In this day and age when the value of entertainment is left unquestioned, nay, unexamined and immune from criticism, when people act as if entertainment is an end in itself, what other than mere time keeps us far from Brave New World? It’s gotten beyond the point where we’ve uncritically accepted entertainment as a general good: now, anything can be justified by someone calling it entertainment and claiming that it cannot be held to the same standards as things that make an explicit claim to truth.
I’m not against the existence of entertainment: without question, many parts of the Bible are entertaining – the trickster schemes in Genesis? the exaltation of Mordecai? – even though we know entertainment isn’t the primary purpose. Same goes for Herodotus, for Zhuangzi, for others. What I do oppose is the fact that we refuse to put entertainment under any scrutiny, either ethical or aesthetic. This removes our own ethical and aesthetic judgements from any higher standard of judgement, which for a follower of Christ is God’s revelation in the Bible. Can we accept an outcome like that?
Plato’s Socrates in The Republic disapproves of art (and entertainment) that misportrays the true nature of things. One must wonder if there is something to it, if we really should be paying much closer attention to our media choices, if it’s not just pornography and those other things in the “bad” bin that we should avoid wasting our time with.