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Society

The problem with cynicism…

I recently wrote a post on Instagram expressing my distaste of self righteous, cynical individuals. Last week on facebook I voiced my disapproval of an article I shared which mocked charity workers for taking photos with disadvantaged children as it insinuated the individual was doing so to boast and receive praise for their selflessness.

Yesterday my brother and I had a debate about the article. My brother’s argument was that should you wish to undertake charity work why should you feel the need to tell others about it or post photographs about your work on social media websites. He claimed such acts indicated that the individual was undergoing the charity work for praise and as a method of bragging rather than to actually help people. I disagreed. I saw no problem with taking photographs of the work you were doing or with individuals you met. I argued that it all depended on the context of the photo. I see nothing wrong with  sharing a photo of your experience as it could be a means of raising awareness of the charity. Perhaps your photos could even inspire others. I objected to the notion that every individual who shares photographs of themselves with disadvantaged children is doing so purely due to self-satisfaction.

I suggested that there has been a rise in sarcastic popular culture websites which are encouraging a contemptuous attitude among individuals. My brother however argued that there have always been smart-asses.

Perhaps its just that with the rise of social media we are all just more aware of people’s scepticism. However, the issue I have is the self-righteousness attached to the cynicism. The belief that cynicism equates to a higher level of intelligence. I can not stand this type of pretentiousness. This, to me, is far worse than any individual who posts an photograph of themselves undertaking charity work, even if a part of themselves is doing so due to the pride they feel because at the end of the day, there is no such thing as an unselfish act but at least that person is still helping someone. A cynical individual however, isn’t helping anyone. Instead, they are sat upon their high horse belittling everyone else for not being as sceptical as themselves.

Notes:

The article I was referring to is: http://www.reductress.com/cutest-ways-photograph-hugging-third-world-children/

Please also take look at other articles on the site as I feel this will give you an insight into the general tone of the website and you will see why I feel so strongly about it’s sarcastic tone.

A website that I actually think is the perfect combination of sarcastic and humorous is dlisted.com. Although, incredibly cynical it is also incredibly apt and truthful, much like my favourite animated series South Park.

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