Why the Majority?

December 10, 2007
By Tiffany Miller, Anchorage, AK

Be it insecurity, apathy, or fear of what others may say, most people cannot form original ideas about anything. They always go with the majority, even if it goes against their better judgment. Whatever the case may be, people need to make their own decisions, and instead of relying on others to decide for them, stand firm for what they believe is right.

“A ‘no’ uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a ‘yes’ merely uttered to please…” (Gandhi). Gandhi supports the idea that it is better to go with your own opinion, rather than to go along with the crowd. It makes sense, why go against your better judgment just to please other people? For example, many teenagers today are pressured into saying “yes” to drugs and sex just because it pleases their peers.

Then there are the insecure. These people form their own opinions, share their ideas with other people, and then if the group has a different opinion, they change their mind to go with the majority. Take for example, the Israelites. They had their mind set that they were going to enter the Promised Land under the guidance of Moses and God. They started off good, but when ten of the twelve spies came back saying that the people in the land were dangerous, they changed their mind, and wanted to return to slavery. They were off to a good start, but were swayed by the ideas of the majority of the spies.

Also in the Bible, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were told if they did not bow down before King Nebuchadnezzar’s image of gold, they would be thrown into the furnace. However, they already formed their own opinion about what they believed. They were not about to go against their better judgment and God’s will to please the king. The three boys knew they would probably die, but they stood firm in what they knew was right. In the end, because they stood firm on what they believed, the Lord saved them. They walked out of the furnace without even the scent of smoke on them or their clothes. People should learn to stand up for what they believe, even if they are uncertain about what will happen.

What will happen to those who cannot form their own opinions now? What will happen when they are forces to do so as an adult? Form your own opinions now, and you won’t have to worry about it later on.

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