2012 – 7th Grade National 4th Place Winner

Nicole Burckhardt, Minnesota.

What is the meaning of life ?

The meaning of life is to have fun; to travel the world; to spend time with your family; to be grateful for what you have.

I say that’s bull.

“Get rich and die young.” –Unknown

In modern society, the epitome of success and status is money and fame. Everyone turns on the television and they see millionaires, presidents, and celebrities. They are skinny and they are gorgeous. We look at them and say, “That’s what I want to be when I grow up.” We don’t look at overweight, lower class Americans struggling to make ends meet and say, “Why can’t I be like them.” No matter how happy or satisfied with their life, we don’t care.

Looks. Net worth. That’s it.

At the end of successful peoples’ lives, they all say, “I wish I would have spent more time at home with my family than at the office,” yet the next generation goes off to college and a 60 hour week just as unhappy and ignorant as the last. They are focused on their career and nothing can stand in their way. They want to make a name for themselves. Then they die. Repeat. That’s the story of contemporary American lives.

Will we ever break out of this cycle? I don’t think so. We look at evolving countries and say, “Good for them. They will have easier access to water, food, clothing, and shelter.” After a few decades, they create an economy and freak out over the tiniest recession, drought, or crime increase.

Mo’ money mo’ problems.

Today’s society is shallow, and the meaning of life is to make a ton of money, be famous, or to be beautiful.


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