rethinking rudolph

Last night my daughter and I were watching all of the classic Christmas cartoons.  We watched, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and I noticed something that I had nevernoticed before.  We all know the song and the plot of the movies follows the lyrics.  The song talks about all of the reindeer teasing poor Rudolph for his glowing nose.  Then when the downtrodden reindeer gets an invitation from Santa to be the leader of the sleigh, suddenly all of the other reindeer loved him, they even shouted out with glee.

I was thinking, this totally sounds like junior high.  All of the students think that everyone is looking at them, one minute you’re a dork, then the prank you pulled in class makes you temporarily famous.  Junior highers travel in packs, just like reindeer, they feel worthless unless someone more popular than them praises or gives status to them and physical appearance is king.

I wonder if many of us have been stuck in this mentality since junior high.  First, we give all the praise to those who have positional power; they have a title and authority, therefore they are to be revered. For many people, their self worth hinges on what others might think or say.  Have we become a culture of people who feel worthless and take it out on everyone whom we come in contact with?  Do we constantly try to prove that we are worthy of love? The Rudolph paradigm that we have been living under is that you are ignored and even made fun of without a title, then when you receive it, the same people who made fun of you will now celebrate you.

What’s wrong with this picture?  Are they celebrating you or the title?  Have we created a system where people are desperately seeking the next best thing, only to find out it is a step ahead of them?  Have we set up a system where leaders with big titles are a little too celebrated? Are we really that shallow?  What’s wrong with being average?


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