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Only Obedience or the Beginings of a Cult? academic essay help Social Science

Only Obedience or the Beginnings of a Cult? In a magazine article titled Obedience to Authority, published in 1974 by Harper’s magazine, Dr. Stanley Milgram studied the effects of authority on “ordinary” people. His findings were astonishing. The obedience to authority figures, with no threat of repercussion, was not only underestimated, but unimaginable. The constant willingness to comply with what was asked of them reminded me of the cult led by Charles Manson, specifically the Sharon Tate murders. Dr. Stanley Milgram administered an experiment in which he took subjects and asked them to be the “teachers. Next, he hired actors, without telling the teachers, to be the students or learners. After watching the learner being strapped into place, the teacher was then seated before a shock generator. The generator panel consisted of thirty switches, labeled with voltages that ranged from 15 to 450 volts. Before the experiment was started the learner was given a “shock” of 45 volts, to strengthen the teacher’s belief in the genuineness of the generator. The teacher was then instructed to read a list of word pairs.

If the learner was not able to remember the second word of the word pair when the first was read, the teacher would then have to give the learner a shock. As the test progressed the shock values intensified. Before the experiment started, Dr. Stanley Milgram obtained predictions as to how far the teachers would go before disobeying the orders given to them in the beginning. The predictions were that virtually all subjects would refuse to obey the experimenter, especially when the voltage was at a high level. Those predictions were undeniably wrong.

When studies were done all over the world, 60%-85% of the time the teachers went all the way to 450 volts, even when the learners were screaming, thrashing in pain, and expressing concerns about having heart conditions. The chief finding of the experiments was established to be an “extreme willingness of adults to go to almost any lengths on the command of authority”, a fact that was particularly frightening. This finding makes explains how cults can be formed so easily. Once someone can establish themselves as an authority figure, it is easy to get others to do things for them.

Cult leaders have used this knowledge to get what they want. After hearing the Beatles song “Helter Skelter” in 1968, Manson, who had predicted an upcoming race war, believed this was the sign it was about to begin. “Manson believed the war was going to occur in the summer of 1969 when blacks were going to rise up and slaughter all the white people. The core of this philosophy was a kind of Armageddon. Charlie preached that the black man was going to rise up and start killing the whites and turn the cities into an inferno of racial revenge.

The black man would win this war, but wouldn’t be able to hang onto the power he seized because of innate inferiority. He told his followers that they would be saved because they would go underground, literally, by traveling to an underground city of gold located in Death Valley. Afterwards, when the black man failed at keeping power, Charlie’s Family, which they estimated would have multiplied to 144,000 by that time, would then take over from the black man and rule the cities. However, when the Armageddon that Manson had predicted did not occur, he said he and his followers must show the blacks how to do it. This is when he started ordering his follower to commit some of the most heinous murders in history. “Manson told four of his followers to go to 10050 Cielo Drive in Los Angeles and kill the people inside. ” On August 9, 1969, four of Manson’s followers brutally murdered Sharon Tate, her unborn baby, and four others who were visiting her; Steve Earl Parent, coffee heiress Abigail Folger, her lover Voytek Frykowski, and Jay Sebring, who was once engaged to Ms. Tate. These were not the only murders ordered by Manson.

Manson has bragged of being the mastermind behind more than thirty-five murders. The reason for the extreme violent nature of the murders was best described by Susan Atkins, one of the Manson Family members convicted for the murders. She said it was “because we wanted to do a crime that would shock the world, so that the world would have to stand up and take notice. ” Some might contend that the followers of Charles Manson, and other cult leaders, cannot be considered comparative to the “ordinary” people used in the Milgram study. I would refute that comparison.

Yes the followers of Charles Manson had many more emotional issues than the average person, however nothing but faith kept them willing to obey. Many of the followers were young women with troubled lives, rebelling against their parents and society. All of Charlie’s followers were weak willed people who were naive, gullible, and easy to lead. Manson also used LSD and amphetamines to alter his followers’ personalities. But still there were no payments made to them, in fact they lived mainly off the food they would steal from people or scavenge from grocery store trash bins.

The main difference I can see is that some of the teachers expressed remorse for their actions in the experiment, while most of the Manson Family murderers did not. In fact, Susan Atkins stated to her cell mate that,” she just looked at Sharon straight in the eye and said, “Look, bitch, I don’t care about you. I don’t care if you’re going to have a baby. You had better be ready. You’re going to die and I don’t feel anything about it…. In a few minutes I killed her. ”” She proceeded to brag that when she saw Sharon’s blood on her hand she tasted it and her reaction was, “Wow what a trip!

To taste death, and yet give life. ” What she meant by giving life is a mystery, but can probably be chalked up to all the drugs Manson had been giving his followers to keep them open minded and easily controllable. It could also pertain to the new life she was giving to the race war that was hopefully being started. The followers of Charles Manson could be considered to have “just been following orders”, although no one ever used that defense. In fact, during the trial the defense just rested, never calling anyone to the stand or cross examining any witnesses.

The followers were so brain washed that the defense was afraid that they would hurt their cases rather than help it. They thought that by obeying, and even killing and dying for him, they would have eternal salvation. That obedience ultimately led to their demise. The modern definition of a cult is any group which employs mind control and deceptive recruiting techniques. Although Dr. Stanley Milgram did not go to these extremes, the effect seen from his experiment on how adults will obey authority figures could inadvertently be a slight form of mind control.

In the experiment, when authority figures fought in the presence of the teachers, the teachers were less likely to follow the instructions. When the authority figures phoned in the commands, the results were also that many teachers dropped out of the research experience. This proves that if there is a strong presence in the room, people are more likely to follow the orders presented to them. This would explain why many cult leaders are always in the mix of the group. Cults, to some, especially the lonely and weak minded, may seem wonderful on the outside, but on the inside are very manipulative.

Cult leaders are after the obedience of a group. Many cult leaders in the past century have convinced followers to obey them, most resulting in murders, or murder-suicides. Some of the most notorious have been Stewart Traill who started the Church of Bible Understanding (formerly known as the Forever Family) in 1971, Jim Jones the leader of Jonestown in 1978, David Koresh the founder of the Branch Davidians in 1993, and Adolf Hitler who lead the Nazi party during the holocaust.

Obedience to authority needs to be a fine balance. Children growing up are always told to obey their parents, grandparents, daycare workers, and teachers. As teenagers we are taught to choose our friends wisely and not fall in with the “wrong crowd. ” As adults we are expected to obey our bosses and make right decisions that we will not be ashamed of. When dealing with authority, our morals need to lead the way and not the little voice of long ago telling us to follow without thinking it through first.

Nutrients and Metabolism

Nutrients and Metabolism.

Discussion Questions Description Discussion 1: Chapter 8 Nutrients and Metabolism How does the body regulate energy metabolism? Watch the video’s and respond to the question in at least 200 words. Discussion 2: Chapter 8 Nutrients and Antioxidants What are antioxidants, and how do they protect our cells? Watch the video and respond to the question in at least 200 words. Discussion 3: Chapter 8 Nutrients and Vitamin A What is the role of vitamin A in vision and other functions? Watch the video and respond to the question in at least 200 words.

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