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| September 25, 2015

THE Everyone Is Talking About The QW-America Told the Truth

After reading article, I want you to write a seven things that shock you andwrite for everyone why shock it you.


DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH What People Really Believe About Everything That Really Matters JAMES PATTERSON AND PETER KIM New VOl!. I Unt.!Ufl -IUhJlIlU Tukyo “An extraordinarily exciting book-shoddng, informative, and disturbing in many of ita implications. A true speUbiDderl” -Nallwliellkanden. Ph.D. “Everybody talb about ethics but theBe two authon did lOIDething about iL The book is a winner.” -Liz Carpenter, former White HoWIe spok.eapeaou.ledurer, and author of Gdting Better Al,,. Time “In milleDAia tocome, students ofour era will find invaluable insighta in this book into . what we really were as opposed to what we daimed to be. For todays reader, it provides that rMest and mOil disturbing of experienus: the truth.” – John praideRt, American AuociatioD of Advedising Agencies, Inc. “Fresh, fascinating, stimulating ••. Wbars new in Amerka in the ‘9Oe-and what endures-will fascinate anyone aHlCemed with aNIUIlunications in our nmon today; and should be required for those deeply concerned about our nation’s future.” -Rjdwd s. lWtJeU, director of MMbting Communication&, Eutman Kodak Company liVery revealing, nut eodly what many of us want to hear, but very believable. This resurch ,.hould serve as a challenge to all of us to tackle the problems disdosed and capitalize on the great strengths confirmed” -C. Aim MacDonald, presideDt & CEO, Nestlt Foods Corporation 1″Patlenon’li a present-doay Polonius, helping ua to know ounelves in a rapidly i changing world.” -Mel Goodes, prePlent ” CEO, Warner Lanlbert Com.,.oy ,HReader8 willleO raises fear and doubt, which of len lead to depression: Did I do the right thing? Does it matter anymore? Does anything matter? Doubl comes with freedom as surely as ash follows fire. Americans in the 1990s haw more of both freedom and doubt-and of depression toothan did any previous generation. In interview after interview, we saw men and women grappling with the cOl1l>equences of their new freedom to define their own moral codes: • If no one I can trust is available to counsel me, how can I be sure thal what I’m doing is right? • Is the other person-my lover, my business partner-playing by some set of reasonable rules? • What are the rules’t My rulcs’t Their rules? No rules at all? 31 32 33 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH Americans wrestle with these questions in what often amounts to a moral vacuum. ‘The religious figures and scriptures that gave us rules for so many centuries, the politiCal system that gave us our laws, all have lost their meaning in our moral imagination. Most Americans (83 percent) now look back to their parents’ day as a time when people were more likely to be moral and as a time when people clearly knew the difference between right and wrong. In addition, we believe that our parents’ generation was much more ethical than our own. ‘k see most moral issues in shades of gray, not in black and white as our parents did. ‘k’ye become wishy-washy as a nation. Some would say that we’ve lost our moral backbone. “I fER STRONGLY EITHER WAY AIOUT THIS ISSUE” We people if they see 5t!t of currenl public issues being “gray” 01 a5 dear case» of right wrong: ,., Petcenr.,e Who See l’elcenUfe Who See Gt.y I/i,ht .nd Wrona Issue 43′” Rights of criminals 57′” 54 46 Affirmatiw iIClion Teat:hing 52 in schoob 48 52 48 Premaritill sex …. 5b The rllht to die …. 5b ,.1 School busing 43 57 Homosexuality 38 62 Flag burning 38 62 Pomography 37 63 The death penally 35 65 Homelessness 33 fi1 ,.1 fighling poverty 33 67 Alcohol abuse Women 31 69 in the clergy 30 70 Anti-Semitism 29 71 ()M)rce 28 n Book banning 27 73 ,., The drug prublem Prayer in Khuols 27 73 27 73 Birth control 26 74 25 75 Communism Abortion THE REAL MORAL AUTHORITY IN AMElICA PERSONAL DOUBT As to their private lives, half of adult Americans said that they had been in situations that caused them to seriously doubt the morality of something that they had done or were thinking about doing. \e asked those people to tell us about the events that bad caused those doubts. Their answers give us a unique insight iitto what actually troubles the moral conscience of Americans, what falls in the gray area between the clearly right and the clearly wrong. Did I Do the Rilhl ThinBll’m Not Sure. What follows is a sampling from our interviews that re’eals the difficulty people have in deciding what’s right and what’s wrong. • A businesswoman from the Southwest. in her twenties, married. recalled: “I had sex with a stranger. Wy good sex, too. I changed my name to hide my real identity from him. I don’t know what’s really right or wrong in this age.” • A store manager from the Southwest, in her twenties. married: “Driving my car under the inftuence of drugs and alcohol. Also, sex with a stranger in a motel in S1. Petersburg. I guess they were both wrong things to do. I’m not sure.” • A ‘kst Coast sales clerk, in his twenties: “Because of my religious beliefs, I’m supposed to believe that having sex with someone of the same sex is wrong. “Et I do it frequently. What’s frequently? Almost every day of my life. The guilt Is still there. though.” • It’s the consequences of sex that severely troubled a teacher from the Midwest 1n her forties: “Advising my daughter to have an abortion led me into a long, suicidal siege. I’m not over it yet. I can picture a baby who never even existed.” • A woman from the Northwest, in her fifties, looked back to a time when she strayed during her first marriage: “My first husband was lazy and mentally abusive. 1 thought I was getting even when I strayed. 1 hurt myself more than him.” And many American men look back in doubt on what they did in war: • ··In Vietnam, I had very serious doubts if what I was doing was moral,” said a Coast post-office clerk, in his forties. “Right now, I have even worse doubts about it.” • A simUar thought process look back a retired manager from the 34 THE DAY AMUICA TOLD ‘HE nUTH Northeast almost 50 years: “I wonder about the bombing I did during \brld War II. TIle country said it had to be done. I’U go 10 my grave wondering if I’m a killer or not… SOUle pt.’opJe broke lhe or laws, for whal at the time lieemed a good reasou-al k:iUit to lhem: • Abanker from the Southeast, recalled: “. forged my mom’s signature when il WiUi impol’laOt tOr me to do so. Otherwilie •• went to jail” • Au adnUnililrator frona the EWit COilIil. in her twenUes, wasn’t bothered about ciwatillg on a &n.d exam: “. had a copy of the exam with lbe iu haud when 1look it. Does it matler? Do exams really anatle..?” • “.lit:d to Social Servicea Il1O J could feed my children. because their rub are uufair to while Americana,” IHlid a mother, divorced aud living atune. • A yi«,.c-preaJdent of a service company in the East: “. rationalize liteaiu.” from OlY wmpany because they have iCrewed me royally. ‘nley look thouliiUlds frolll me. I took lhouliIIKlti from tllt:m. Who’s ‘0 lia)” who'” dghl ur wrong? Nut them, lhal'” for sure.” Some ‘old lies (or Idlll’ulhii uutold) to protecl others or themtidvcb: • “Ilicu ilhuul my husband bcill” wiUucd by lhe law,” said a churchNonbea6tem woman. • “lliCLI Lo lbe police auu said I Willi driving, when my hUlilwld was lur OWl Idriying whOO intoxicaledJ. lie WiAS the aClual driver,” said an office manager fronlth.: \bl Coul, iu ht:r lwenUeti. • A Noa’lhMStem WUllWl whu woeb Wi a &lure managt:I, illllt!1 t:4U”ly laftieb, a fCgulilr churchgoer,lMlid. “I eill out of Iuutie food_, et cetera, around tht: IIoton:. I’ll opeu packages, bnack, tlJt:ll move Ull about auy busiue8s.” • A truck driver “. was a hit-and-run driver. ’10 lbib day, I don’, know il’the pt:1Wll Jhil Wi45 boldly hurt,” What’!; right? Whal’& wrouK? W1Jt:n you are making up your own rult:b. your own moral t:udc..>fIi, it can make 11lt: world a confulOiuK place. Mobl An.cdcalllli arc Yt:r) ..boUl lht:ir pcrlllOual &nun”:; now. 4 –=====:- = American Liars I low did we aclui&IJy gel the truth from people? l:ople iulerviewed knew lhat their answers and IiIOriea were anouymous aud liilfc. They cuuJd finally unburden Ibemtielvea and Bay what lIaey fell. IU m05t pe
ople, it Wil8 exhi1araUn,lO be lhemaelWII for a l.:haugc. Aud ‘his calhartic process was probably dae onJy way we could have golleu at ‘he trulla .uound the country. AmcdcilIllii lie. “Ilaey lie Inure than we had ever abougiat pc••lbIe before tbe study. &Il they auld us dae truth about how much &hey lie. JUSr AHOU’f EVERYONE UES-9J PERCENT OF UE REOO- 1..AIlLY. The majority or us find it hard to let lhrough a week without lying. Out: in live l.:an’t make it through a single dtly-and we’re llIIking aboul COUtiUOUS, pn:mt=(!ilalcd liai. In lact, the Wily IlODle peupIe talk ilhout U-Ylug ‘0 do without belli, you’d tbink that lbey were smoken lryinK to gel through il day without a Cigarette. When we relhun Iromlying, i”» leu often because we think it’s wrong (uuly ·1:’) percent) thau lor a variety of other reuons, anlong tbem leal of IJClIIg L:ilught ( 17 fJCn:cut). 4S 46 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH \e lie to just about everyone. and the better we know someone. the likelier we are to have told them a serious lie. Of course there are white lies and trivial fibs. and the lies we tell to spare someone’s feelings. Then there are serious falsehoods, and 36 percent of Americans. confess to telling that kind of dacker lie, which several people referred to as reallie5. We asked people to define what they meant by a serious lie. Their answers tell into four categories: Serious lies. they said, are those that hurt other people. Setious lies violate a trust. Serious lies involve crime or It:gal consequences. Serious lies are totally self-serving. are about who and what we are. masking the real truth. Everyone lies. but some people lie much more than others. WHO LIES THE MOST IN AMERICAl • Men lie more than women. • men lie more than older men. • Gays and bisexuals lie more than heterosexuals. • Blacks lie more than whites. • Catholics lie a bit more than Protestants. and both lie more than Jews. • Unemployed people lie more than those with jobs. WHO TELLS THE MOST SEllOUS LIES” IN AMElICAI iI I “Men (40 percent) Vi. women (11 percent) ” Homosexuals/bisexuals (52 percenl) vs. heterosexuals (31 percen!) ” BloJCks (51 percent) n. whites III percent) • Catholics (36 percent) vs. Protestants (34 percent) Vi. Jews (25 percent) • Unemployed (42 percent) vs. employed (34 percent) ” Liberals (37 percent) Vi. Conservativeli (29 percent) ill • AlP=s l8-l4 (SO percent) 25-…. (34 percent) Ages 45-64 (29 per<.ent) Ages 65 and older (19 percen!) • I:ople e.illrning less th.illn $10,UUO .iIInnu.illlly (49 percent) Vi. those milking $45,000 01 more III percent) iI I “Serious ilre lieltlill hUll people, iI have legil (oMequ*,nlI!S, or .rl! IOl.&lly IoeH·,*,I’inll· PRIVATE LIVES: ETHICS, VALUES, AND DILEMMAS 47 • The poor lie more than the rich. • Uberals lie more than conservatives. There is some good news about aU this lying: Lying is something we outgrow. (Or truth is a privilege of age.) In any ewnt, people lie less, in every age group, from eighteen to twenty-four on up through the decades. Those 65 and older lie less than half as much as those who are less than half their age. WHAT IS THE ONE LIE ‘K>U WOULD TAkE BACK IF ‘K>U COULDl • A construction worker from the East: ”’ielling this woman, nice girl, I loved her just to get what I wanted.” • A woman from the South who lives with her lover: “I told my mother I hated her-it was a lie. ” • Asecretary in her fifties from the Southeast: “That I didn’t do it-in school-with a teacher, when really I did.” • A man in his thirties from the East Coast, bisexual, married: “‘leIling my mother I’m not a transvestite.” • “That my husband is not the father of our first child.”-a WOOlan from the East Coast. in her forties. • ..Jlow many men I had sex with before we mel There were a good dozen. And maybe a not-so-good dozen.”-a woman from the East. who said that she has bt..oen faithful to her husband during their marriage. • “. had a social disease and. later, she found out anyway.”-a retired man from the Ealltt, who reported four aftilirs during his marriage. THE POWER Of A LIE “Lying is a wilY of pining “a-r owr other people through mmipul.illting them in iI vilrious ways. This is something that children Ie.illm. They .so learn to keep secrets. Sometimes secrets ilre deceptive, .iIInd sometimes they are not. If we are ITlt1ture, we have 10 unlearn any enjoyment of th.illt “a-r. “You have to know th.illt lhe “a-rIs there, and then you h.iIIYe to see If you can possibly live without it. Th.illt doesn’t mean you never get into a situation where lying might be necessary but, on the whole, you try to Ie.illd your life so that you iI cummuniule with other people without Irying tu ITlt1nipulate them.” Bok, philosopher 48 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH WE LIE THE MOST TO THOSE WE LOVE ill AmeriQOs confess to regularly lied to the following: I’erson to Whom Liel Ate Told I’M:etIIIp 01 r.opIe Who tie Puent 116% ill friend Sibling 75 73 Lover 73 69 Boss 61 Child S9 Best friend sa ill Co-worker 56 NelBhbor 49 Grandpuent 47 Work subordinate 4S OoctQr 32 Accountant 22 ill Clergyman 21 Lawyer 20 •.• AND THOSE WE LOVE UE 10 US Petson Who Lies to Us I’eIRnu,e Who Alree ill Friend Child 84″” 13 Co-worker 80 Sibling 80 lover 80 Spouse 78 Parent 7S Itl Boss n Work subordinate n Best friend 68 Neighbor 67 Grandparent 49 Lawyer 42 Itl Accountant Clergyman 34 32 Doltor 31 PRIVATE LIVES: ETHICS, VALUES, AND DILEMMAS 49- asked people about the most serious lie that had ever been told to them: • A man from the Northwest: ‘That a child was mine and, three years later, it was proved he wasn’t by a blood test.” • A woman from the Southeast: ‘That my ex-husband wasn’t having sex with my daughter. ” • A woman in her twenties from the Northeast: “My husband stole $1,000 from me and then bed. I found out the truth six months later.” • A man from the Midwest: “Being told my biological mother was dead, when she liYed a few blocks from me.” • A woman from the South: “My IIeCOnd husband told me he was not a gambler, never gambled. In fact, he was a compulsive gambler. What a pig!” As further confinnation of America’s distrust of authority, 32 percent think that they’ve been lied to by a clergyman. The same applies to accountants (34 percent). And in the case of lawyers, people say it in spades: furty-two percent believe that they’ve been lied to by attorneys. WHAT WE LfARNED ABOUT LIARS What are we to make of all of this lying? Here are some observations that we made, based on thousands of interviews: • Most of our lies are relatively harmless. • Most Americans are not trying to hurt other people with thm lies. • Lying does empower many of us. It allows us to be people we aren’t. It gives us the illusion of control. • There are more seriuus liars right now (liars who do hann) than at any time in our nation’s past. • Inside many liars is an honest person trying to get out. In our interviews, we let some of those people out-for a day, anyway. • Lying has become a cultural trait in America Lying is embedded in our national character. That hasn’t really been understood around the worJd. Americillls lie about everything-and usually for no good reason. • The majority of Americans today (two in every three) believe that there is nothing wrong with telling a lie. Only 31 percent of us belicve that hOllcsty is the best policy_ 107 14 What Men Really Think About Women; What Women Really Think About Men; and the Real Truth About Both Ttll:: sexual revolution of the 19605 and 1910s has left American men and women of the in Iitlparate world!;. nley stare at each other with indifference or, often, hObtility. What do men honesdy think about women? In OUI interviewb, it was t:Videllt dlat the majority of men btUl bet! women through the leub of traditional stereotypes. \blllen art! St:C11 as pUltSycalb, 0 .. at least as catb; lheir Liulogy is their destmy; they nebt; they shop; they cry for no discernible reatiOn. Nonnan Mailer onl:e said, “You dOll’t know anythiJlg ahuut a woman until you meet her in l·mul.” Sylwstel’ Stallone has lx.>t:1I l4uutt..-d ab lohlying, ..
, have alJ the rCillOt)/l in the world to be a misogynist.” What do women really think abuut men? \Umen see men as predators; bullies; boys; the primary provider; even as meal tickets. Most women express some fear and COllcem about the (or viujent) side or Ameril:du men. 106 MEN AND WOMEN IN THE 19905 \bmen still wonder, and worry whether a man can be sensitive and nol be a wimp. This is consistent in both rural and urban parIS of the country. WOMEN ARE THE MORAL SEX One thing isn’t contusing anymore, not to women, nor to men: \bmen are the more moral sex. That’s one of the only propositions that the two sexes absolutely agree on. \bmen he less, steal less, fight less, do drugs less, are less often drunk on the road or on the job. \bmen are more responsible, more loyal at work, more faithful in relationships. \bmen make better citizens, bellel’ team players. Yet it’s still a man’s world. Half of the men and two-thirds of the women said that men have the easier life. (On lhis issue, as on many othetB, blacks parted company with whites. Most blacks believe that women have it easier.) rorty-five percent of men say that their best friend is a woman. Only 31 percent of women find their best friend in a man. MalTiage has been an institution that supposedly protected women from the consequences of male tomcatting. As you might expect, women do not fully share the view that marriage is on the rocks. That marriage “till death do us part” is outdated, that the institution itself will be obsolete by the year 2000, that most marriages will end in divorce: These are all opinions held by some women but by many more men. On the other hand, the proposition that “parents have an obligation to stick it out in a bad marriage for the sake of the children” got the agn!emellt of 41 percent of the men vs. only 26 percent of women. WHAT WOMEN SAY ABOUT MEN IN THE POWDER ROOM \! thought that it would be an interesting experience-for men c!>pedally–lo what some contemponuy women really say about tHen whclI they talk alllong themselvcs. The Sl:cne is an otlice IJuildillg in a metropolitan dty. The partiCipants arc all professional women, college graduates, with an interviewer. MEN AND WOMEN IN THE 1990. 109 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH 108 I iel WOMEN: THE HONEST SEX PEOI’LE WHO B£L1EVE THAT IT’S ALL RIGHT TO LIE … Why To protect oneself To avoid person .. emtJ.rrusment ie I To keep one’s job To make oneteIf look better To gain a ramal! amqunt of money To get even with someone PEOI’LE WHO HAVE STOLEN … iel FIOIlI Whom Store Pilnmt Str.nger Friend ill Lover Neishbor Co-worker Clienllcuratomer Work subordinate Child iel WOMEN: B£TTER WORKERS AcliWly Pilrticipated in unethical p ••ctices lit work Took office supplies ill Lied 10 boss lied to co·worker dlunk at work Uraed drugs at work leit work early without tefling lInyone Hlid an ai/air with a co-wmker Stole valuable company property *’ Goofed uff at work WOMEN: TtiE LESS lARCENOUS Itl Cheated on a test or exam Lil!d on job application without repaying it Cheated on i’l(;ome t.xes ElWlSler,ued un an insurance dlIim Men Women I 52% 56 48 56 35 2& 19 25 15 16 8 Men Women 27% 17% 2S 11 20 6 19 7 15 8 13 8 11 3 10 1 10 3 9 2 7 J #’efCtml..” Men Women 23% 14% 38 32 27 18 19 13 15 4 12 4 19 11 13 6 6 1 35 30 “””,,,,,.,” Men Wumtm 4J% 27% 40 26 .JO 16 29 :lI 27 14 iI Activily Shoplifted Used an ellpeOse account to entertain a personal friend Took a kickback or bribe iI WOMEN: THE MORE DILIGENT AND PERSEVERING SEX iI 8eIieI The Ym( to get ahead is by politics, not by twd MH’k I expect to compromise values to get ahead The only to get ahead is to cheat WOMEN: THE LESS ADDICTED SEX iI Alcohol IIIept drugs Gambling .AddicCioII iI WOMEN: THE GENTlER SEX … People Who Have Ever • •• Gotten into a shoving match Challenged someone to a fight Gotten into a ‘is,fight Hit someone with m object Sent someone to the hoipia.! Threatened someone with a knife Thre.tened someone with II Bun someone with II knife Shot someone with a Bun … knife Gun WflpOn CMried … WOMEN: lHE MOKE SUSPICIOUS SEX AaMly . Searched wallet/purse S«retly gone through spouiellover’s mall Lhe<:ked up on ,pouiellover’s whereabouts l’etcenu,e Men Women 26 16 19 5 15 4 ,..”,.,. Who Ape MM SK 32 20 19 8 MM Women 18% 26 19 12 5 Men Women 61% 3O’JI. 56 26 54 20 15 29 19 5 13 6 13 5 10 3 8 2 Men Women 4% 12 4 lien Women 34% 56′” 28 46 40 4S 110 THE DAY AMUICA TOLD THE TRUTH 111 PelCent18e iI Atliv;’y Men Women child’s room 28 43 Questioned spousellover’s friend 35 42 Secretly gone through child’s mail 23 38 LilOtened in on spouseJlover’s phone call 19 28 in on child’s phone call 17 25 iI Secretly fol”-d spousellover Secretly followed child 22 18 22 16 iI I ANIMAlS WE ASSOCIATE WITH THi OPf’OSITE SO ANIMALS MEN ASSOCIATE WITH WOMEN: l’etcentl8e AnirMI 01 Men 41″‘- ill Dow/bird 6 Deer/doe 4 umblsheep 4 ANIMALS WOMEN ASSOCIATE WITH MEN: hrcetl,.,e ill AnirMI 01 Women Dog 23% 21 GorilWapelmonkey 8 Donkeylhorse 5 Wolflfox 5 ill Bull/ox 4 4 INTEIlVIEWt:R: Please write down the first thing that popli into your mind when I say “women.” WOMAN # 1: “Superior Race.” I just think that women are baliically beller than men. I think that they’re more interesting, more emotional, inwKhtful, have a lot more depth to their character, are more open, are more caring, are not that limited. They’re emotionally more open than men, alld intere1iting and loving and limart. WOMAN #2: “(;rcat and imerebtillg.” If I think about peuple I know and the people I care about, aud the people 1 think are bpeCial, I tcnd to have many more women than men who fall in that category. MEN AND WOMEN IN THE 1990. WOMAN #3: “Understanding.” When you talk to a woman, she listens, and she hears what you’re saying. Whereas, when you talk to a man, it’s just what’s there. You don’t get any more. I think men do not hIM! the feel for the way our needs change. With a man, it’s like being in a time warp. It’s as ifhe’s saying, “w,ut a second. ‘«>U just got me bent all out of shape because you were crying. n And the woman says. “Ob, that’s past. I’ve gotten rid of that” The man goes off and has a heart attack, and the woman has totally gotten it out of her system. ill WHAT WOMEN WD AIOUT MEN ACI05S AMERICA Things that women to us about men: o “How dumb they … they’re not brain surpons, not _ the brain surgeons.”-a youns saJeswomm from the wt, never muried, lives with her lover. if o “I think Mick Jager had rare insight: ‘Men busts of burdenl”’-a WOIniln from the East Coast. o “The best man, tmt keeper, gives good check… · -m EHI Coast woman, twice. o “I think men hiwe a Ireat sense of fairness. If you keep everything on that they respond very -‘1,”_ psychologist from the West Coul, iI married. • “How well can he perform”’_n educator from the South, in her flftIes, never married, lives alone. o “Tmt they can be Iyinl asshoIes.”_ nlneteen-year-old laborer from the Midwest, never IMls with roommate. • “Give me nice biceps. 1’1 jump on tmt myoid time.”_ Wesl Coast widow if in her late twenties. • “Perverts, by and larse. They are one thing.”_ mvried woman trom the Midwest. In her euly twenties. • “Need mother 10 tell them what to do. Sometimes, I like that too.”_ West budget assistant. in her thirties, married. o “How they are in bed and the size of their dick. For talk and companionship, I’ve lot lots of girl friends.”_ married from the Southwest, if in her late thirties. The talk eventually turns to the real role of men in their lives: WOMAN # I: 1 don’t have any friends that are men. I mean, it’s about sex lor me. I lee! very fulfilled in all other areas. 1 really think I’ve built up a lite where I can almost function Without a man. WOMAN #2: I feel like I’m not valkJated without a male partner in some ways because I was brought up that wJ.y. You know, very strict, Catholic. Hut there’s the other tiide of me that is completely validated withuut them. 1 do matter in this world Without a man. 112 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH 113 WOMAN #3: That’s an issue that a lot of women feel the same about. I think you just said it. A lot of women in their late thirties wh
o are not paired off with somebody have that exact feeling, like they feel very good and accepted in other aspects of their lives. WOMAN #2: Bul they’re not validated. WOMAN #3: Yeah. WOMAN #4: It’s like you have to take care of men. It’s not two strong, equal individuals who are coming together at the same place. I feel like the woman is more intigrated and stronger and bas been through more. And then here comes this guy who has needs and speaks with a forked tongue and acts like he’s liberated. But he’s not liberated, and he doesn’t really want you to be independent either. It’s … I don’t know. I just think they’re not as evolved. WOMAN #5: I think the only successful relationship I’ve ever had was with the first man who wasn’t threatened by my career. And that’s the man I married. WOMAN #6: Think about the times when you’re away from home on business. I find that men are completely helpless when we’re not around, and you see another side of them all of a sudden. He’s like a very strong, macho man, who can do everything. And you go away on business for two weeks, and they fall apart. It’s like they don” know what to do wilh themselves. WOMAN #5: ‘abu know what else is interesting? When spouses die, almost within the year, men will hook up with somebody and remarry. I think they need a pill·tnCI” no malter. I think women are much stronger and don’t need to jump into the next relationship. WOMAN #6: Actually, a lot of widows become amazingly euphoric, even if they loved their husbands. WOMAN #4: See, I wish sometimes men could just act like women. WOMAN # 1: The whole idea that the man is supposed to be the strong person in the relationship and the provider, we’re criticizing all of these things about guys-and then, on the other hand, when they’re not that way, it’!> sometimes perceived as a lack of strength. INTi:RVIl-:WER: ‘That’s a point. A lot of women I know break up relationships if the guy’s wimpy. WOMAN #2: So we’re saying, “Why can’t they be more like women?” \bmen an: women arc emotional. women are vulnerable. Then, when we find men like that, we don’t WolDt them. WOMAN #4: I used to ha’e male mends, but they’re never as good as female friends. WUMAN #2: AU my male liicnds arc gay. INTl-:RVII-.WER: Wheu II)ClY lhe word “mcn,” write down a word. MEN AND WOMEN IN THE 19901 .. “MOMMY” “I love intelligent women. I love to go home md talk to women who want to talk about politics or birth control or, God forbid, baseball. forty years ap, my mother didn’t go to college, she didn’t go to high school. She was one-dimensional, raised the kids. And one night, the night my father died, I stayed up until five o’clock in the morning with our two friends, drinldna beer with my mother, tr which I had never done in my life. And I found out that here was a woman that WiS incredibly talented, an incredible brain. I thought of her as Mommy. Then, aU of a sudden, she’s telling me she listens to Itzhak Perlmvl and all these things when my father wasn’t in the house, because he felt threatened that she liked something he didn’t understand completely. And I think that was very typical of that generation. And what a damn sNme. And it’s too bad we don’t spend more .. time understanding who women really are, and they don’t do the same really finding out about who we are.” -Man, in his Nte forties, white, fu’ll sit and you’ll spend two hours having dinner with them, and they’ll tell you everything about themsel’es. And they won’t ask a thing about you. I don’t think the key to a mau’l> heart is through his stomach. It’s through your ears. Because llhink that men will fall in love wuh you ifyou’re a great listener. INlt:RVIEWER: What would you say is the greatest area of conflict between men and women? WUMAN #4: Control. Who’s going to sit in the driver’s seal WHAT MEN SAY ABOUT WOMEN IN THE LOCKER ROOM The participants now are all professional men, friends, drinking buddies. I Jere are the kinds of’ things men say about women over a few beers. Just teU us the farst word that pops into your mind when you think of women. MAN III: “l’:rratic.” My mother was erratic. My sister’s err-me. I think nne uf Illy duwnlalls is uupn:dil:lablc and erratic women. MAN #”2: “Uluptuous. II 114 115 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH MAN #3: “Ambivalence.” \bmen have two personalities-modern-day women anyway, the ones I deal with. They have this necessity to prove themse!vt:s in the business world, or to prove themselves the equivalent of men on a lot of levels. But underneath it all. there’s this driving desire to make a nest. So paIt of them is constantly fighting. can meet the most qualified woman intellectual, and underneath that, when you scratch the surface, you lind SOIlleone who wants to build a nest. MAN #2: I think when a girl is coming up the street, men look at her tits. Nobody looks at &heir minds. And that’s all they say: “What’s the matter? Why don’t you look. at my mind?” Which sex has a better fix on the needs and priorities of the sex? MAN #-1: \Vmen are more perceptive about life in general. Plus they spend much more time thinking about certain things than men do. Men are in buliiness doing this or that. \bmen have more time to do it. They spend half their life doing that. MAN #3: People came in and made women aware that they had brains and tha’e was something better in life than just raising children. \ell, that may be right and may be wrong. But it still goes against everything in nature. INTERVIEWER: What do you think are the ground rules today? MAN ;;3: I belieYe tllere are new ground rules. 1don’t quite unde[t;land them, and that’s why I stay wilhout a relationship. MAN #2: I think there are instincts deep down with women, MAN # 1: They’re unlJelievabJe. MAN #2: \bmen tlUllk-no, they Imow-we’re providers. MAN #-1: The need to have a lJaby is unbeliev-olble. TIley have no control over it. Something inside them is saying, “bu got to reproduce. ‘lUu have only so many more years. Reproduce! Reproduce!” MAN # 1: \bmen are captives of their bodies. MAN #2: Of course they ate. MAN #4: It’l get married again (I got married twice) 1wouldn’t marry a woman that works. I don’t want to get involwd with women that work. It intericres with life. I like to play a lot of golf on weekends. And if you can’t hack that, don’t get involved with me. That’s my opinion. Do you think it was better the way it was, when women stayed home? MAN 112: \bmen ar!!n’t dedicated to business the way men are. 111ey come in at nine, they work until five. In my opinion, I think thal, basically. they’re looking lOr a husband. They’re not going to go and !;UplJOll the family–,·at !caslllOl if tlwy have a choice, MAN # 1: I ieel a ll’cmenduus amount of cOII,’ulSion in my gcncration. MEN AND WOMEN IN THE 19901 MAN #3: I think women have more difficulty dealing with men’s idiosyncrasies than men do dealing with women’s idiosyncrasies. INTERVIEWER: Are women more honest than men? MAN #5: I think they are, yeah. They think they’re more honest, see. They blurt out stuff that we can’t understand. MAN #4: One pussy hair has got more power than a church full of saint!). I wish I could say it in Italian. That’s women’s power and their strcngth. That’s the only way they can control the male. ONE CONCWSION A bad altitude exists right now between American men and women. TIlis attitude is conUibuting to the problem between the sexes. A majority of men believe that women expect men to undel8tand women’s emerging needs but that women aren’t willing to reciprocate with men. They don’t try to understand the problems of being a man. Men feel that the situation has become completely unfair and weighted against them. “Men die earlier,” one man said. “and I don’t think women have stopped to think about why that’s so. Most men have the pressure of responsibility thrust on them, and it goes from cradle to early grave.” Thi!) bitterness is widespread, and it rum deep among the men we talked to. It surfaced in interview after interview, when men began to talk about what they really think and belie’e. It’s creating a countertrcnd tuward the past: the old TBtA (tits and ass) synd
rome is returning. It also hilt; the potential to spawn a rtM>lution among men-a men’s movement. \Umen have changed during the past couple of decades; that is clear from our interviews. w’men are more confident about tllemsehes, more outspoken, much more involved in the work force. 1be previous documentation of this a(;curately matches our data: W,men’s superiority in moral!; and ethics, while suspected by some, is o’elWhelming. The rhetoric or the women’s movement, however, seems to have helped to l:reate caricatures of men, stereotyping, and bigotry. Alleast, it came up often in our interviews. As necessary as this stereotyping may have been as a catalyst 10 change, it bas now become another obstacle to Il!l:ondliation bet ween the IieXe8. Hut stereotyping is happening with both sexes right now. Most men and women seem to have little experience that results in an understanding uf the oppotOite sex. Their views are largely shaped by myth and word (If IIlCluth frolll I’licnds. Listening to American men talk about women is like to them talk alxJUt world VOUtics. They know very little, but 116 .’. THE DAY AMfllCA TOLD THE nUTH iI WHAI MEN ACIOSS AMOICA SAID AIOUT • “They’.e In!ed)” 1e5M!f deipr from &he in Ihiniei, newf ……..itId. • “Mt!n oUtI 10 WOIIltIn. The proof is ewrywhere. Who runs the world”’—an eu..t nloUl, in thirties, 1IW’,i¥d. • “They Kt Met drew lUG much like men, ret they newe, pick up lhe tI ch«k.”-in E••, CuMI mnwnne” in hil Menliel, A_r m,mied, liveli alone. • “Sure, WOr1WII IlKced Ihe bul at leilil men made an clio,. to undersund whitlhear neeldi .re. Wonwn .t..cotype men iInd .nak. no effort tu Undef5tilnd.”-40 E… eo.ul wklwnan. IIW’ried. • “They’re a hull. pain in !he “$ bul nice 10 Iwve around. II-an unemployed iI min from …, t …, in hili Ihirlifi, dillUfced. • “They ••e only “uod 11K one thinS; two, if $he an Soulheln cop, in his fortie., “,.,ried. o they … :.urry bitches iInd only lood ‘or one thing.”-il Midwestern Wllldltr, lwetlliclt, IMMtr married. • “. know why m)’ wi’. like;; modern dinee. I love il lhat .he doe•. She’, made no Iv urWt:.liund why ltuve the thinp I du.”..; Ioiwyef ‘rURI the South. iI • “TheY’fll COWVlt. Yuu willk intu Mly k·MarI in &he counlly, you’lI ..e nothinl bUI LOWI, Isu.fotnle. il.”-.”, It.ilion OWVRer ‘rurn abe MidM:ltl. • “This _’I velY elllishilmlld uf me, bul ii’, Kc.:ur.le. When man a WOIfI””, two thing’ One, lhe wom.1Il c.:hinKelt; two, Irio!l 10 yuu. AllllUltt 1111 Ill.” will diwK,t:e with Itwl.”-il mltd;,•• tI dtA:tOl OR &/11: Weltl C.,.)l. what Ihcy know. lhey’l’c ;adamant about. \bmen uncn tlllk about mcn Wilh Ill&.! saUte lack uf real Aud “aey’r.: iu’h:xilJlc about llitlir views ill> wcU. lu iutcrvicw ailer illterview. bulh :;CXCIt werc cu· trcndacd in lhei.r ..cutyfltlb and prcjudiccb ahoul the wher sex. Ahuu:;l hlllf uf alll11cu dUlik uf WUUM:ll ab IJUtllllli. AJiuu:.1 half of .ill lhiuk ul’ meu a:. dO”b ur pn..’tIatocb. WORK 147 21 Modern American Business: Greed at the Top Much has been written on the loss of world market share by American businesses and why we can’t seem to compete the way we used to. According to thousands of workers and bosses, one very important and underestimated reason is clear: The perceived low ethics of management is a major cause of our problems in the business world. Greed in American management is out of control. Never have !iO many taken su much, right otl” the top. It I THl ROUIU WITH IUSINISS TOOoW “The trouble with the rat race is tNt ewn if you win. you’re ilill a r.”” -lily Jumlin When we asked about their business ethics, American executives pointed a shaking finger of guilt-at themselves. ‘Illey know that they’re doing wrong. The managerli’ viewli of their 146 own actions, their own morality, is even lower than the one their workers have of them. In addition, modem American managers show little loyalty to their companies, to their workers, or to the public that buys those products. American workers reply with absenteeism, petty theft, indifference, and a generally poor performance on the job. The American business system often creaks and grinds to a halt, and it’s the ,Japanese or Europeans who get the next order. The syndrome has gotten worse every year of the past decade. Let’s start at the top and see why. THE BOSSES FUmier NCAA chanlpionship basketball coach AI McGuire once 0bserved, “. think the world is run by C students.” McGuire has pretty high standards, and he keeps being disappointed by the leaders he meets. The consensus is that our business executives are enrtching themselves beyond any kind of acceptable level, while impoverishing America. As a direct consequence, there is no loyalty in many companies. The very idea iii scorned: “You want loyalty? Hire a cocker spaniel'” one of our iDlerviewees told us. Other thoughts we heard: • “GM isn’t what it was, and they were never all that great to us.”-a GM worker. • ‘1’here used to be a sense of family around here-not since the buyout.”-a General Rxxts manager. • “You want to be loyal, you wdnt to belong to something better than It AMEllCA AND JAPAN: THf D1FFUENCE IN UKUTIVE PlIVILEGE “Tht! income gap between American and Japanese busine55 executiws is astound· ing. . . . There is no that 101 Japanese executive) coutd expect to equal the luxuries enjoyed by American eXKutiYes. Mr. Matushita, probably the wealthiest nwn in j.lpan, when traveling abroad with his secretary, uses regular commerciill It llighb. HiVing .. private pWle is simply out 0′ his realm 0′ consideration. “,An Americanl corporate chairman with whom I am acquainted complained thaI he has no use for all the money he receiws. His company is doing well, and his income is in the muhi-million-dollar-a-year range. His children ;are all,rown, .1Ild he .. nd his wife already hiVe ViKation villas, a yacht, and .. private airplane. Ue they just have no to spend any more money on themselves.” -Akio Chilirm.llll of Sony Corporation It 148 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH yourself, but they make it impossible. “-a Shearson Lehman executive. • “Everybody is for themselves now. Nobody’s for First National Bank.”-a First National Bank of Chicago employee. • “They lie to us single day.”-a ronner Ykndy’s employee. • “.Jameli Brown it; in jail while Ross Johnson walks free. Something’s wrong here. “-a tunner RJR worker, a black woman. ·1 TEN ,a:RY LARGE GOlDlN PARACHUTES To/al DolIN NiIme MId Tirle ComfWlY Pad.age Retired $22,400,000 Robert M. Price, CEO Control Data Resigned 13,500,000 ., R. Gordon McGovern, CEO Cimpbell Soup Resigned 11,100,000 G4lrth H. Drabinsky, CEO Cineplex Odeon Resigned 7,400,000 Joseph G. Temple, ExKulive Dow Chemical Resigned &,500,000 Vite-President Terrence D. Daniels, Vice- W.R. Grace Resigned 5,800,000 Ch.tirman Jan Lo:!schly, President Squibb Resigned 5,400,000 ., Myron I. Gottlieb, Vice-Chairman Cineplex <>deon Resigned 4,500,000 Horst W. Schroeder, Pre)ident Kellogg Resigned 3,800,000 Kenneth J. Thyger)on, Chairman Imperial Corp. John M. Richman, Vice-Chair,.,.n Philip Morris Resigned 2,bOO,000 SouK”; BU5ineu Wee,;. 7, 19’JO Several workers told us about the unethical things they’d actually seen executives do. The misc.leeds 1II0l;t often wimessed: intimidating and threateniug employt..-es; violating job safety standards; discriminating against Wacks, Hbpanks, or Asians; discliminali.llg against WOllltm; sexually l….rassing womeu; oven criminal actions; making products that endange.· lives. On w..U Street and ill HoUywood, two places where the sharks are especially thick, there’s .1 common feeling that the younger carnivores are even more voradous than their elders. “It’s like Lord oJ tile Flies, with the yuppies in middle management,” said one husinessmall we spoke to. ··It’s emotiouaUy draillillgjustto LOUIe to work illlhe morning.” The movie busilless wali never particularly noloo lor its business morality. But .Jere IJcllshaw. a produl:cr who’s bt!cn around for thirty years, tuld the to:> Allyt”it:!) Time!) that the new breed of lloUywuc.x.I WORK 149 • A NEW YOIUC EXfCUTIVE TEL
LS HOW THE SYSTEM \OIlS “Not every but too many senior executives hiM! their price. That’s why there are these exorbitant salaries at the top of a lot of companies. We won’t admit It, not even to ourselves, but we’lIt! been boupt. If we deliver profits, at almost any cost, then we set ludicrous bonuses–millions of dollars. “This is how the system works and it’s repeated in most companies: Money Is • • put on the table fof lop executiw!s, especiIUy the top dot- A lot of money. Enough money to make it impossible for the exewtille not to do what Is ‘necessary.’ Let’s yY it’s $15 mU110n if the numbers are jf they aren’t. That kind 01 money can cause someone to rationalize a lot of decisions, especially when it comes to cutbacb. In a sense, the bi8 money packaaes create a conflict of interest for the executive: ’00 Ido the right thins by my peopIel Or by the bottom line (Including my bottom line)l’ An incredible amount of ration- • alizing goes on. ‘This is for the good of the company; it has noth”” to do with my $15 million.’ That kind of interior dlalosue. “I’d like to say I could rationalize what l’lIt! done in terms of people in my own company. I can’t. I was bought.” -Man in hI5 mid-Iorties, white, _ned, urns .ax- $5IID,IIOO it year plus bonuses. lOSSES vs. WOUfIS ill Question MatYam Who -“11ft Wottm Who-“llft Who works harderl Workers 43′” 31 18 ·1 Who is more ethicall Workers 37 37 Managers 13 19 ., Who more greedyl Workers 10 15 Manclgers 61 53 Who is more trustworthyI Workers 32 ..0 14 14 .1 Who takes credit for another’s workl Workers 18 23 50 51 ., Who cares mosH Workers 2& 41 Molllagers 29 24 150 ,., THE DAY AMERICA TOll> 1 HE nUTH has tumed the perwuaJ ,rUtillhal ulied to govern into a joke, “The older hands dePl’etibed,” IJemJUlw said, a lack of moriility …uong the ),uuugt:r SCl. 1).1110 lJecuna.: il WiAY uflUe. What’s fruSll’,lliug is that I dUll” any uWilziw’aWe rt:waN fur hOllt.’St), or fortlulghulCSS, .. .” ETHICS: Ull Iltl’OlT Thint percenl oi Alnt:1 h:iln WI kim. wr II …. Iht:il enlf*Jyel ill oAt 1,,4»1 one u, Ihe ‘oIlowins ul un”lhkoll Alivilie,,; • hie “””’&” ul “”’I'”,i,”a Inlimw.les oImJ 111I”.aI.,II” regul … 1y VioI.le» job wiel)’ »1………1.1. .. OiSt li… “Iain!>1 Ith”oIniu., 01 11 (liM. fllninile” 01 >cll…alI)’ h.., .. diem II • I Ln”,1iC’ in 5 ..uke,. prodLK:b Ih.l e”ll.&lIlI’:’ hUAloIIi live,; .. • I IIUSINtSSfUUO IN lilt Ntws —_._——————— stori”, It..” .al” .UllullUlifJl.ale t…J.a) Itloll tlK:)’ ullt:n dOl… ellCIi ……. c the “UlII ” ul “lhe Gene.'” EI”‘-IIK. Cl.lllliWlt)·, wtlll.h in .. jury 1II.II.I’I.Ivcn I””H’ It inl Ih… Army lUI • Lwuld.dd “””‘pule’ …1I.e”… )’e,leld.” Iu JloI), une til lhe e>t!f 1<11 lJelroAudillll,he I)elc ….. Ucp.ulmcili. t,. 1. \,111 P”Y millioH III uilll”‘.! 0111″. ivit • “lhe Norllul.lp l:or”ul.liun lu IJol) $1711l1l1iun ‘u, 1.aI,ilyillK Ito” dollol un UJrnlklflenb 01 11M: lIIis,jlto .ntllhe 1i0l1lK:1 the 1.I’lIl’)1 fI..”loIIY I100u.1 ‘coAlh”.’ ill wh.!11 Ihe l.I.IIPOI”,I”‘1I IUI<.I ) ..; mil/lUll ‘Uf Ihc ••1)Vl’III,”CIIII.., nll’n”,,) ./IM!” hHi ,,,”,,,, lui) !t, 1’rAJ 22 American Workers Get to Tell the Truth Here is the quid pro quo ill the American workplace today. American workers are as disloyal to their jobs as their bosses and compauies are perceived to be disJoyalto Ulem. Over their life span, Ule averaKe American worker will spend 76,900 hours on UJe job. That’s a big part of their liveli-hy far the biggest waking activity. But to heal” person after person tell it, Americans make poor use of thot>e working hoon;. Q: How many people work in your office? A: Ahout half of them. That uld joke hm’, far frum the truth in lhe 1990s. 154 WORK 155 THE TRUTH AS WORKERS SEE IT The so-called Protestant ethic is long gone from today’s American workplace. W>rkers around America frankly admit that they spend more than 20 percent (7 hours a week) of their lime at work. totally goofing off. That amounts to a foor-day work week across the nation. Almost half of us admit to chronic malingering, caBing in sick when we are not sick. and doing it regularly. One in six Americans regularly drink or use drugs on the job. Only one in four give work their best effort; only one in four work to realize their human potential rather than merely to keep the wolf from the door. But then, why should we? After all. half of us genuinely belieYe that you get ahead not through hard work but through politics and cheating. About one in four expect to compromise their personal beliefs in order to get ahead on their current job. CAN’T GET NO SATISfACTION Only one in ten say that they are satisfied with their jobs. Only three in len Americans tMly tbat they are loyal to their companies. IV REGION: MODliN AMERICAN WOUfI5 ill (For a map of Ameriu’s reSions, see Part I.) VERY SATISFIED WITH JOB (National Average: 20%) Re,ion llegion ii’ M.ulboro Country 35′” New South 19% Old Dixie 33 Pac Rim 18 Granary 2S Metropolis 17 L.A.-Mex 22 NewEnstand 12 Rust Belt 19 PUT TOTAL EFFORT INTO JOB (National Awerase: 45%) ill Re&iOll Resion l’ettenu,e Marlboro Country 65% Metropolis 43% New South 52 Old Dillie 40 Granary .q Pac Rim 39 l.A.-Mel( 46 New Enstand 27 ill 8elt 45 156 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH Americans are happiest and do their best at work in Marlboro Country. New England is at the opposite pole: Its residents admit that they are the least satisfied with their jobs and the least willing to give work their total effort. Few of us are willing to put the public interest above our pocketbooks. Most people told us that they would quit their jobs before they would take a pay cut so that the following problems could be fixed: • DiSCrimination against women, blacks, or Hispanics • ProduLtion of products that endanger human lives • Prevelltion of employee layoffs without sufficient notice • Pollutiull of the environment The reason they would quit is key: Americans don’t trust the managers who make these financial decisions, supposedly for the common good. They believe that managel”S make decisions with only their own interests at heart. Why then should workers be the ones to sacrifice? Many American workers say that they cannot trust their co-workers (43 perceut) or subordinates (38 percent) in the cunent business environment. Maybe it isn’t surprising when you listen to what people say about their jobs. WHAT PEOPLE SAY ABOUT THEIR WORK In the boardroom. “\e were all millionaires, yet we thought it compassionate that we took no bonus at a time when thOUsandlli were being fired in our compauy. That’s how out of touch we’d become.” Stealing. “Our night manager steals from the company nightly. \e caD him The Burglar.” “Everybody steals supplies out of the warehouse.” “Co-workers take money out of the cash regititer,” “My boss has taken money and giveu mercha.ndise aW’tly.” l¥iDg. “Bosses often ask someone to say a job’s done when we haven’t even started.” “‘There’s constaut lying to clients about completion of quotas,” “We all lie to clients, everyone of us, to everyone ofour clients.” Cheating. “Cheating people out of pay.” “Leaving work without finishing the job.” “Shameful misuse of company materials and company time.” “Cuver-ups for jobs not done.” “Hdsification of a lot of sheets which gel billed.” Sex. “Secret meetings in the closet. … My girl friend is botling the boss lunch.” “Employees loving each other in the store alter we close.” “Sexual harassment by our gay bosli. He hits on the men ill his departmeul. ” WORK 157 It THE lOP fiVE OFfICE CRIMES 1. Takins office supplies and equipment 2. LyinS to a boss or co-worker 3. 5tealins company funds 4. Affair with a boss or co-worker S. TakinS credit for work not done It Doctoring document•• “Falsified reports.” “Shady accounting.” “Signing someone else’s name.” “Altering of many official recorda,” “Signing by other people, not the applicant.” “Using false company names.” “People falsifying forms for leave.” “Incorrect work turned in to fiU quotas. Everything we do down in South America!” OFFICE CRIME It’s not surprising that we se
e so many locked doors or that companies are turning to what’s called “integrity testing” in rising numbers. These are tests (not including lie detectors, which are banned by law) that are given to job applicants in an effort to screen out would-be tbiew:s. This kind of business testing is growing by more than 20 percent a year. Super D Drugs, a chain in the Southeast, turned to integrity testing after a dramatic rise in what they called “shrinkage.” The company’s Vic:e-President for Loss Prevention said that the tests are already saving $400,000 in stolen goods. The New South, where Super D Drugs operates, ranks second only to Metropolis in its rate of unethical employees. Old Dixie is close behind those two. You don’t have to bolt the door quite so tightly in New England and Marlboro Country, where workers’ ethics are strongest. The Case for Hirinl Women O country simply behave more ethically than men. On every question we probed, American women in the workplace held to a higher moral standard than men did. 158 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH .. IOSSlS AND WORKERS: THE GlOWING GAP MBelWeen 1981 and 1969, the net worth of the Forbes 400 richest Americans narly lripled. Corporate executives also made strides in this area. In 19110, corporate Chief Exec:utive Officers made roughly forty times the income 01 iM!raae ‘iCtory workers. 8y 1919, CEO, _re makin, 93 time, ill much.” .. -kvln Po PhIllips, aulhor 0′ The I’oIiIia 01 aIch MId Poor. We.1hh MId the Ametian aectorite in the ItuBMllJtemlillh Most women-but only a minority of men-are loyal to the company that pays them (60 percent vs. 46 percent). Less than half as many women as men believe that the only way to get ahead is to cheat, and not as many believe in politics rather than work as the way to success. In addition, women are much less willing to compromise their values to get ahead and somewhat more willing to quit as a matter of principie if they learn that their company is engaging in illegal activities. I.ook for the In their on-the-job behavior, women are less likely, usually by pretty big margins, to take office supplies home, to malinger, to lie to bosses and co-workers, tu leave early, or lO goof off. Management is much less likely to find a woman drunk at work or on drugs. If valuable company property is stolen, the thief will be a man six times in seven. At work, as in private life, women set a higher standard of ethics. AMERICA’S BUSINESS FUTURE High-school seniors proved even more cynical than aduh business executics. If you listen to our high-school seniors today, greed will be even morc prevalent when they are running American industry. On each of a dozen questions, seniors held lO a lower standard of ethics-usually much lower-than did the adults whom they would one day succt.:cd. beuer mousetraps interests the seniors even less than it dOt:S those Willi run Americall industry today. The statement, “Prime objective of bUliinl’:’s ilt to fJl’Ildun: the Ix!st product for the lowest PI1CC.” wuu the agreement of one-third of the adult bu!;inelts people Vlt. only ‘2.7 pcl’l;cmt of the hlgh-sdlOOI students. WORK 159 WHAT MIDDLE CLASS KIDS MISS: THE lOY Of GIVING * “One of Ihe most incredible things to me, really, is to see the typical middle class kid who’. given everything he wants, except the privilege 01 service, the privilege of 5elf-5oKrifice, and the joy of being a giver. We’ve become a pa5sive soc:iety that iees everything in terms 01 our open it with something I The idea that we can actually do things for something broader __ community-i$ lost. ” -Willard Wylin, bioelhicist * Someone doing business with these high-school seniors is well-advised to get paid in advance: “Do you think that a company which is going bankrupt has a moral obligation to repay its debt?” “Yes,” said 56 percent of business executives. “No,” said a larger majority (62 pt!rcent) of the senion. Similarly, almost all of the adults “would replace a faulty product made by Ilhdl’} finn even if under no legal obligation to do so.” Fewer of the seniors would do the right thing if they weren’t under the gun of the law. The kids on lying and cheating in business? They were twice as willing as the adults were to do one or the other in the course of business. \buld you “consider lying to achieve an important business objective of lhe firm’!” “Yes,” said two-thirds (66 percent) of the seniors vs. less than one-third (29 percent) of the adult executives. “U a building is damaged by a stOlm, (would you) include all damages covered by insurance, even though not caused by stoml?” “Yes,” said half of the seniors vs. one-quarter (26 percent) of the grown-ups. THE ‘lICE Of SUCCESS “Success can be defined in so many ways. Right now people ask, how high is your how lIlany people work for you, how high is your salaryl When you get into that kind of yuppie version of success, you’re gains to sacrifice things along Ihe w .. y. There’s not enough commitment to the ground rules of civic virtue. The yuppie is the constituency that makes it okay. They’re the people who appl.lud success, who allow an Ivan Boesky to say, ‘Greed is good: and not be hooled down from the stage. They’re the people who wrile book5 on how to win by intimidation and who can get on every TV show to teach people how to do that. Of course, this yuppie mentality is not really people, iI’s an approach. Ihe philosophy ui me.lsurlllg our lives by whal we get, what we acquire, who we know. .I very shallow kind of life. People find that out in time_ But during III<‘ !,eliClt! when thdl philU’o”phy flourishes, we SiluifiLe a lot.” ··-MllI.,u·’ CUltl 160 THE DAY AMlRlCA TOLD THE nUTH “\buld you cheat on a highly important business certification test?” “Yes.” said more than one-third (36 percent) of the seniors VS. 14 percent of the adults. More than twice as many &enion said they thought lhal it was ethical to accept gillS-of $500 cab. ur it vacation. ur a Chri&tnliUi “resent wurth $100 “‘. uwre–trwn a DUwIh:r with Wbuul tbey were doing bUliineslt. than twice ilti lIlany (44 percell’ of the aenion Vii. 21 percent of lbe ildultlt) did ,hal Ultly wuu1d “’11. a d’* if tbe1r brother·ju·loaw hili an lnIidc: Up that h_CUlUIJiAIlY iii beulK add. TIler., is no Woly you can gel caughl buying and iid.bng lbe IliWCk tOr a taandaiome prOOl. .. t.bIt oa’the &t:lliorli {59 percenl) Iiilid lilat they would “cunsider making a dt=al thal Is Ixmt.:diue ilh:pl bUl Iit4Uld to lUake $10 million. and puniaillilltlut hi waly lliix muntlhi’ probation.” Half ilti IIWIY adult.. (24 percent) agreed. What we to.Dike of all thili? 1aken ill face vll1ue. il telb us that when thetie YOUII” people are running the show. tbey will probolbly speud tlteir lim&: gambling Wilh other peuple·s money whde Ule American economy ..tides t”urthtlr down and we haw to to GennallY or .);lpan to find a moullelriip lhill works. IVrlunately. there’lt IiUWe widellce UlOtt lhUi is not the liltit wurd, wen on how Lbutie IiiUDC tlC1Uorit will bt:tlOtYe when lhey are in the ,·eat buatUlcltlt world. They’re not Iht:Hl yea, IiO what lhey liay loday Ui biltied nol on expt!l1ence but 011 lIlt:ltloagtlD dley gel hum our currtlUI leadeni illld cultun:. ———— ————– —————— 24 ———–==-========—- = – —————— – ———— The End of the Hometown in America: The End of Community Somewhere in America’s past, there is this wonderful, neiU’ly perfect :;malllUWIl. W!’ve it piclured in the ftlms of Frank Capra. in abe paintinp of Nurmau Rockwell. \l’w: heard about it in Ol&Iuhutlu.d and ew:n in Bruce Spriuglilccn’s sungli. lu lhat lOWll, everybody knows their neighbors. ‘hn Sawyer-style misc.:hief iii aLout as dOtie alii the town IMtf’ IelS lu real criDlt:. 1 .. lime of everyone in, IiO no one in luwn ja reaUy alone. That lOWIl walt lhe AmW’icau idt:a1 cunulJullily. It hi a1su dream now. arc very ,ew. If ilny. hometowns 1e1 anynMN’e. More important, thea’c Is 110 0″ community to be fOund anywtat:re in lhis l:uuulry. A va1″iety of lac.:ls supporllhib sudulogical change in Americallliving. 169 170 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH 171 It WHIH PICKlT
fENCES ‘” love white picket fences. I think some of this country’s greatest hours were the late 19405 and early 1950s, when there WoiS some sort of fantastic mood thilt I’Ye neYer seen again. Things seemed sotid and dean and newer, and there was oil depth of whoIeIomenes5.••• Life went to hell in a band basket after thilt. Little kids 10IIIere mooting heroin, not knowing where their mother was.” It –OiMd lynch, direaor of Twin Peaks wad Blue VeIve’ WHAT HAPPENED TO HOMETOWNS As long as people respected the life and property of others, the social and public order somehow hung together. Now Americans are losing respect for private property. Three in four of us confess to offenses against private property. take things from work (60 percent). steal a towel from a hotel or health club (50 percent). \e don’t repay loans (almOlit 25 percent). \e shoplift (29 percent). \e even steal from our spouses (9 percent), parents (21 percent), and friends (13 percent). So here is what our current average neighborhood looks like. Here’s what has probably occuned in your neighborhood in the past twelve months: • Home burglary (48 percent of us have reported a “neighborhood” burglary recently) • Car theft (35 percent) • Drug dealing (27 percent) • Murder or attempted murder (23 percent) • Rape (9 percent) Here’s what your neighbor!; are afraid of: • Being burglarized-we lock our doors (44 perct!nt) • Being raped t2.J percent) • Tht!ir cars being stolen (34 percent) • Being murdered in the vicinity of their own homes (14 percent) COMMUNITY LIVES WE DON’T GET INVOlVED ANYMORE Americans today have tittle or no sense of belonging to a community that is important to their lives. The thousands of people we interviewed averolged out their level of community involvement below three on a scale of one to ten. And other measures of our alienation from community include: • 1Wo-thirds of us haw never giYeJl any time at all to community activities or to the solving of community problems. Not surprisingly, more than two-thirds of us cannot name our local representative in Congress. • More than half believe that they haw no influence on the decisions made by local government • One-fourth admitted that they don’t really give a damn about any of their neighborhood’s problems. CHARITY BECINS M HOME \e are not a charitable people right now. The average American gives conSiderably less than 1 percent of his or her income to charity. Nearly one-third of all Americans have neYer given money to any charitable cause! il BY REGION: WHERE CHARITABlE DONATIONS AlE MADE (For a map of America’s re&iotts, see Put I.) GIVEN MONEY TO ACHAItITABlE ORGANIZATION (National Ave,.: il Resion l’etcen,.,. Who DonaIe ‘0 ChMiry R.,;ott Who aon.te 10 CIMmy New Soulh 75% Rust Belt New Enlland 75 Marlboro Country 62 Grarw,), 71 L.A.-Mex 62 Metropoiis 70 Pac Rim 57 • OldObde 69 As you travel the country. though, there is a signiftcant difference, rcgiull to rcKWIl, in our wiUingness to giw. Charitable fund-raisers’ best in the New South and New England, poorest in the Pac Rim and L.A.-Mex. 172 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH WHO ARE THE PEOPLE NEXT DOORI don’t know our neighbors, either. The great majority of Americans (72 percent) openly admit that they don’t know the people next door: • Have neYer spent an evening with them (45 percent) • Have never borrowed the proverbial cup of sugar, or anything else (42 percent) , • Have never been irnJide their homes (27 percent) • Don’t even know the names of the people who live next door (15 pen:ent) lit I WHO’ll CAlE fOR THE UDlILYI Inside our communities, how ..oout the elderlyl We uked our respondents, “Who!ie responsibility is it 10 cilre for the elderlyl” Their heilrtfell respon!ies: Whose Responsibility I’elt’enl4lfe lit The children Government 54% 21 The elderly them!ielves 20 Chilrililble organizations 3 We asked people if they thought lhilt lheir children would take care of them in lheir old ale. Forty-six percent 01 tho!ie asked Silid ·’No.” lit 25 America’s Real Crime Statistics America’s official statistics on crime are somewhat misleading. According to our research crime is underestimated by about 600 percent Thirty-nine percent of the people in America have some kind of criminal offense in their past, and a sizable number seem to actually draw the lighUling of violence on themselves. Crimes of violence were confessed by enough of OUI respondents to persuade us that the proportion of our population prone to violence is much higher than any national statistics released to this point In this land of violence. it came as no great surprise that only a minority of us (32 percent) feel very safe in our neighborhoods.. The rest conless that “we live with continual fear … Our fears are grounded in the facts of our daily lives, the real crime statistics that come from our own experience. More than half of all Americans (60 percent) have been the victims of crime at It:ast once in their lives. Of those, more tl&an half(58 percent) ItULJt: been victimized twice or moTe. The statistics uf violence in our poorer neighborhoods are familiar fare 171 174 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH • OffICIAL STAIISTICS UNDERESTIMATE CliME BY fIOO PERCENT COMW&ISON OF OUR CRIME STATISTICS WITH OffiCIAL CRIME STATISTICS The dimensions of the crime problem in Ameria are very big indeed. According to tbe U.S. Bureau of Crime SUtistics, there were 20 million personal crlmei (that • is, crimes against individual Americans) in 19118 alone. This means that in 19811, there were 100 personal crimes for every 1,000 Americans I As as these fi&ures may seem, they underestimate the relll crime threat to most Americans. Crime sLltistics are calculated on a yearly basis, meaning that the official sutistics only report tbe chances that an individual American was victimized in one given year. • We decided to take ,) different approach, asking Americans if they ever been the victims of a criRie. We were liure that the number would be much hi8her Ihan the official single-year averages, but we were unprep.ired for the revelation that fully 60 percent or 600 in every 1,000 adult Americans have been the victim of at least one crime. • Thil> figure is six times greater than the single-year official estimates. We further found that 350 in every 1,000 Americans have been the victims of at lea.t two crimel> I].S times the sinllle-year estimate) and that 200 Americans in every 1,000 have been the victims of at least three crimes. For the record, the 100-in-1,000 otficial crime-victimization rate corresponds almost exactly to our eslimate of the number of Americans who have been the victims of four or more uimes in their lives. in our newspapers. What surpris(:d us is the expt:rience of crime reported by who Uvc in America’s upper-middle-class and rich neighborhoods: III our Heverly Hills-South Bronx study, for example, we found that the people uf Beverly Hills are almost as likely (53 percent vs. 55 perccnl) to have been victims of crime as the people of the South Bronx; the pt:OiJlc of l1t!Verly Hills arc almost as likely (12 pert”ent vs. 14 pen:elll) to have experienced a crime of violence themselves. People in Beverly Ilills are also more likely (50 percent vs. 48 percent) to know someone who has bt..’Cn struck by violtmce. TKUE CONFESSIONS Of CRIME AU kinds of peuple conJessed small-scale crimes ill the privacy of our intervIew:. : • A ball).. leUt!r li’OIIl J1clrupulis: “Lots oj’ pelly theft whcn I was a leenager. Now I wurk iu a bank, right. .. COMMUNITY LIVES 175 • A Rust Belt lawyer: “Drugs and theft right up to the present time. I sometimes steal at our office … • A Southern cop: “I’ve stolen many items. Little here, little there.” • A receptionist from a rural area in the Northeast: “When I was younger, I stole from department stores. I occasionally hit the malls now.” • A high-school coach from the East: “. stole a leather jacket last year. Every couple of years, I steal something big.” • A young woman from New England, who is a fitness instructor: “Attempted larceny. Also, stealing gasoline from
cars in the neigh- ‘borhood.” • A meat cutter from the Midwest: “Dope-stealing from work… • A Midwestern woman, who owns a manicuring business: “Stealing in stores and buying drugs.” • A Midwestern woman, who now is president of a small company: “Stole paper goods, pens, smaD machines from a fonner employer.” • A broker for the federal government: “As a teen, working in a camera shop, I stole a lot of equipment.” • An Old Dixie factory foreman: “I steal packs of cigarettes off our lunch wagon.” • A realtor from the Coast: “Smoked marijuana and committed petty theft in convenience stores.” • A mother of two from the Rust Belt: “Stole cosmetics at a Mary Kay show.” … MAMA TRIED ” ‘This is the nineties, man. We’re the type of people who don’t uke no for an ansWt!r. It your mom says no to a kid in the nineties, the kid’s just going to laugh’-,) twenty-one-ye..r-old surfer called Road Dog, who said his family owned a chain of pharmacies. “He and his friends shouted in appreciation as another gang member lifted his … long hair to reveal a tattoo on a bare shoulder: ‘Mama Tried: .. -Nt:w rOTA Times, April 10, 1’J’JO Other:; (;onte:;sing to regular stealing: a college pl’ellident, a telephone illterviewer, a licensed practical nurse, au auto mechanic, an insurance salcsman, a market-research interviewer, a waitress, the owner of an IIISllrilllCC agellcy, a postal supervisur, a filmmaker, a mailman, a carpet illsla.ller, a llIarkt:l consultant, a home health aide. 176 177 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH More serious cJime is committed by a disturbingly large number of people we talked to. Fully 2 percent of our nationally projectable sample admit to having pushed drugs; another 1 percent each to robbery, car theft, and assault. That’s a lot of people acrotiS this country who have been involved in felonies. • THE PERENNIAL VICTIM One American in ten has suffered four or more crimes in his or her lifetime. decided to take a closer look at perennial victims. Why do some peovle seem to walk under a raineloud? TIleY au! not people whose circumstances make them more vulnerable than most. Something else is going on, something that has to do with who they are as human beings. That’s the conclusion we were led to when we discovered who the perennial victims are not: • They are not more than averagely poor or uneducated or members of minorities. • They are not mostly women (60 percent are men). • They are not mostly old (only 6 percent are sixty years old or older). In tact, the greatest proportion of perennial victims shows up in the age group where you might least expect to ftnd them: men between thirty-ftve and forty-four. NOlle of that ftts with the standard perception about where crime hits hardest ill America. Who are these perennial crime victims then? • ‘(bey’re more than twice as likely to have committed a crime themItd\!s. Fifty-nine percent admit to having committed at least one crime. • The) ‘re more than twice as likely (51 percent vs. 20 percent) to have contemplated suidde. AlmoslllCAlf have been in therapy. Most illterestingly, perennial crime victims are often victims of child abuse. They are three times as likely to have been beaten and lour Hurel) as likely to have been sexuaUy abused al) children. COMMUNITY LIVES WHAT AMERICA REALLY BELIEVES ABOUT THE DEATH PENALTY Americans kill each other at a far higher rate (currently, more than 25,000 homicides reported each year) than do the citizens of any other industrial country. Maybe it is natural that sentiment for the death penalty, abolished throughout \estern Europe, is making a comeback in” the United States. TIle number of prisoners on death row rises each year, and public support for the death penalty is increasing. Here’s what people be1ieve right now about the death penalty: \e found that two-thirds of our respondents (68 percent) favor legal execution. A number of Americans go beyond that in their desire for legal vengeance, or some kind ofjustice. When it comes to specific offenses, Americans’ support for the death penalty comes close to 100 percent. Crimes against children-even when they do not involve murder-are those for which the largest number advocate death. It SELLING TRADE SECRETS 10 J.U’ANI AMERICANS NOW SAY, “HANG ‘EM HIGH.” Nearly as many (41 percent) Americans now consider seKing trade secrets to Japan a form of treason as worthy of execution as selling milita/)’ secrets to the Soviets (49 percent). It AMERICANS SUPPOIT Ttl( DEATH PEN4lTY OVEIWHBMINQY Offense Suppoltin, &ecution It Ran a child-prostitution ring Sold drugs to children killed an innocent child Engaged in senseless mass-murder Killed a policeman 97′” 95 83 82 78 It Was a terrorist who planted a bomb on an airplane Put poison in over-the-counter drugs Killed a litorekeeper in a robbe/)’ Killed while driving drunk Raped a woman Sold milita/)’ secrets to the Soviets Sold trilde seuets to the J.. 75 74 73 70 59 49 41 THE UAY AMERICA TOll> THE TRUTH 178 Mauy Americans bt:youd bimplc advocaq in lheir lliupport of the dealh pellah y. DUI! pt:I’:.un in tOOl’ wants a return to public executions. allhough tltis lime hi lhe modem lllatUlt:r-on tdcvitdou. Ouc-llulJ uf tlle pt.-oplc we hlJU&”C to would like to an cXt.’t:ulion lhclIIl>Ch,c:., .. ulh J,l vcrccill \”uul’] “ull the bwildl TIwliC wluul”,’Cr arc Illt:U and WOIllCU 1″1’0111 Ihe whole tipL’:lrulll ol” American IUe, . A It.alllpllllg of lhe men “sduLicb a lluwc:r-lihop OWllel’ in hili carty lhilliclIt; it Ihl””’C-liIllCblU.u·l1cd l>’.:hu,,1,,,,..,; a poIilaJ a;upcrvilior ill hili eatl) luuic:.; a IlLAckal’ IJl.aUl bUIJl..’i””u;or; an i.utUriUK:e executivc; sewral nlt.’.ll’-.d docWfti; a “,’olcltlJonal mudd; and iawYCni frum San ……0111′-11>’,;0, W.llihiugIOU••.ua.] Mis:.ibSippi. lhe \oultJ-lA: CJ”,ocutioucn. arc two legal tlet:rclaneli; lhe UI .. of .. piu.a lJ””lur; dU’-lulli. l.awycl’Ii, aud pliycbulogililti. 29 Religion: Who Really Believes in God Today? Whal is going on in congregations, parishes, and synagogues across America? The news is good-and bad. God is alive and very well. But right now in America, fewer people are listening to what God has to say than ever before. Ninety percent of tire people we questioned said that they truJy believe in God. It would be the logical conclusion then to think that God is a meaningful factor in ttxlay’s America. Hut we reached a difterent t’Ooclusion when we dug deeper with our questions. In every liingle region of the country, when we asked how people make up their minds on issues of right and wrong, we found that they simply du not turn 10 God or religion to help them decide about the seminal or JlIorai issuCb of the day. }l busing fe.aburning deith peOilty Book binning Communiilll 70% 66 64 64 64 66% bl 57 62 flO Attirmilive wion 61 69 ill Birth control Abortion 58 56 40 52 Humosexuality le.tChing Creitioniilll in schools Pornography PrelNria.1 sex 55 55 54 53 52 52 41 43 Anli-St!mitiilll 53 56 .. I Women in the dergy lYcism 52 … 47 43 PrIfer in schools 44 35 Divorce 43 37 NIKht In die 43 57 GOO AND OTHER HEROES W:! have established ourselves as the authority on morality. Vk now choose which Commandments to believe and which ones not to believe. Clearly, the God of the 1990& in America is a distant and pale reflection of the God of our forefathers. ‘This is not the “jealous God” of the Old 1estament-six in seven people think that it is okay not to believe in God. Rather, Americans seem to use God to refer to a general principle of good in sometimes, He (or She) is the creator who set off the Big Bang but doesn’t intervene in human affairs. FOr most Americans, God is not to be feared or, for that matter, loved. WHO IS RELIGIOUS IN AMERlCAl There are those who do call truly religious, and some people may be surprised at the demographics. Ninety-nine percent are under the age of 65. One in four is a college graduate, and two in three haw had some college. They are more often women. And that fact supports our findings that in this country, women are more moral than men, and religious people are more moral than the national average. REL
IGIOUS PEOPLE ARE MORE MORAL Ilow does the growing number of nonreligioUS Americans compare to those who still hold to traditional beliefs? Can a judgment be made about who’s more moral? People deS(;ribing themselves as “very religious” (14 percent) definitely make better citizens. In the self-portraits they painted for us, the very reUgious scored much higher than did other people on moral questions that most of Ult would accept as defining citizenship in a civilized society. ReUgious people are far less likely to “have a price.” The nonreligious were those 17 percent who defined themselves as being “not religious at all. .. It I WHAT WOULD YOU 00 fOR $10 MILLION’ l’ercenu,e of l’ercenr.,e of ReIi,iow Non«tii,ious WuuldYuu … People Who Af- People Who “‘,.. Abindon your 17% 37% * I Leave your spousel 8ecome iI prc»titule fori weeki 11 16 26 18 202 THE DAY AMERICA TOlD THE TRUTH Religious Americans are more willing to die for what they believe. They’re less prone to do something that they know is immoral because others are doing it They are much more sure of their own moral worth. Three limes as many among the religious described themselves as “very good” people. TIrey are also more at peace with themselves. Religious people are more likely to say they are satisfied with their lives (50 percent vs. 36 percent). Rt:ligious people are much less likely to have used drugs (27 percent vs. 58 percent). They are more truthful. Tlrey are more commiued to the family. They make better workers, and they are less prone to petty crime. The religious are also less likely (9 percent vs. 21 percent) to carry Viedpons. SIN, AMERICAN STYLE If religion duesn’t give us satisfactory answers, does that mean we believe lhat there are no rules of morality-that anything goes? Not entirely. Americans still have a lively sense of what sin means. And if there is om: that underlies our definition of sin, it is the oldest, most universal principle of them all-the Golden Rule. Sin, as most of us sec itloday, i6 doiug unto other6 wha1 we don’t want done unto ourselves. GOOD PEOPlE • • Jewish people (41 percent) .are the most likely to describe .as very good vs. 30 percent 01 C.atholics .and 27 percent of ProtHt.ants . • BI.acks (34 percent) ire more likely to describe theml>elves very good .are whites (28 percent•. • The elderly, those iied 65 ind over (35 percent), more 18- to 24-yeirolds (25 percenU. • College-edut:ited (35 percent) more less-educited people Ill. per· cent) . .. • HOnlOseXUOils Oind bisexuals (30 perteRt) more (27 percent). • COllservollives (Jj pen en!) mUle thin liberolls Cl7 peruml). GOD AND OTHER HEROES 203 *’ IY REGION: WHERE _LiMas LIVE (for .a m.ap of America’s resiGns, see Put t.) BELIEVE IN GOO (N.ationalA’erige: cm.) It.,ion Who llelieve IfeBion ::: * Old Dixie 96% New South Gr.anary 92 90% Metropolis L.A.-Mex 91 87 Mirlboro Country Rust Belt 91 82 Pic Rim New England 90 81 Fewer than two people in five believe that Bin is “going against God’s will” or “going against the Bible” or “violating the ‘Jen Commandments.” FOr the rest of us, sin is defined by our own consciences. W! define what is Sinful and what isn’t The Worst Sin I’ve Ever Committed Here are examples of what Americans we interviewed remember as the worst sins in their lives: • “Killed other humans in war.”-a post office clerk from the Ykst Coast, {ortie!>, Baptist, not a churchgoer. • “Got into a 6s16gbt with my father. I knocked my father down tWke.”-a truck driver from Old Owe. • “J !>hot two people once and almost killed them.”-a man in his thirties from Old Dixie. • “I lit my mother. “-a single man in his late twenties. • “Allowed JOnuer spouse to physically abuse me without seeking help. “-an Hispanic secretary in his early twenties. • “I once (;onVinced a rich person to invest money in my company and we used it fOl’ liVing.”-a real estate agent from the Southwest • “Stealing over $500 worth of material from the hospital that I didn’t really need. “-a registered nurse from the Midwest • “Slealillg from my un<.:le, and I am very sorry. “-a bank teDer from (he Northeast. • “Selling drugtl to higb-school kids. “-a singJe man froID New Englantl, in his early twenties . • ‘”Beillg jcaJOUIi of lilY next-door neighbor’s new car. “-a housewife, ill her carJy lillic!>, churchgoing Catholic. — — — 204 205 THE DAY AMERICA TOLD THE TRUTH • “Playing sexually with little girls.”-a single man in his late thirties. • “Having a child out of wedlock.”-a sixty-ftve-year-old woman from the New South. • “The most serious sin I have committed is not being able to quit drinking and writing bad checks.”-a single man, in his late thirties, Lutheran. • “I had an abortipn when I was a very young girl.”-a thirty-year-old woman, now divorced and unemployed. • “Five abortions.”-a woman in her late thirties, churchgoer from the South. • “Stealing and, though not controllable by me, sex with my brothers.”-a saleswoman, jewish, attends services regularly. • ‘1ied to commit the ultimate sin, suicide.”-a disk jockey from the Midwest, single man, Catholic, doesn’t attend church regularly. • “Attempted suicide. “-a divorced man in his thirties from New England, Baptist, not a churchgoer. • “Euthanasia. I helped my to die.”–a secretary from the Northeast, in her graduated from parochial school, attends l:hurch irregularly. • “Being bom.”-a rew’ed man from the Northwest, nonreligious. 00 AMEILICANS STILL BELIEVE IN HELU An afterlife in heD is not something very many Americans honestly fear. Moltt (62 pc!occnl) profess to believe in an afterlife that includes both heaven and heD (55 percent of us believe in thc existence ot’Satan). \e are confident, that our future prospects are bright. Almost haU’ of us (46 perceJll) expect to spend eternity in heavcn Vii. only 4 per:cnt who see their future in hell. In this respect, we have not lost the optimism for which we are famous. OTHER POWERS In addition to God in his heaven and Satan in his hell, these are beliefs that wme of us hoW: • rurty-five pt!n:ent of all Amel’icans believe that ghosts exist. • Almost one III three (31 pen:ent) believe that pt.-ople have lIlagit:i11 puwers, • Aboul unt::-lourth ot’ bclil!Vc in witchcraft t2H pcrl:CUI), lJIa<.:k magk (24 pelunt). and voodoo (20 percent), GOD AND OTHER HEROES • And as many as one in twenty Americans have actually participated in some ritual of satanism or witchcraft I PlOTESTANIS, CATHOlICS, OR JEWS: WHO’S MOU IflKiIOUSI StMemenI Believe in God If believe: Very sure of God’s existence Believe God created the universe Believe there is tl Hell Believe there is tl HeiWen Not at a” religious Went to churchlsynagogue often when 8fOWIng up Go 10 churchisyniSOKue often now Less ahan 20 percent of life influenced by religious beliefs Churchfsyn4lgogue had no inRuence on moral development • I SIN: AS AMERICANS HONESnV SEE IT ciefine “sin” as tollows; Definition Going against God’s wi” • Any immoral act Willful wronpng Ii, people in Old Dixie and in New England still helic-! ill tK:roes, but even there, less than half are now belie’el”s. In the Belt, il’l> only one jll five. The! whole idea of heroes has gotten fuzzy for us. Sometimes it dCKcueratel> iuto TV celebrity. The late historian Barbar.l Tuchman rCl·aUt:d attending a conterence on heroes, held on Supennan’s fiftieth lJiJ’lhday. She commented: ··It was quite weird. what they considered a hero. The real hero of the discusl>iun was the liule girl who’d fallen down a well. Sbe didn’t do anything to make hertielf a was just in the news. Other heroes discussed wert: Elvis Presley and somelxxly whom I had never heard of. the JIa)’Hower Madam.” Nor do we have people in public We we can look up to. OnJyone-third (II liS thillk that the President has any right to tell us right or aud far lewel’ wuuld accept his advice without question. 207 208 209 THE DAY AMElICA TOLD THE TlUTH iI AMUICA IN THf P051-HEa0lC Aa: WHAIIT AU. MfANS In the Late 1930s the 1940s, Joe DlMagio represented an American idNI. He was the man of deeds rather than of
words, whole quiet IeoIdership IJYde him the embodiment of the American hero. Indeed, Ernesl Heminpav OiMagio in mind when he defined heroism as “srate under pressure.” In The Old Man iIId iI the .se.. the old man cites Joe DiMagIo as proof that heroes really do exist and that man contains within him an unconquerable heroic spark. It 15 easy to identify other American heroes from the put: ChMIel lindbergh, “the lone EqIe”i &be Ruth, “the Sultan of Sw.a”; Joe louis, “the Brown Bomber,” who demolished Adolf Hiller’. claims of Aryan racial superiority by fLatteninl the German “Superman,” Max Schmelins. In the movies, John Wayne speciMlzed in Playinl American heroes. iI Seventy percent of Americans now say that America has no more heroes. Why are there no heroes todayl There are no heroes bec.luse we haw ceased to believe in anything stronlly enough to be impressed by its attainment. • Who really cares how RYny millions of our athletes will eilrnl • Who really cares how many comic-strip viH;&ins will let mutilated and iI , massacred by our movie heroesl • Michael Milken and his $bOO mifllon a year salary Is to Horatio Aller as today’s MiIdonna is to the historical Madonna-. parody. An anecdote told by a university president makes the point about our loss of beliefin our leaders: In the fall of 1987, he was teaching a Sunday school clatis for adults that included hanken, business executives, and university professors. He asked them a question based on a then-recent event: “\e hear on the news that an Iranian ship has been sunk in the Persian Gulf. The Jr.wian guvemment says that it was sunk by American _ I IY IfGlON: WHO IItUfVESIN AMERICAN HElOn (for illNp of America’s regions, see Part I.) BELIEVE THAT AMERICA STil L HAS HEROES (National Averaae: 30%) h””enYBe ite,ion Wh0″Bree Re,ioo -I Old Dixie 43% Marlboro Country New England 42 Metropolis PKRim 3CJ L.A.-Mex 34 Rust Bdt New South 31 Perulm”lle Whu”Bree 31% 31 29 10 GOD AND OTHER HEROES torpedoes. The u.s. government says that the ship hit Iranian mines. Whom do you believe?” The class was sllent. No one answered. ENeryone wanted more information before deciding what they thought had happened. Not one person in that class trusted their own government to tell the truth. They had as much trust in the government ofIran. ill MOlAl AlJTtIOIITIES: SOURCES THAT WE WIU AllOW 10 TELL US WHAT IS liGHT AND WRONG SoutCe ., Spouse/lover Parent Grandparent Best friend Bible Religion Personal doctor ill Child Local police ChurchlsYOilgoSue Government Personal lawyer ., U.S. Supreme Court Uncle/aunt Schoofteacher Adult friend College professor Boss President of the United States .1 Book Co-worker Local politician lY minister The press filmous athlete ., Neighbor TV personality FictionallY character Movie slar Who I’etnn”.. 01 People s.y SocMce 11M Who Accept SouIce’s Some IIiIht to Tell Them MQnI AdvIce Without What’s IfiIhtiN w.w” Question 77″, 55″, n 46 58 37 57 37 52 37 52 34 51 37 50 31 50 33 …. 2S 42 2S 43 29 42 2S 42 2S 39 23 39 22 37 20 36 23 32 19 28 11 24 12 22 6 21 7 21 6 21 7 19 8 19 7 19 5 19 6 I I I I ! I i ! I 210 THI DAY AMIIICA TOLD THI nUTH IF NOT 000, HEaOES, OIl OUIINSTITUTIONS, THlN WHOM DOWETIUSTJ 10 whom. or to wbich institution do ID08I of us tum for moral and elIuwd When we du tum to someone fur help ill the 1990s. who is it? Our church? . Our penunent? Out’ IICbooIa? Our p.arenUi? .. Then: a clear ople. Alii 1U00al autlwritit.:b ill lhc.:ir livelli, Aallcricauli “i&Wd Iht: IJrt:1iIIi al 6 pclcenl. ‘I’bat’lii on a pal’ willA movie lilarli, aud I percent below famouli atlilclelli and telC’lUOOU 1lt!lliOucilitielt. 11 uut)’ 1 1Jc.:1’I.:eut LcUel’ t”.tll IciL-vhJion cbaraclcrlli. 236 237 fiFTY-fOUl REVELATIONS than 600 percent. The amount of actual crime in this country is staggerSixty percent of us have been victims of a major crime. S. The 1990s will be marked by very personalized Moral Crusades. Many of us ache to do the right thing, but we feel that there are no sane outlets through our institutions. The first Crusade-environmentalismis actually happening and this time, we are serious about it. The next Mu-ai Crusade could be in the area of education. That’s where it should be. Ulunteerism is going to happen in a bi

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