Saturday, February 18, 2006

A culture of secrets

I'm going to violate my own policy by linking to something I find wholly objectional. I'm linking to it because the notion of what I'm writing about is so perverse, I doubt anyone would believe me if I didn't.

Maybe I'm way late to get a clue on this, but capitalist ventures in Europe have expanded their quickly growing business in America: They're selling alibis so you can cheat on your spouse with more efficiency.

For a nominal fee you can buy a forged fax, fake e-mail, or even pay $90 a month for a permanent alibi with live operator assistance.

In a radio interview yesterday in Phoenix, a spokeswoman for The Alibi Network reported half of their business consists of cheating spouses. The other half, to broadly paraphrase her statement, is for moral justification.

Pardon me for casting judgment on the unbelieving world for behaving like ... unbelievers. I shouldn't be surprised, and I'm usually graceful about this in public. I know I should have no moral expectations of a world that cannot see truth beyond their own selfish pursuits. We are, after all, consumers of Internet porn and e-affairs.

And far be it from me to place myself on a moral pedestal. My heart and my flesh are as capable of sinning as anyone's. I'm not deceived that I've achieved some moral highground that I can now cast aspersions on a world and mindset that, honestly, I'm not far removed myself.

There is just an audaciousness to this kind of industry that signals to me we're entering a new age of complicity. We're at a point now where we not only close our eyes to lying, manipulation, and deceit, we're going to empower those who do.

I'm sure someone bright will show me how there's nothing new under the sun, how this is no different than something in the past. For sure, that is true in the element of sin. However, I can't think of any time where society has embraced this kind of behavior as a part of culture. Technology hasn't made us more wordly, it's just allowed wordliness to become a commodity that is easily acquired for pocket change.

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