Thursday, 25 October 2012

Loss of an Icon...

Few days ago, in a forum of old colleagues and friends, we were discussing the problem of neoteric generation's quest for identity. The older generations sought refuge in the freedom fighters, social reformers and industrialists of pre and post independent India. The heroes of that time were public figures having unparalleled account of sacrifices and struggle to bring about change in the society at large. Abjection of slavery, poverty and general despondency prevalent among masses gave an impenetrable halo to these personalities and people refused to look beyond the radiance of their glory, their personal records stood immaculate. But the tide of times has robbed some of them, much of that glory. We are now independent, stable and fairly confident (though struggling) society. So the many old ideals and values do not apply. Gen X is well fed, well read and well travelled, brimming with zest for more. They have all the information they need (or don’t need) and can very well see through the outer glossy sheath shrouding public personalities and celebrities.

So where are the icons today, who should youngsters look up to?? All successful personalities and so called celebrities come with their own murky trails. Recent revelation of Lance Armstrong’s ‘epic downfall’ and subsequent stripping him off his titles and endorsements left me flabbergasted. He was not mere a sports star. His survival from a deathly disease and then winning ‘Tour de France’, considered the toughest sports event, seven times over, catapulted him to the status of demigod. His autobiography "It's Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life", was a bestseller and gave hopes to millions fighting the cancer. But the fame, respect and wealth he amassed fled him faster than it got him. Very reminiscent of muddy saga of Tiger Woods. The phenomenon is not restricted to sports only…you pick any sphere, once someone reaches the dizzy heights of fame and adulation, it becomes very difficult to contain and maintain that position leading to a downfall swifter than the ascent.  With the dearth of real life heroes, all the youngsters are left with is the make believe world of cinema where an imaginary hero is metaphor of all the ideals relevant to their aims and aspirations. If that hero is shown doing unspeakable things like hurling filthiest abuses, smoking, drinking or resorting to violence, what can we expect from them?

In such scenario, who should the younger generation emulate? The old ones who they cannot relate to or present ones who are not worthy enough. Many would say, parents should become the role model for their kids, but honestly, it is easier said than done! 

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  1. Valid questions. Tough call indeed!

    1. yeah, but have to find answers...thanks for visiting

  2. This article raised a very valid question.Finding answer to this question is very important for the better future.