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The Stampede

Stop societal standards!

Maddie Dailey, Op-Ed Editor

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   Looking around the school and at home the banners, sweatshirts, hats, colors, and dramatized mascots are a constant reminder of the unreal expectation that everyone should go to college.

    Take a glance at any retail or beauty ad and the “flawless” models are a constant reminder of the unreal expectation that everyone should be skinny, tall, and have perfect white teeth.

    Scroll through the countless social media pages across the world and the photoshopped, edited, falsely positive images of people’s lives are a constant reminder of the unreal expectation that everyone can afford an electronic device, an expensive trip, a family photographer, or even a camera for that matter.

    Stroll through the neighborhoods here in Danville or Alamo, some of the richest areas in California, and the evident competitiveness of neighbors to own bigger and better cars, houses, furniture, and clothes is a constant reminder of the unreal expectation that everyone has a house, a car, or more than one outfit of their own.

    “The Bubble” truly shields our little community from all the “propaganda” that bombards our world today and we are unconsciously a part of it.  

    Propaganda is everywhere in the billboards we drive by on the freeway, the ads we hear and see on the radio and TV encouraging conformity and there is no way around it.

    I see ads on buildings, on my social media feeds, and on my computer everyday.  I have also seen their effect when everyone starts showing up to school with the same $200 shoes or rose gold iPhone 7’s.  

    Even when we give back to those who are less fortunate, when we go to the gym, or when we go on vacation we are spreading this propaganda simply by wearing our new LuLu Lemon leggings, or pulling out our iPhone 7 to check the time, or staying in an expensive hotel bringing with us two or three suitcases each.

    No, it is not our fault that we own these things and by no means should we not use the things we have the privilege to own.  Most people I know in this area have worked hard to get to where they are now.

    No, it is not our fault.  Society, Conformity, Discrimination, and Greed are to blame.

    It is Greed’s fault that the idea that someone else might own more than you is a cause for you to feel hatred, jealousy, or mortification.

    It is Discrimination’s fault that someone’s sexual orientation, race, or religion are ways for others to assume things about who you are.

    It is Conformity’s fault that because of the way a single person lives, others can feel superior because of the way they live.  This “superiority” is too often flaunted and encouraged.

    It is Society’s fault that all of these things happen.  Can you do anything about it?  No.

    Can we do anything about it?  Yes.

    Only as a society can we fix the standards we have set.

    As a school and a community, we don’t see as much loss, poverty, racism or violence as many other places across the world.  Don’t get me wrong, it is present and even a small presence can hurt everyone.

    But, because of where we live it is even more important that we work to change the bar people set long ago.  A change is long overdue.  

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Stop societal standards!