A Dissenting Opinion This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   I believe that being sanctimonious is the ultimate victory of conformity. I dislike conformity. To conform (i.e. be what you are supposed to be and think what you are supposed to think) is to bind, mute, hide and destroy any hope of individuality.

One subject that everyone seems to agree on lately is the environment. In the interest of thought, I once asked someone, "Why should I care?" He just stood there, with this annoyed look on his face and said, "The Earth is everyone's responsibility." Could his reasons only run as deep as the slogans he'd been taught? I did a little reading on it too. It takes one ozone-depleting CFC molecule 50 years to reach the ozone layer. In 50 years I'll be ready to leave this planet. I just can't motivate myself to care about it, no matter how much environmental propaganda they push in front of my face.

Maybe it's just that my generation's self-righteous, crusading attitudes were lost on me, but even with that in mind, I still don't care. "You don't want the whole world to be a mess," he told me. Why not? My room is a mess of epic proportions and it is one of my favorite places in the world. Even if you are a control freak who loathes disorder, just sweep up a piece of land and build an orderly little house on it.

One thing man has control over and freedom in is himself, his own mind, his own plot, and I see this environmental brainwashing as more of an encroachment upon that control and that freedom than human refuse piles could ever be. n


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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