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Affluenza: An American Epidemic Essay

959 words - 4 pages

Affluenza is an epidemic which effects millions of people in the United States."Until this century [20th], to consume was considered a bad thing" says Jeremy Rifkin an expert on affluenza ( Gross ). The victims of affluenza are consumers who work long hours at a job they hate so they can buy things which they don't need ( Fight Club ). Like AIDS, affluenza has spread quickly throughout the United States showing no prejudice of race, sex or color. However, unlike AIDS, affluenza is a compulsive addiction to shopping, which can be cured by spending less time consuming and more time enjoying life. As the majority of parents work longer hours then other parents did in the past to ...view middle of the document...

Teenagers optimistically look forward to their adult years with ambitious dreams.To their surprise, the dreams of being rich and famous which were offered to them on every commercial break come crashing down as they become adults. If the gap between the rich and the poor continues to increase, future generations will only be able to look forward to poverty. The average employer in the United States now makes about 326 times more then the average employee. ( "The Affluenza' Epidemic" ). Working a repetitive job, credit debit and unhappiness are some of the other social problems many teenagers will unknowingly have deal with as they enter the workforce.As these teenagers grow into adults and have children of their own, they too will raise their children with the help of television as their parents did. They will be led to believe that they are helping their family relationship by staying at work later and spend less time at home. The effects of affluenza on our environment are also extremely horrifying. As a Cote Page 3 nation of consumers we neglect our environment, and believe that our natural resources are inexhaustible. Roughly fifty percent of youth in the United States would rather go shopping then enjoy a hike in the woods ( Willis ). According to Allan Gerald "Our annual generation of total waste...would fill a convoy of garbage trucks half way to the moon" ( "A Bad Case Of "˜Affluenza'" ). Endangered species and global warming does not concern people who are infected with affluenza. What concerns people who are infected with affluenza are celebrity magazines and cable television ( Fight Club ). Many people have found that volunteering to...

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