An Addiction To Superficial Things?

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“Too many young folk have addiction to superficial things and not enough conviction for substantial things like justice, truth, and love.” – Cornel West


The only beef I have with this quote is that I don’t think it’s just the “young folk” who have an addiction to superficial things. I’m pretty sure the quest for “more”, “better”, and “the best” does not discriminate with age. (And, I guess I actually have beef with two things about this quote. Is he really saying young people don’t have conviction about LOVE?! Has he ever met a young person in love? Now they have conviction.)

What do you think? Do you agree or disagree with this quote?


3 thoughts on “An Addiction To Superficial Things?

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  1. Elise

    Maybe he meant more love and tolerance for family and fellow men, you know how blinkered some younger people (myself included sometimes) can be about others needs! :)

  2. rich

    I would love to say I like this quote. However, I have some issues with it. FIrst, it is general and I think we read into it what we want to see/hear. For example, because of the nature of this site and why we all come here, we interpret "superficial things" as possessions and physical things. It could just as well mean non-meaningful experinces or shallow relationships.

    Also, I really dislike when people generalize a group, such as "young people". I have known, and do know, many young people who, in my opinion, are shallow and lack concern for oothers or things that really matter. However, I also know just as many "old people" like that. I also know many caring, concerned young people" and old people.

    My take on the topic in general. Do many of us pursue and have too many "things"? Yes. Do many of us live under the delusion that acquiring physical things will increase our happiness? Yes. Is this idea wrong? For most of us, yes. Does the collective experience of human experience tell us that it is by focusing on improving our relationships with others and ourselves that we will increase or happiness? Yes. And yes, this is a very hard truth for us to live by. While I know MANY people who espouse this idea, I know only a handful who actually live by it.


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