came across the above, thought provoking image on facebook today.
It begs the question Are we really free? We Americans
are under the delusion that we live in a free country, therefore
we are free. But we could never truly be free because we as a
species are social animals. When it comes to Social Behavior, you
must either adhere to the rules or go off and live out your life
all alone in the mountains somewhere. (Although, an 'alone'
lifestyle may seem appealing when it comes to getting away from
the right-wing sideshow.)
day one, we enter existence bombarded with indoctrination,
whether it is from religion, capitalism (corporate advertising),
politics or a set of Social Norms. If we dont follow the
crowd without question, we are made to feel outlawed, outside
looking in. People like Mitt Romney never have feelings that they
may not belong. In fact, these types believe they not only
belong, they run the place.
back to the facebook image above, my first response to this
picture was a quote from Janis Joplin's hit song called, Me
and Bobby McGee the line "Freedom's just another word
for nothin' left to lose!", is the embodiment of the word
freedom. We can only be free if we have no fear of losing
something. This no fear, is almost impossible to
achieve but that shouldnt stop us from trying to attain it.
Fear is a mental bondage that turns us into non-thinking
followers (like the teapublicans who are not aware of it). As I
searched for enlightenment from opinions shared on the Internet,
I came across an individuals thoughts that says it all.
thinkingblue (Picture below)
Actually, I think it's a pretty
insightful statement. When you've got nothing to lose, you
can do whatever you damned well please. When I was young,
single, and had no career to speak of, I could pack up and
move to another city, or go backpacking on a whim, or really
whatever I wanted.
Now I have a mortgage, a kid, a career,
and I'm not free at all. I get up every morning, go to work,
do what the boss says, pick the kid up from school, etc. And
if I decide to chuck the job, I'd lose the house, maybe the
marriage, family... So I'm trapped.
Not that I'd trade it away, but the fact
is we give up a lot of freedom when we take on the
responsibility of a middle class life. We become slaves to
our commitments and to the cost of losing what we've taken
years to build up.
Social norms are described by
sociologists as being laws that govern societys behaviors .
Although these norms are not considered to be formal laws within
society, they still work to promote a great deal of social
control. Social norms can be enforced formally (e.g., through
sanctions) or informally (e.g., through body language and
non-verbal communication cues.) If people do not follow these
norms then they become labeled as deviants and this can lead to
them being considered the outcast of society. What is considered
normal is relative to the location of the culture in
which the social interaction is taking place. Norms in every
culture create conformity that allows for people to become
socialized to the culture in which they live.