Muckraker_picture.jpg


"What happened to good old-fashioned puritanical hard work?"

By Xander Rockney-Finger

What happened to the drive, the determination, the passion, and the morals? I’m not advocating wasting away in church, nor a belief in predestination or any of the rest of that rubbish. I’m not encouraging the use of the New England Primer, which read;
A is for "In Adam's fall, we sinned all,"
B is for “thy life to mend, this book attend”
D is for “A Dog will bite, a thief at night”
E is for “An eagles flight is out of sight”
F is for “The idle Fool is whipt at school.”
Rather, I am reminiscing on the integrity, the will, and the strength of character that was present in almost every puritan. Where in society today do you find people that refrain from uttering profanities or crude immature language? Where in society today do you find people who work with constant vigilance, never ceasing, never faltering, and never wavering in their path to become the best that they can be?
Profanities plague the air today just as much as smog and other pollutants. Today kids say “Sh!t!” and then attempt to correct themselves with “Oh Sh!t I just said Sh!t!” and then in utter desperation they finally correct themselves with “ahh FΩçk it!”. In society today the word ‘like’ has been replaced with FΩçk, as it is used in equally frequent quantities and in equally obnoxious ways. Puritans never had this problem, however that is probably because if someone spoke in such ways around them they would cut out their tongue, give them the death sentence, banish them, or result to some other rash extreme punishment. In addition, in today’s society, celibacy is about as extinct as the original puritans. In the bleak days of the puritans temptations were resisted, lusts were confined, and men kept it in their pants. Today, studies have shown that sex is the most prevalent idea in a young mans head. This is clearly refuted in the hungry lustful gazes that leap out of the man’s eye in order to pounce on the eye candy walking by in a short skirt and low cut tank top with all of the goodies bouncing out all over the place. Integrity and strength of character is also in a drastic downfall in today’s society as young people drink their livers to death, and smoke their lungs black and shriveled. Young people, not quite eighteen, go to small parties with a few friends, maybe with some alcohol, maybe a little bit of weed, and who knows what else. Then you come to the traditional American Wild Party, where there are a lot of drugs, a lot of alcohol, and a lot of sinning that would make puritans think they had died and gone to hell, had they been present. In all honesty, I do not think that the puritans had ever heard the word party, let alone use it. Probably the closest they every got to the word party, was for when they called for good old-fashioned bible clubs. There was no lawlessness, no lack of integrity in the puritans. There was no caving into peer pressure, for puritans had moral fibers. They had the strength to differentiate between right and wrong, the strength to then devoutly follow what they believe is right, and firmly spurn what they believe is wrong. For that I respect them immensely, even though I degrade and detest their dreary, bleak, austere, pointless, Jesus worshiping lives.
I have never heard of a people so devout to what they do other than the puritans. They brought true meaning to the word determination. Despite their religious belief of predestination, they still worked day and night to be the best people they could be. Churches would be filled with impassioned citizens so frequently that it was once observed that they had calluses on their butts from all the sitting on the hard wooden benches. Workmen dedicated themselves to their craft, people spent years of constant work in order to become masters of their craft. Today, there is no need for expert craftsmen because of industrialization, however this is no excuse for the dwindling amount of dedication to work. I do recognize however that some people do truly work as hard as they can whenever they can to become the best that they can, but in today’s society this is becoming rarer and rarer. This is due to the movie theaters, video games, and the easy modes of transportation that provide so much distraction to youth today.
Puritans had moral fiber, they had determination, and they had will power. They had the moral stature to refrain from speaking profanities every other word. They had the moral strength to resist the omnipotent temptations of sexual desires. They had the integrity to abstain from drinking, partying, and indulging themselves in whatever form of narcotics they had in their archaic time. Puritans knew what it was to work hard, to dedicate oneself to a task in order to pursue ultimate success. All of these great attributes are dwindling in society today and it is a tragic shame. People do not have the integrity, strength of mind, perseverance, and dedication that the puritans possessed. However despite these inefficiencies, I would not go back to that despondent time if I could, for the puritans where somber, austere, and boring.