The Significance of Childhood
“No dictator, no invader, can hold an imprison population by force of arms forever.” – J. Michael Straczynski. Equality 7-2521 is imprisoned under the Council’s rule, along with the rest of his society, where being different and defying the brotherhood could lead to death. Anthem by Ayn Rand is about Equality 7-2521 discovering himself as an individual, and rebelling against the conformist strategies of the Council. Dictatorial leaders of the Council enforce the rule of children growing up away from their families to impact their lives at an impressionable age by not allowing them to make their own decisions, controlling their minds with the ‘correct’ rules and beliefs, and inducing fear of going against the rules of the Council.
Society is unable to make their own decisions, allowing the Council to easily control them. Equality 7-2521 is recalling the instructions of the Teachers when he was younger, and why his thoughts about his own preference of a job were unjust. “You shall do that which the Council of Vocations shall prescribe for you” (Rand 22). In other words, he cannot choose his own job; it would be simply erroneous according to the Council and Teachers. Furthermore, because all of society was raised under the Council’s rule, they have never known what it is like to be entitled to their own opinion, or having the privilege of free will. The Council set it up this way in the fact, if society does not know how to think for themselves, they never will. Not being able to think for yourself means not acknowledging your opinion about something. Following Equality 7-2521’s career assignment, he is happy, filled with joy as to the fact of him working for his brothers. “…and we would work for our brothers, gladly and willingly” (Rand 26). The Council set this up in a way where the brotherhood would always work for one another, selflessness. On the contrary, parents would want their children to stand up for what they believe in, out of love for their children. The Council does not love any of the brothers, and they are only there to control them, to keep peace in society. The Council forces them into their opinions, making them think they are their own at a young age, which can end up staying with them forever due to synapses.
The Council forces children to grow up away from their parents so they could implant the right, conformed ideas into their brains, controlling them from the very start. In research done by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, it is proven that certain synapses, connections among neurons in the brain, implanted at a young age stay in the brain for the rest of the child’s life. “The development of synapses occurs at an astounding rate during children's early years, in response to the young child's experiences. … By the time children reach adolescence, about half of their synapses have been discarded, leaving the number they will have for most of the rest of their lives”...