The Cheating Culture - Essay Example

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The book The Cheating Culture by David Callahan came out in 2004. This book cannot be classified as a cheerful or easy piece to read as it shed light on some of the disturbing aspects and practices that are prevalent in our present society…
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The Cheating Culture
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Running head: The Cheating Culture The Cheating Culture s The Cheating Culture The book The Cheating Culture by David Callahan came out in 2004. This book cannot be classified as a cheerful or easy piece to read as it shed light on some of the disturbing aspects and practices that are prevalent in our present society. These practices mainly include dishonest practices of cheating and hoarding money especially in the business sector. These practices have weakened the real foundations of our society and are now so deeply ingrained in it that it is almost impossible to free our society of these mal practices completely. Cheating culture has infested American society completely. The author took help from various recent happenings and gave very specific examples of cheating in the society with respect to use of steroids that enhance an athlete’s performance, how reporters depict fiction as reality, how many doctors get bribed from pharmaceutical companies and accept heavy gifts from them in return for promoting their drugs irrespective of their reliability and authenticity, how students casually cheat during exams, how music fans burn CDs and upload it on the internet for others to freely download and how major stakeholders in a company conduct thefts and crime in business, he says that cheating is all around us. According to Callahan, this pervasion of cheating in the society is a result of “profound moral crisis” (Callahan, 2004, p. 17). He says that only are Americans getting more and more indulged in it, but the more dangerous aspect of it is that they have begun to feel less guilty about the crimes that they are committing. This is mainly because of the fact that cheating has become so commonplace in the American society that it has stopped affecting the conscience of people. People are doing it because everyone around them is also doing it and so they don’t feel ashamed in doing some stealthy business. The main reason that he provided for the prevalence of cheating culture concerns an emphasis in the past 25 years on preservation of a traditional society which is threatened by drugs, sex and music. However, we have failed to place an equal emphasis on preventing more grave and deep-rooted evils such as bribery, theft, greed and inequality. With the rise in globalization and freedom of Media, people have become more materialistic and an increase in education levels has led to an increase in competition among individuals in general. This has also led to job insecurity and downsizing in many companies. A lot of people feel insecure and pressurized by the material wants of themselves and their families that they forget their integral values while collecting wealth. Another argument that Callahan proposed was that cheating has led to an even greater divide between the rich and the poor. The rich people, in the lust of wealth, try to make connections with the Government regulatory authorities and bribe them to get their matters straightened, for example tax exemption. Their crimes of bribery go unnoticed. While on the other hand, the poor get caught for their insignificant actions which they commit only to cope up with the growing inequality. Also people have found very easy ways of justifying cheating. If everyone’s doing something wrong then it becomes easier to justify why you’re doing it. The book makes the reader believe that cheating indeed is not always a very choice. Life presents each individual to very complex situations where they have to make sacrifices and choose a path that seems easier. Unfortunately, many people in the American society resorts to a path that eventually leads to cheating. Therefore, cheating is not an easy option to pick. Callahan also refers to economics, sociology and political science to explain the growing cheating culture. In this section, he talks about deception and corporate frauds that have become so common today. He did not take into account the consumer psychology in this section of the book, which is major drawback of it. In all his previous chapters he has presented very painful and true arguments of fraud and deception. However, the final chapter lacks a little structure in terms of a developed thought process and evidence. This book provides food for thought for all the citizens, government organizations and agencies as they are blindly engrossed in the practice of cheating. It presents very solid arguments and examples of why and how cheating has become such a common activity for all of us that we do not even recognize that its eating up our moral values and leading to the disruption of our own society. It fails to provide solutions for this disease of cheating, but it cannot be deemed useless only because of this factor. This book is a very interesting and meaningful read but it should be read with seriousness. It narrates some very relatable and interesting stories and examples. It also relates to some very complex real world situations and how they could have been dealt with better with little changes in attitudes and perceptions. This book also gives the readers a chance to introspect and ask themselves about how many times they have cheated. It feels to call upon people to make an agenda and shun this practice, but in my opinion, an avid and a conscientious reader would look into him/herself and decide his/her own destiny about continuing this practice or not. Reference Callahan, D. (2004). The Cheating culture: why more Americans are doing wrong to get ahead. RB Large Print. Read More
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