I just got done (mercifully) doing a double-delete on a post I was writing about higher education. I was out of my depth. The post was completely derivative and based on a book I am reading called The Culture of Narcissism: American Life in An Age of Diminishing Expectations by Christopher Lasch, first published in 1979 and said to be a “national bestseller.” It is a fun book, in fact, even exciting for me is it mentions so many names, movements, perversions and attitudes that I grew up in, through and around. (Just to name one, there is the mythical female orgasm. Trust me, it doesn’t happen.)
This story caught my eye as I stood in line at the coffee shop this morning. We had just attended a ceremony for 800 graduates of York High School, Elmhurst, Illinois, among them our grandson. College tuition costs have (unreasonably) skyrocketed these past decades, and new graduates are, if fortunate enough to find employment, chained to their desks for most of their careers. Their student loans are permanent, cannot be discharged in any circumstances except perhaps death. I think the system is deliberate and abusive, a form of tyranny.
Read on for an affirmation of humanity.