American Conversations: But, I’m a Product of my Environment…

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i ran across this conversation on one of my friends fb pages… and had to repost it- unedited. *names have been changed to protect identities (lol).*
andre initially asks the following question (via his status update):
If I’m a product of my environment and my subsequent conditioned behavior unconstructively contributes to society, which then directly effects my environment… where and how does the cycle end??
melody: the chicken came before the egg
anisha: when you make the conscious effort to end it.
andre: So what’s the origin of the conception of the chicken? Is society to blame or am I as an individual to blame for my contributions?
If you’ve always only known how to write with your right hand, how quickly and to what level of efficiency can you learn to write with your left?
franchesca: depends on how much u really wanna learn to write with ya left hand…
the cycle ends when YOU decide to let it end…
amerie: I agree that it is a matter of the amount of determination that the individual has to change. Doesn’t the saying go, so a man thinketh so is he..
andre: What if an individuals attempts to reform and break from their environment’s cycle are in vein, as the recipient(s) of the reformation have also been conditioned by society? Although their conditioning may be slightly altered, the recipients then act as entities of society that force the motion of the cycle.
So if you have two groups within an environment that have both been conditioned and are increasingly consumed by an opportunistic cycle with each passing day and experience, unknowingly implementing that learned knowledge to antagonize the progression of breaking both cycles AND the single cycle that is thus created… where or how does the cycle end??
franchesca: the individuals attempts will be in vein ONLY if he gives up and decides not to pursue the desired end. IT still would be the recipients choice 2 ACT as he has been conditioned by his society. Maybe the recipient needs to change the society he’s finds himself in then.
again both individuals must decide n want to break the cycle
amerie: I still think that it is an individuals choice. Even for those on the receiving end. If each person makes a conscious decision to live by a certain code of ethic, then even the altered conditioning of society won’t take over. You have to deny yourself daily to be become who you are suppose to be.
kenya: I was once a believer that we as “Americans” have the same opportunities to achieve at the same magnitude of our peers if we were determined to do so. I can say that I feel as though I fully used the resources that were given to me to my advantage to become a young college graduate working for a fortune 10 company. Does that mean I was more determined than the next man; or that I had the knowledge and guidance from those around me, to know the resources I had at my finger tips, and how to use them. Sometimes it’s not the lack of determination of a person that keeps them trapped, but the unawareness and the ignorance around them that keeps them there.
andre: A single individual cannot break the complete cycle that effects their environment, the individual can only attempt to change themselves. Furthermore, a single individual can change the environment they’re in but cannot change the society of which they exist. If their society directly effects their environment then the new environment will only be a deviation of the original.
Could it be that there is no correct answer, our minds were not created to fathom the intricacy of the synopsis, or that complete reformation is simply too late for our society?

nicole: Indeed a single individual cannot alone break the cycle. Instead, it will only change as a result of a combined effort of many in the society. Let us not forget, though, that society is made up of individuals and institutions. If many individuals decide they want to change the cycle (and actually make efforts toward that goal *KEY*), then, and only then, will they be able to also change the institutions that construct the societal norms.
andre: I agree completely. My only fear is that our society is no longer cohesive enough to make such a change as a unit. This misfortune leaves individuals who comprise the society to ask questions such as the one originally presented. I suppose the only true resolution is the unity of actively reformed individuals from each of the two groups. However, the reformation must be continuous within each individual, otherwise they will once again fall victim to the cycle. Tsk tsk
nicole: agreed. Enjoyed this conversation… Great thoughts.
_____________________
what i enjoyed most about the conversation was the fact that each individual knew exactly what the true nature of the discussion was… they knew who, or what group they were specifically conferring, but conversed in such a way that would not make one who was, let’s say, not within the (knowing) group become defensive– which would in turn takeaway from the progression that is clearly trying to be made… furthermore, this is a perfect example of “our” daily conversations, we, americans, are still fighting to break an “institution” a “conditioning” that has been so deeply ingrained within our culture, fighting a mindset that was strategically placed there for centuries upon centuries by… well, by our oppressors. . . and now some ex-oppressors and some of the lineage of the oppressed perpetuate behaviors that do our country, our world, a disservice…
we must change one by one… discuss. ask questions. and diversify yourself as a being.

via The Urban Gentleman II
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3 Comments


  1. yeah I agree, its like we all know what the convo was about… and even when you were talking you didnt blatantly say it.

    the point is, is that we have to all go beyond stereotypes and false perceptions, befriend people from various backgrounds and what not.

    anyway, good post

  2. i agree with leo

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