If you thought kids munching on Tide Pods was a sure sign of the apocalypse, guess again. America’s young have outdone themselves.
Teenagers are genius at inventing idiotic things to try, but this new one makes Tide Pod consumption almost seem logical by comparison. The latest viral stunt is called the “condom snorting challenge,” in which you apparently take an unwrapped condom, inhale it through one of your nostrils, and keep inhaling until the condom comes out of your mouth.
I know. Hope you’re not eating right now.
We all did dumb things as kids, but this is kind of its own category of dumbness. In the social media age, it seems like each new “challenge,” dare, or viral attempt at stardom leads youth to greater heights of stupidity.
What drives challenges like this one, the Tide Pods, or the “cinnamon” challenge a few years ago? Attention. Teens have always craved attention, of course, but now they can actually quantify it with personalized metrics in the form of “likes,” “views” and “subscribers.” It’s serious business.
This social media attention-getting culture helps explain why a handful of Parkland, Florida teens have been hoarding the spotlight and are reluctant to let it go.
They were raised on this stuff.
They were raised on this stuff --- the dopamine hits of “likes” and “followers,” where anybody can be just one viral post away from superstardom. Now that they’ve achieved a certain level of online following, they feel like they have to keep fueling it with new outrageous statements and media appearances.
During the past two months, America has seen an insane level of teen worship, over this idea that the current generation is somehow more enlightened than any that came before and will, therefore, use its genius to lead us to the promised land of no more gun violence. Right. Every new challenge, dare or viral trend betrays that idea. This year has already seen Tide Pods and condom snorting, and it’s only April.
I don’t mean to disparage an entire generation based on the actions of a handful of morons. Every generation has its share of duds and heroes. But it’d be nice to hear from a few more of the heroes because the current headline-grabbers don’t bode well.
On the bright side, at least parents can rest assured teens are practicing safe snorting.