Friday, October 26, 2007

Mediocrity Rules...Man

I've had a lot on my mind lately, and it's only just become coherent enough in my mind to express on this blog. However, I suspect that it's not going to come out too coherent, but I'll let you all judge for yourselves. (Already incoherent, huh?)

In two other blogs to which I contribute, I've explored this idea of mediocrity in its various forms. In one blog, I attempted to interpret the lyrics to a Pavement song, "Starlings in the Slipstream". The song expresses this idea of existing pressure-free in a metaphorical slipstream. The other was a post for MMEET Scholars in which we explore some writing about how we have failed boys by allowing them to be...well...boys. (I believe that MMEET stands for Mizzou Men for Excellence in Elementary Teaching...or something like that.) Either way, this idea of mediocrity permeating through various aspects of "society" has always struck a chord with me.

My point is that mediocrity often manifests in the forms of an existence free of any burdens and
the acceptance of antiquated social constructions as fact or rules by which to live. Rich, white men exist in that slipstream without any real acknowledgment as to how they got there or that the efforts of the disenfranchised helped them achieve their privilege. The social constructions created by those in power helped them get there as well as assisted in maintaining their position.

Have I lost you, yet?

This all came together for me when I was singing to myself the Le Tigre song "Mediocrity Rules". Normally, I sing the chorus with a comma: Mediocrity rules, man! But I soon realized that maybe what Kathleen Hannah is preaching that mediocrity rules man. As long as mediocrity is the standard by which we live, we'll accept anything.

Take the "administration" for example. We have a C-average student who had a nasty coke habit and an inability to verbally express an intelligent thought as our nation's president...twice*! Then, they further prove their incompetence by blindly leading us into an un-winnable war and totally mismanaging the effort along the way. Yes, according to national polls, the majority of the country is not happy with our "situation", but there are still people willing to give it some time to straighten out. Additionally, it looks like Bush's successor is only going to be moderately better.

When are people going to grow tired of the mediocrity? When will we rise up? Probably not tonight, but it will have to happen someday. I guess it starts when we question our privilege or the social constructs that promote those hierarchies.

Until that day, mediocrity rules man.

*I still contend that Bush didn't win either election, but that's old news.


ATR said...

With tongue only half in cheek: citing the current admin as evidence of mediocrity gives mediocrity a bad name. Warren Harding--that's mediocrity. What we have on our hands today: a full-fledged, it's-gonna-take-a-while-to-dig-out-of-this-mess, dyed-in-the-wool, Texas-sized cluster f*&^.

comoprozac said...