Conformity Versus Change

by Marilyn Muir, LPMAFA

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I recently received an email that is being passed around on the internet – “I’m Tired” is the title, and it was authored by Robert A. Hall. Later forwarding brought it to my desktop as “We are all tired. Let the revolution begin”. Research indicates that it was initiated in March, 2009. Even though Mr. Hall obviously doesn’t like left wingers, this right-wing author does have some points I can still identify with: working hard for a living, earning my way, bailing out those who caused this awful dilemma, Islamic militance of any persuasion, discrimination against any color or creed including reverse discrimination, illegal aliens and more. This former Vet and Massachusetts legislator is pretty disgusted with what has come to pass and I can’t blame him for being disgusted. I’m pretty disgusted myself with what has been done to us by our own.

Outsiders did not bring us to this crisis, our own did this to us. Whether it was done by greed, or dishonesty, or elitism, or any other “ism” you want to name, no one outside of us did this. We as citizens allowed this to be done and we must face that in order to fix it. Many of us are disgusted and voted for change to stop the nonsense. I do have a problem with all these years of misuse of our system being placed at the doorstep of the new team on the block. It took longer than a few months to produce this mess. The same thing happened with Hoover. He was in office six months and I don’t care how good he was, he could not have created the Great Depression by himself in that six months! He had the leadership reins. However, it is the word “revolution” in that email that truly scared me.

We were born in revolution. Revolution is our middle name. This is our normal state. Do we want it to be the revolution of our forefathers, with its terrible toll in lives, fortunes, with the destruction of 233 years of effort? That happened in both our Revolutionary and our Civil Wars where family fought family as the division between loyalties escalated into open warfare. In the Revolutionary War, those loyal to the Crown (we were British subjects way back then) and those demanding individual rights caused enormous and divisive heartache for the participants. Benjamin Franklin lost his only child, his son, to this division. We had to win; to lose to the Crown would have created hardships that can only be imagined.

We all know of the Civil War and the terrible destruction of lives, families, and property. Our nation almost collapsed during that awful moment in time. We would have been sitting ducks for any nation that wanted to attack while we were weakened. A lack of physical proximity prevented that. Can you imagine what would happen now if we as citizens physically fought each other? The military governments of the world would immediately go for our jugular. We don’t want to go that route!

Guided by the hope and vision that we could do better than the previous eight years, in 2008 the American electorate voted for change. The ongoing battle between conformity and change is polarizing our nation. On November 4th, we, the majority of USA voters, voted out the old establishment and reached for change. But conformity refused to grasp that the USA electorate demanded change and so conformity fights the same old battle. Those who want to preserve the status quo and to keep us stuck in our unsuccessful past just can’t accept that those of us who wanted change have not changed our minds. Change is necessary to get us out of the quagmire produced prior to that election. The new kids on the block did not cause this problem (which took decades of effort), the old kids on the block caused the problem and they haven’t changed their minds about how to further run the country into the ground.

This time conformity has adopted a strange costume and strategy. It shouts that it wants change, gets in your face, demands its rights, screams down legitimate discussion, plants misinformation and sows fear. It is in a fight to the death. Why? Conformity wants to win. Just what would it win? This is conformity, with its feet firmly planted in the past, so its ultimate goal is conformity, tradition, the past, status quo. Conformity wants us to do what we have done in the past to bring us to this terrible position, to continue those actions, to remain stuck. To do so means the defeat of everything our Founding Fathers established and trusted us to grow and evolve. Those incredible men were forward-seekers, not fear-mongers. Conformity represents no change regardless of the tactics it uses to achieve its goal.  Conformity is using the semblance of change as a means to its personal end. This is a masquerade. We the voters must distinguish between the change we voted in and the false change being waged by conformity. We voted for change because the past was preventing us from moving forward. We cannot move forward if we are stuck in a past, which has already proven itself unworkable. We must release our past in order to face our future.

Change is always risky, and therefore scary, but necessary in order to move from stagnation to growth, from the past which binds us to itself to the future which uplifts and beckons. Our Founding Fathers moved out of their past as British subjects to reach for the hope of the future that made them American free citizens (not subjects). The conformists of the revolutionary era were Tories, loyal British subjects. Had they won, there would be no America. At that point in history, change won. The Founding Fathers were agents of change willing to risk all for the hope of individuality and freedom.

Which are you? It’s okay to be scared because change requires risk. Is there a future if we stay stuck in the past? The energy of change is screaming, “Yes, we can”. The energy of conformity is screaming, “No, we won’t.” Where are you in this? I am a “Yes, we can” person, and I sincerely hope that if you voted for or support change you will stay strong and allow change to win this ferocious battle with conformity. Decision time is every moment of every day and these decisions will have consequences and results.  President Obama, rev up that powerful engine you had working for you for your election. Supporters of change, get out there and fight misinformation and fear with the truth. The question is, do you want the past or the future, fear and lies or truth, conformity or change to win? Put your money and your efforts where your mouth is. If you believe in hope and change, fight for it through your words and your efforts (not your fists).

Published on EZ online October, 2009, republished with slight editing.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.