The Instigator
miss.sasha
Pro (for)
The Contender
Langepatekjaeger
Con (against)

Is conformity good for society?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/7/2016 Category: Society
Updated: 3 weeks ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 100 times Debate No: 96811
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miss.sasha

Pro

First of all, people conform because of normative influence (they conform to "fit in" with the group) and informational influence (they believe the group is more informed than they are, and therefore, more correct). Conformity is good for society because these two influences help promote law and order, and positive behaviour in people. We naturally conform to feel accepted which can have positive influences on our behaviour, and we tend not to deviate from the norm for fear of being ostracised by the group, thus being viewed negatively. Yes, there are people who may conform to the group doing wrong, but majority of people will feel inclined to follow the group doing the right thing. Even non-conformists conform with each other! Conformism is a positive concept in human society because it influences people to gravitate towards the majority of society -- the positive parts.

** I'm just doing this debate as part of an assignment. I would very much appreciate an opposing opinion so I can better my argument. (:
Langepatekjaeger

Con

I accept your challenge and look forward to an intellectual debate.

I'm going to start by quoting you. "Even non-conformists conform with each other!" The concept that you use is one that detailed in 1984. "Individualism is Conformity." It's true. In a society where young children are encouraged to "follow your dreams" or are told that "you can be anything you want," having an sense of individualism is, indeed, conforming to the standards of society. We could go on with this forever, but I hope we agree not to get into an infinite spiral about this.

First and foremost, individualism is the driving force for innovation. If it weren't for people that thought outside the box, sometimes with controversial and ingenious ideas. Take, for example, Steve Jobs. At the time, computers were ugly machines that didn't do much. No one had a computer in their home. However, Jobs had the unusual idea that, somehow, a computer could be a beautiful thing--a thing that people would want in their living room, or in their office. There were many that thought he was crazy for having the idea that this was even possible. This pioneering idea led to the invention of modern-day computers, something without which our society would be unimaginable to most.

Second, individualism is the driving force for change. Although certain conformity, to some extent, do promote law and order, following every rule the government passes is not always a good thing. The American Revolution would never have taken place if the Founding Fathers conformed to the rules of the English government. Although now, the Founding Fathers are admired for being logical, at the time, their thinking was radical, and even despised by some.

However, you argue that conformity results in positive behavior and law and order. Individualism also results in the same thing. Human beings were and are all born with a set of strict, moral values. For example, we all know that killing a person is wrong. When we decide that killing a person is wrong, we don't decide that because society tells us that, we decide that killing is wrong because our conscience tells us that it is wrong. Expanding on that, let's say that the government passes a law that everyone steal money from another person. Even though you may feel inspired by the group that bravely opposes the government on this law, it is ultimately your sense of right and wrong that tells you not to follow this law. If everyone in the country conformed to that law, you might feel pressured to steal, however most people would still not follow the law. This ultimately proves that one's individual sense of right and wrong is stronger than one's desire to conform.

Because of these reasons, and other reasons that I will outline in further discussion, I believe that individualism is an important and vital part of society, and that conformity is the first step to dystopia.
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