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Conformity And Rebellion In Two Kinds, By Amy Tan And The Ones Who Walk Away

1115 words - 4 pages

Throughout American history, we have seen the United States become more progressive in their social issues, such as the abolishment of slavery, women’s suffrage, and the Civil Rights Movement. But as time has passed, we have encountered another group that is being discriminated against: homosexuals. Some states try their best to give equal rights to homosexuals so that they are respected as equally as everyone else. But in many states, such as Kansas and Arizona, private companies and businesses are given the right to turn down homosexual couples if it interferes with their religious beliefs. These two states also included places like hospitals where homosexuals can be denied from medical attention. These laws are very inhumane and are very hurtful to a large population of people today. But what if the people in states such as Kansas and Arizona think it is okay to have these laws instilled?
In the short story "Two Kinds," by Amy Tan, the mother in the story tries to do what is best for her daughter to become a world-renowned prodigy. This issue could also be connected to the short story "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas," by Ursula K. LeGuin, where the people of Omelas are happy in their lives but also see that there is this person sleeping in a closet and being treated like an animal, but still carry on with their lives. There are people who speak up against these hateful laws towards homosexual people, but there is also the group of people that keep silent and do not say anything with fear that they might be labeled with words such as "gay" or "faggot." The two stories have a deep connection with each other in the sense that they affect the different reactions that citizens have to laws that limit the lives of others. Conformity and rebellion are evident in both pieces and the social issues of discrimination of homosexual, where people can speak up for the rights of others, or keep quite if it does not interfere with their lives.

The short story "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas" offers us a story about a small simple town called Omelas. This town is described as a small perfect utopia where everyone gets along and no crime occurs whatsoever. But there is one catch to the small perfect city: in a basement hides this small child locked up in a room with a mop as his only companion. There is as the influence of the drug called drooz “which first bring a great lightness and brilliance to mind and limbs…” (LeGuin 382). He is only to be locked up and treated like an animal. The life of one person must be sacrificed for the enjoyment of the lives of many others. A lot of the people are okay with this occurring, but a small portion of the rest leave the town and go somewhere else. This is a huge choice to be made by the people who walk away from Omelas. They speak up against the inhumanity of the one life that is being sacrificed and in turn are pushed to leave the city in hopes for change.

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