The recent allegations of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s past sexual misconduct has most certainly “sexed-up” his bid to run for election in California. The broadcast of these revelations appears more to do with raising TV ratings for the various chat shows and increase the sale of the tabloid press, rather then to embark upon a genuine discourse on the moral dimension of his sexual misconduct. In addition it might also encourage the despondent voters to take more of an active role in the political process. Declining participation in the political process is one of the growing trends of most advanced democratic societies, as the masses are beginning to realise that governments respond to big business rather then to the needs of the ordinary citizens.
This issue raises the classical question of individual versus the society; the societies expectation for individuals to abide by certain code of ethics versus the right of the individuals under the notion of “freedom” to decide the exact nature of the ethics. First point to highlight is that far more numerous and serious sexual crimes that are pervasive, are not receiving the same level of attention by the media that they deserve. Which immediately raises doubts on the motivation for raising the issue of Arnold’s past sexual misconduct. What is more stark is the fact that somehow the American societies expectation of a higher level of ethical behaviour towards the opposite sex then what has been shown by Arnold, which is a very mild case when compared to the likes of Monica and Clinton as an example. Furthermore, the expectation for such behaviour is more of a by-product o! f the recent craze to achieve gender “equality” rather then a belief in certain ethics, since in the vast majority of the cases it is the male species that initiates the hunt resulting in sexual harassment. It is doubtful that the male in general would ever complain of sexual harassment, unless of course he genuinely despised the female hunter for some reason.
Coming back to the issue of the individual versus society. The influence of society is no doubt far more dominant in shaping and influencing the behaviour of the individual then the code of ethics that may be upheld by the respected individual. Fashion, Music and Film industries are the trendsetters, influences the young and the old through the power of mass media and consumer culture. Liberal democracy along with the popular culture is constantly pushing the boundaries of freedom in the realms of sexual activity, thus agitating the sexual instinct constantly.
An example of this agitation is the revealing clothes (particularly for females) that are constantly deployed by the fashion, film and the music industry as trends setters, which are often justified under the pretext of expressing individual freedom rather then honestly admitting that it’s purpose is of enticing the opposite sex. The same trendsetters glorify the acquisition of multiple female partners as a sign of manhood, and every teenager to adult aspires to what they say “score”. Arnie is simply a product of such a climate as he went about womanising. Take the recent chart hit from the two Rumanian sisters, “Cheeky girls and cheeky boys”, where the lyric goes on to state “don’t be shy come and touch my bum”, is exactly what perhaps Arnold did. As a consequence of this notion of “freedom”, American society is exhibiting its promiscuous nature, rampant sexual debauchery, and she is one of the largest producers and consumers of pornography. Promiscuity has reached epidemic proportion whereby the notions of marriage vows, adultery and fornication have been rendered meaningless. Under such circumstances how does such a society expect individual to exercise restraint unilaterally to the isolation of everything else, a behaviour that more appropriately be expected from lets say the Islamic “fundamentalists”.
A good analogy is perhaps expecting the masses not to consume drugs whilst making it available and fashionable by the society around the individual! Hence this self-righteous criticism of Arnold’s past conduct illustrates hypocrisy and naivetÃ©, for which many around the world has labelled America as an “immature nation”. Evidences of immaturity, confusion and naivetÃ© can be found by a cursory glance at the numerous laughable and at time moronic chat shows, Jerry Springer being the most prominent.