In the Ayn Rand book titled “Anthem” we encounter a vision of a society where everyone is equal, and the lowest common denominator is the standard set for all the common folk.
Equality is the goal, and serving the State is the ultimate goal of everyone given the right to live. There is no individual or individuality in the society, there is only “we, us, them” and no “I, me, mine.” That is why when we read Equality 7-2521’s comments he refers to himself in the plural as we and not I. In the story, all the citizens in this society are like the walking dead with no life in their controlled existence.
The primary character named Equality 7-2521 writes in his private Journal that, “We strive to be like all our brother men, for all men must be alike. Over the portals of the Palace of the World Council, there are words cut in the marble, which we repeat to ourselves whenever we are tempted:
“WE ARE ONE IN ALL AND ALL IN ONE. THERE ARE NO MEN BUT ONLY THE GREAT _WE_, ONE, INDIVISIBLE AND FOREVER.””
Their society serves the WE and no other. What they do, what they think, what they say and see are all controlled. Everything is done for the hive, for the brotherhood of men (and women).
In their public schools they learn “We are nothing. Mankind is all. By the grace of our brothers are we allowed our lives. We exist through, by and for our brothers who are the State. Amen.”
God in this progressive society doesn’t give life and rights, the State does.
Achievement was seen as a sin, and was justly punished. Equality 7-2521 records that, “We, Equality 7-2521, were not happy in those years in the Home of the Students. It was not that the learning was too hard for us. It was that the learning was too easy. This is a great sin, to be born with a head which is too quick. It is not good to be different from our brothers, but it is evil to be superior to them. The Teachers told us so, and they frowned when they looked upon us.
“So we fought against this curse. We tried to forget our lessons, but we always remembered. We tried not to understand what the Teachers taught, but we always understood it before the Teachers had spoken. We looked upon Union 5-3992, who were a pale boy with only half a brain, and we tried to say and do as they did, that we might be like them, like Union 5-3992, but somehow the Teachers knew that we were not. And we were lashed more often than all the other children. “
In the end, everyone was required to be the level of Union 5-3992 who had only half a brain.
Your vocation would be chosen for you, and you would work that vocation for the rest of your work life or until you were 40. You could not be too good at your job unless you want to go to the Palace of Corrective Detention. If you were not suited for some vocation the Council of Vocations sent you to your death because your life goal is to serve society and not yourself. “And if you are not needed by your brother man, there is no reason for you to burden the earth with your bodies.” The Death Panel would deem you unworthy of life, and away you would go.
Consider the current direction of our Liberal leaders in Washington and compare their vision of societal equality and social justice to the visions in “Anthem” and ask yourself if this is the America you want.
Read Anthem online for free: http://www.pagebypagebooks.com/Ayn_Rand/Anthem/