The Dangers of Non-conformity
Ralph Waldo Emerson said that to be great is to be misunderstood. The same is true for non-conformists. One of the greatest dangers of being a non-conformist is being misunderstood. Humans are highly intelligent creatures, but we fear what we don’t understand, and when we are afraid we lash out. One example is the current fear of terrorism. When we were attacked our country made Islam synonymous with terrorism because we didn’t understand it, even though a large portion of followers of Islam are innocent of any violence toward America. When we don’t understand we something we believe that our own beliefs are superior because they are familiar, and people who believe otherwise end up being the subject of persecution. We often do not take the time to consider what is unfamiliar to us, and immediately take action to defend what we know. Being a non-conformist who challenges the current norm is dangerous because it attracts the ire of those who are not open to a different way of doing things.
Non-conformists also face the danger of challenging what is currently accepted. Many people do not wish for things to be different. Many are content to live their lives within the social boundaries set for them. When people do not conform to these rules, when they cross these social boundaries, people who are loathe to relinquish their current life will fight back. Generally the number of those fighting back is greater than the number of people who are challenging the status quo. When people challenge the status quo, the architects of the current will vehemently guard what they have created. People are apt at changing when it suits them, but many people will change to a certain point, but when they reach that point they will stop clambering for change. Non-conformity is seen as radical, and the society we live in does not encourage radical thinking. People will fight for the preservation of the current society, even of it is unknowingly, and attempt to stop changes that bypass what they are used to.