Years ago when Robert Downey Jr. was talking about his struggles with drug addiction, he said that one of its most corrosive effects on any person, apart from the physiological effects of the substances, is that it turns you into a masterful liar and an unreliable, dishonorable person, even to the people that love and care for you the most dearly. There is just no way to continue to function – to maintain employment, maintain one’s freedom, maintain one’s relationships (to some minimum level) – than to become a skulking deceiver. It is very demoralizing and disrespectful of oneself to operate that way, particularly when you knowingly let yourself slide (submit) into that addictive way of operating without stopping yourself. The losses (lost relationships, opportunities, etc.) that remain even after coming clean he said he still carries with him.
The same corrosive effect acts on you when you continue to knowingly go-along with things that aren’t true to you, let yourself be silenced in expressing and pursuing the things that are deeply right and meaningful to you, and submit to acting & conducting yourself in ways that you know aren’t authentic. And when such submission results in permanent losses of things such as freedom and prosperity for yourself and those you love, you carry the knowledge that you gave-into it with you thereafter. Americans haven’t had this collective experience yet so they don’t appreciate it. But when government takes away your freedom, ability to create, to build, and to innovate independently, it not only removes your physical freedoms and wealth, it also dims your spirit. Moreover, when it indoctrinates your kids this way, their spirits never even get to shine with the full potential of their creative brightness in the world.
After the fall of the Berlin Wall, there were many excited people in the west looking to Russia, with its historically rich culture of music, literature, science, etc. and its abundant natural resources, as a tremendous new opportunity for business development alliances and for new growth. But after 2-3 generations of living under Soviet rule, the vitality and pneuma of the Russian people, who became used to being told what to do, had dimmed. There was no entrepreneurial spirit among them, no understanding of how to form capital and resources to build businesses nor of how to run them. The only group familiar with entrepreneurship was the one that had been operating entrepreneurially all along in the black market: the Russian Mafia. It moved-in on the oil industry (the mainstay of the economy), bought-off a lot of the new politicos, and now Russia operates very inefficiently as an oligarchy with many people still existing at quite meager standards of living.
It’s wrong to be labeled a racist just because you hold a different opinion than someone or voted a different way (and happen to be white). And it’s worse to be fired, de-platformed, or doxed just for exercising your birthrights to vote and believe as you choose. And every time you accept that suppression, knowing that its bullshit, it demoralizes you just a bit more – because you submitted your integrity and authenticity again for convenience; just to get-by for-now. And you do if for the very same reason that (functioning) drug addicts operate inauthentically: Because to stand-up and get real here and now causes immediate difficulties that you prefer to avoid. And by remaining inauthentic, and ‘comfortably-numb’ from your demoralization, you pretend that things are going to continue functioning; that there will no eventual reckoning with the creeping losses and damage that are accruing. You are in denial.
There is no need to go head-to-head nor even engage with people when they call you names just for making your own decisions and forming your own opinions. If you merely smile at them and cheerily say something like: “You believe in some really funny things my friend” and then go on your way, that is a successful non-submission. If they indeed were out to get you to try to appease them or to cower to them, it will piss them off. Trump always did that type stuff to the leftie press – he never bowed down to their moralizing and slanderous accusations like they wanted him to – he brushed it off and at-times made fun of if. It completely unhinged them and drove them wild. And he loved it.
Drug addicts who recover and mend the bridges they’ve burned restore a lot of the sense of self-worth that they gave away, especially the ones who go help other people out of addiction. But if you know that you irretrievably gave away the rights that you and your progeny still have to pursue life, liberty, and happiness in your own individual way in exchange for some immediate ease and convenience, your demoralization will be lasting. Don’t think that demoralization is just a side-effect of getting you to submit – it is one of the goals of it, and the left has been working at it here for decades. Here’s a trained expert from the cold-war era talking about it.
So don’t behave like a skulking junkie when you don’t have anything to hide or be ashamed of – stand up and face some discomfort now, because the most likely alternative if you don’t is that you’ll be facing it later when its much worse. Hold your head up. Be true to yourself. Respect and love yourself for who you are. Stand up for yourself. It’s important for you to do that now not just for your own sake, but for everyone’s. No matter what anyone says, you are never a bad person for doing that.
The same goes in the workplace too – its demoralizing to go-along with processes, initiatives, or directives that you can’t fully and genuinely get-behind, and its not comfortable to raise your hand about them. But as long as you have a good answer to the question “Well how would you suggest we change this, then ?” you can usually make your point, confidentially, to one person of-influence provided you don’t then go talking it up around the rest of the office. The worst that will usually happen is just hearing “thanks, but we’re not going to do that”.
An effective way to a nice society (and a good individual life for oneself) is for everyone to continually work on cultivating the best version of themselves they can become, and then not being afraid to operate authentically in the world as that; not submitting to being less. Its the seed-corn of real value-generation, novel innovation, ethics (sorry HR – nobody ‘learns’ ethics in a classroom – those programs only teach employees how to ethically step through certain situational minefields and how to otherwise behave in an ethical-looking manner), and of opportunistic risk-taking. Individuals being who they are in their work and boldly pushing their own value-add with a strong work ethic is the main reason why the United States has for generations been the place that has innovated, produced, and evolved beyond all others.Today many point fingers and make noises at other people while doing nothing to work on their own qualities. That’s backwards, divisive, and ineffective. Nobody ever really changes anyone else unless that other person already wants that. But unfortunately most of the loudest people berating others now actually know that very well. They don’t care whether you change or evolve – only that you submit. But of-course that remains your decision.