Forego doing what’s popular to do what’s right


Crabs in a barrel

Mo’Nique uttered this remark ( my title) in her recent Oscar acceptance speech for best supporting actress.

I’m assuming it had some meaning within the Oscar community, although I wasn’t sure to what she was referring and I have not found it  yet.

That phrase, “forego doing what’s popular to do what’s right” has so many applications in the real world. It takes a very self-aware person with a strong moral and ethical core to follow an individual conscience in the midst of the crowd.

One can literally be killed in some instances in trying to do the right thing. It isn’t easy traveling the opposite way on a street when all the traffic appears to be heading in the opposite direction, even if you know you are traveling the right way. It feels much safer to turn around and be swept up by the flow.

One of the earliest social awarenesses that we perceive is being an insider or outsider in elementary school. We know who have become the “cool” kids by third grade or earlier. We know whether we fit in. The need for most to feel accepted is a strong influence on how we live our lives.

Pre-teen girls and boys soon know whether the clothes they wear, the homes where they live, even the occupations of their parents are socially acceptable. The actions of the parents reflect on their children and the children know it.They very early feel the effects of peer pressure.

A person who has the audacity to be independent enough to forego doing what is popular is often like the crab who tries to crawl out of the barrel. I have never personally experienced seeing this sight, but from what I hear, when one crab tries to crawl out of the barrel, the other crabs endeavor to pull the crab back down again.

It is very difficult standing up against the crowd. If the others in the crowd don’t want you doing something different, they try to suck you back down. If they, for whatever reason, find you unacceptable, they repeatedly shun you until you give up and get the message that you are among the undesirable.

Trying to be among the popular is a very strenuous position to maintain.

I think there is much freedom when one feels the liberty to turn a back upon the popular f0lks if they are involved in activities that one does not feel is the right path to follow. The internal pressure to follow one’s own path has to become greater than the external pressure to stay in the status quo.

As I stated earlier, I don’t know to what MoNique was referring, but I totally think that it is about time that the US as a nation, starts doing what is right and forget about doing what is popular with the big boys who control the world. I think it could give us a much-needed sense of freedom and justice.

Namaste. Attic Annie

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