Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Pressure to Conform

By Dr James Dobson

It has always been interesting for me to observe the “herd” instinct in teenagers around the world. There’s just a remarkable sameness to their culture today, no matter where you go. In Australia, Russia, Latin America, and the United States, adolescents tend to dress in similar ways and hold common attitudes.

And why not? They’re watching the same movies and television shows and listening to the same music. The next generation is just being homogenised by this electronic revolution and sometimes the “urge to merge” becomes humorous.

Perhaps you have read the story of a teen choir performing in Miami. In the middle of the Battle Hymn of the Republic, one young woman in the front row passed out. Well, that planted the idea of fainting in 32 other impressionable heads. Minutes later, a boy buckled and disappeared from the back row. And then a girl in the middle took a dive. By the end of the song, 20 kids lay flat on the ground.

Conformity is one of the most powerful forces in the life of a teenager, and today, that impulse recognises very few cultural or geographic boundaries.

From TODAY, Voices - Monday, 19-July-2010

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