Conformity vs. Individuality
"People don't talk about anything ... and nobody says anything different from anyone else." This quote, from Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, demonstrates how this fictional society had no individuality, yet they expressed no disprovement of the conformity. To be so simple minded as this civilization was would have eventually led to self-destruction. To support my theory, recall in the novel when the old lady chose to commit suicide because she did not have freedom. She felt that even though she was "free" she was "enslaved" by the enforcement of limited knowledge.
Without individuality in today's society, the world would be filled with a population of large amounts of followers as opposed to leaders. Do you know where and what this society would be like if we didn't have leaders like Rosa Parks, Susan B. Anthony, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., etc.? I presume that we wouldn't be as strong of a nation as we are now. We wouldn't have any freedoms or rights that these leaders fought so hard to achieve. We wouldn't be able to experience historical periods such as the Industrial Revolution, the Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights Movement, etc. for all of these eras express different ideas, inventions, and opinions and gradually erased some people's ignorance towards these changes. As an African-American, I take great pride in the Harlem Renaissance because this was a time when we got to prove the "ignorant" people wrong as we demonstrated our artistic and intellectual abilities.
"What do we want in this country, above all? To be happy!" I disagree with this quote made by Captain Beatty due to the fact that with a society like ours full of different people with different outlooks towards different things, it is impossible to make everyone happy. What I think our country wants above all is equality, freedom, and peace, something our past leaders have fought so courageously to obtain. Being happy all the time isn't everything, it is beneficial to experience other feelings therefore, allowing yourself to understand you and others better. Constantly being happy, in my opinion, is a false appearance and attitude; you have to be happy physically, emotionally, and mentally and the people in this society were unconsciously unhappy.
"You like bowling, don't you, Montag?"
"Golf is a fine game."
As you may have noticed, this society dared not to have different opinions or to disagree. Everyone was predictable and identical, wouldn't that be a "perfect society?" No one disagreeing, no disputes, no wars? I beg to differ because disagreeing and disputing create change. They also allow us to state our opinions as well as to listen to others opinions. After allowing other opinions to be broadcasted, you might identify an error in your opinion which could change your whole outlook on something. Widening your horizons and taking a dip in the sea of "why's" should be an experience we all have the chance in experimenting with.
"Not everyone born free and equal ... but everyone made equal. Each man the image of each other." Just imagine sitting in a classroom where everyone acted, talked, and looked the same way. They always agreed and never opposed. Instead of having that individuality and being at one with yourself, and one in the eye's of others, you'd be accounted as a whole. Our country today is not only a "melting pot" of cultures and races, but one of different ideas and knowledge waiting to be served, but if the people are not allowed to eat, then the knowledge is never obtained.
(By Cbbutterfly from www.planepapers.com/Assets)