Point blank: bullshit. Interesting theory that lacks substance. The downfall of Western civilization didn’t begin or reach its apogee because of “Friends.” You are mistaking cause and effect. The effect of the collapse is obvious from the success of “Friends” and other television programs that held a wide variety of groups up to ridicule. The cause, however, has more to do with the destruction of the American educational system, and with the concentration of our collective attention on the mindless pablum of mass produced entertainment. The programs in question thrived during the end of the television era, when mass media could reach huge audiences. Since then, the growth of cable and internet systems has greatly diffused and fractionalized the mass audience into a large number of smaller audiences. The saturation of mass media with disrespectful archetypes combined with the diffusion of our collective attention across an ever-increasing array of information services is the actual cause of the breakdown in Western civilization.

Alan is a poet, journalist, short story writer, editor, website developer, and political activist. He is the executive editor of BindleSnitch.com.