Thursday, November 13, 2008

False Sense of Identity

A/N: This one was written on July 31, 2008. 

I'm beginning to believe that there is no such thing as an individual with a completely unique personality. Why? Everybody 
claims to be individual, to be "special," but they are just like everyone else in their "group." 

Take "emos" for an example. They will say that they don't believe in labels, believe in breaking off from the main, shunning what everyone else is doing and yet are dressed, act, and prefer the same things as any other emo on the American Planet. I understand I'm painting with a broad brush here, but that doesn't make that much of a difference. 

It is frustrating to see people who only claim to be different when they are just as mainstream as anyone in their classified group. It's hypocritical basically, and it's meaningless. A person has 
many identities through their lifetime - child, teenager, adult, student, employee, employer, friend, spouse, parent, grandparent, etc. The identity, or the mask that you wear will be taken off one day and never be put on again. If a person becomes a parent, one day their child will "fly the nest," and he/she will be retired from their role as parent. If these critical life-roles are so transient, how much more ephemeral are the "identities" that we assume to fit in with a certain crowd? 

The problem is, our American cosumerist society fuels this false sense of identity almost more than any other culture in the world. You can customize your brand new car - to look exactly like your neighbor's new car. You can choose the color of your phone or iPod - just like your friend's phone/iPod. That's just two examples I can think of on the sly, but I'd imagine the reader can think of more. 

Here's what it boils down to: Be yourself! That's a phrase you hear spewed out in music, movies, TV, internet, wherever, but I'll bet you cold cash that none of the people who are doing the spewing have any idea what it truly means to be yourself. For me, it means making my own identity through the things and people I love and will continue to love for the rest of my life. If I like video games and most of my friends call me "nerd," what do I care? If I prefer Greek mythology over my friend's perference for Roman, should I change my preference to be a better friend to them? Never. If I would rather spend my evening reading and writing, and other people want to go dancing and hanging with friends, will I condemn them? Should they mock me? No to both. 

I'm done here. React how you will, above hang my opinions.

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