A Face in the Crowd

Am I no better than the crowd I run with? Am I vulnerable to forsaking my own values when I'm with enough people that try to convince me otherwise? Why? For God's sake, why? Because I want to belong. I don't want to be apart from those I'm with. Yet, I know the crowd is not always right. I also want to be right.

The crowd yells, "stone her!" My self says, "no!" She derserves due process. Now, that's right. But the crowd yells, "stone her!" My self says, "that's wrong!" If I choose to pay attention to self, the crowd will reject me, AND, possibly stone me, too! If I pay attention to the crowd, I will feel a sense of belonging. That feels good. But I will regret that choice later on. That always happens when I forsake my own values.

Get me by myself, and I will proclaim that I will rise above the crowd and do the right thing. But what happens when I get with the crowd? How do I behave? I look to see if anyone else in the crowd wants to do the right thing. Nobody moves to do so. If I want to do the right thing and say, "don't stone her," I must expose myself as the only one in the crowd with that behavior.

What do I do? What would you do?

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Gary Smith
Oct 4 2020

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