Conformity – Sarah Cain

“The opposite for courage is not cowardice, it is conformity. Even a dead fish can go with the flow.”     Jim Hightower


This quotation by Jim Hightower represents my exact views on conformity. Being an individual is a rare find these days. It is a lot easier to conform to what the people around you say, do, act or even think.


People usually wonder why fads catch on so quickly. About three years ago, the trend popular with kids caught on as rapidly as if it was just overnight. The idea was simple and had many people hitting their heads and asking, “Why didn’t I come up with that?” It was a rubber band that could be worn on the wrist of a child. But that wasn’t the ingenious idea. When taken off, the band morphed into a shape, an object of any kind. But the best part of the bands were that they never lost their shape, no matter how many times you stretched it, it would still be that object. The idea was called Silly Bandz and children all around the United States wanted them in demand. They were made into gazillion different shapes and came in packs with objects of the same sorts. For example a pack of “Rock N’ Roll” would include a drum set, a guitar, a microphone stand and maybe a star or a lightening bolt. The whole idea of Silly Bandz was first to have kids begging their parents to buy these packs of cool shapes but eventually turn into a trend where Silly Bandz engulfed the arms of children, to trade with others.


Unfortunately, Silly Bandz was the perfect trend to teach kids conformity, just like many other inventive manufacturing ploys.  The more Silly Bandz you had on your wrist, the more you could have to trade. Kids thought the bands they had were special and different shapes meant more or less to them, which was a factor in if the trade was a good deal or not. Children with many Silly Bandz thought that they were considered cool because they had all the shapes that meant the most to them and they had the most out of all of their friends. But, little did they know, children around the world felt the same way about their bands and had the same amount as they did.


We find it easy to conform to what the latest trend is because we think its cool, we like it or we want to be a part of it. However, when we follow exactly what everyone else is doing, we are losing more of our individuality. This doesn’t just happen with children and their Silly Bandz, but throughout your whole life. Resisting in a new trend might end up with you being called “lame”, but could you have the courage to stay an individual and “do you”?


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