2016, 12:25 PM
RE: Modern Moral Panic
(24-09-2016 04:58 AM)morondog Wrote:  
(24-09-2016 04:33 AM)Szuchow Wrote:  As for treatment - honest information is best thing I think.

Treatment is for politicians and media to calm the fuck down and be reasonable. They won't because it's not in their interest.

It's *always* easier to stir up a panic than to calm it down. Reasonable voices are not heard. The panic has to run it's course and everyone has to realise what a load of crap it was.

Problem is headlines like, "No Panics or Outrages to Report Today" just don't sell newspapers.

The Daily Wail (Daily Mail) is expert at inflating minor stories into major issues, usually claiming a false moral high ground.

Tomorrow is precious, don't ruin it by fouling up today.
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24-09-2016, 12:46 PM
RE: Modern Moral Panic
(24-09-2016 12:25 PM)Gloucester Wrote:  Problem is headlines like, "No Panics or Outrages to Report Today" just don't sell newspapers.

The Daily Wail (Daily Mail) is expert at inflating minor stories into major issues, usually claiming a false moral high ground.

Gloucester,

Its nice to sit in the cafe with a newspaper, but recently I've been thinking Why TF am I paying to read this depressing garbage?

Been thinking of going on a Private Eye diet. Cool

D.
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24-09-2016, 01:31 PM
RE: Modern Moral Panic
(24-09-2016 12:46 PM)Dworkin Wrote:  
(24-09-2016 12:25 PM)Gloucester Wrote:  Problem is headlines like, "No Panics or Outrages to Report Today" just don't sell newspapers.

The Daily Wail (Daily Mail) is expert at inflating minor stories into major issues, usually claiming a false moral high ground.

Gloucester,

Its nice to sit in the cafe with a newspaper, but recently I've been thinking Why TF am I paying to read this depressing garbage?

Been thinking of going on a Private Eye diet. Cool

D.
Think I bought two newspapers this year.

Both occasions were hospital appointments delayed for an hour or two and I had not brought my Kindle.

So bought the Telegraph, attempted the crossword then left it on the pile of house/counrry life/car/caravanning/gardening... stuff that seems to be all to read. Read it? No thanks!

Oh, how I miss the Readers' Digest with its word quizzes and funny bits!

Tomorrow is precious, don't ruin it by fouling up today.
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24-09-2016, 01:36 PM
RE: Modern Moral Panic
A recurring panic in many cultures, thoughout civilization has been The Rise Of The Wimmin. You hear variations on the theme in modern, industrial USA: the feminization of boys, the emasculation of men, etc. They're taking away our very identity!!!! I suspect it's only partly the average man's fear of losing his privileges; there is also the hierarchy's fear of a nation becoming more civil, less violence-friendly, less aggressive in foreign affairs - next thing you know, gun sales might decline. (No, H. Clinton doesn't pose a threat to US violence.)

Another one you hear, particularly in the US and I think UK is: Persecution of Christians. They're attacking Christmas! They're taking Moses's tablets from the courthouse lawn! They're discriminating against Jesus tee shirts in school! They forced a god-fearing xtian baker to put Bert and Ernie on a wedding cake and the next day his hand turned black and fell off.
Reasons: same as above.

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24-09-2016, 04:39 PM
RE: Modern Moral Panic
(24-09-2016 01:36 PM)Peterkin Wrote:  A recurring panic in many cultures, thoughout civilization has been The Rise Of The Wimmin. You hear variations on the theme in modern, industrial USA: the feminization of boys, the emasculation of men, etc. They're taking away our very identity!!!! I suspect it's only partly the average man's fear of losing his privileges; there is also the hierarchy's fear of a nation becoming more civil, less violence-friendly, less aggressive in foreign affairs - next thing you know, gun sales might decline. (No, H. Clinton doesn't pose a threat to US violence.)

Another one you hear, particularly in the US and I think UK is: Persecution of Christians. They're attacking Christmas! They're taking Moses's tablets from the courthouse lawn! They're discriminating against Jesus tee shirts in school! They forced a god-fearing xtian baker to put Bert and Ernie on a wedding cake and the next day his hand turned black and fell off.
Reasons: same as above.

How could I forget about The War on Christmas, the most horrible conflict since WWII (according to Bill O'Reilly)? Its not really prevalent in American culture outside of some limited circles, but its a good example.

It does also seems that everything linked to sexual identity is cause for an disproportionate amount of Moral Panic. LGBTQ and women's rights mouvements are a challenge to well established doctrines on how a person should act, behave and perceive its sexuality and identity and as such have created a powerful backlash, especially in religious community where those doctrines are held sacred.

Freedom is servitude to justice and intellectual honesty.
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