By Bo Rhodes
There are members of our society who look down on others based solely on the music they listen to, the movies they see or the clothes they wear. These people sneer at the boy-and-girl bands commonly heard on mainstream radio. They scoff at the masses standing in line to see the latest Jennifer Love Hewitt movie and spit on those that spend money on Nike or Tommy Hilfiger. These individuals are snobs. Not just any kind of snob mind you, they are pop culture snobs.
Pop culture snobs can often been heard commenting on the latest Sri Lankan-produced documentary of the travels of a pair of sandals or spewing the virtues of the eclectic sounds of Hungarian band Rotting Fetuses in Raspberry Jam (ficticious). If anything remotely popular should cross their collective paths though, beware. The pop culture snobs will cry out with wonder about the mass production of studio-produced music and how it lacks any real talent or creativity. Why would anyone adorn themselves with symbols of consumerism when there’s a secondhand store having a sale on moth-eaten T-shirts and urine-stained jeans?
The answer is really quite simple. They like to. The Backstreet-Britney-Aguilera music they listen to makes them happy. They think the $200 pair of Nikes they are wearing look and feel good. The Hollywood-distributed movie made them smile so they enjoyed it. People often do things because they like to and they should not be verbally trashed for it.
However, only a completely naive fool would shade their eyes from the reality behind pop culture. It involves mass marketing that sometimes produces a false ideal of what life should be like. It uses those who don’t, and probably never will, have the opportunity to live the lifestyle they help create. Despite this though, one should not be forced to endure the slings and arrows of those who believe that obscure and experimental is equivalent to high culture.
Pop culture provides us with an opportunity to escape the dreary toil that is daily life. The mindless distraction it delivers gives an often much-needed break. Whether it be drinking a can of Coke or giggling at the lunacy behind Aqua lyrics, pop culture is a part of all our lives. Pop culture snobs need to learn that in order to be truly faithful to their cause they would have to isolate themselves from everything–we wouldn’t want that now, would we?