GRE Issue Essay 150

“People today are too individualistic. Instead of pursuing self-centered, separate goals, people need to understand that satisfaction comes from working for the greater good of the family, the community, or society as a whole.”

The common man today has completely forgotten his commitments towards the society he lives in. Owing to the tough competition for survival, man is more concerned about his own well being. Everyone has set a goal for himself and he tries his level best to achieve that goal by putting in his best efforts. Even if one does achieve his goal, it is unlikely that he will be satisfied with what he has achieved. He will probably set a new goal for himself and put in all possible efforts to attain the new goal that he has set for himself. In this mad race for success, the welfare of one’s family and society are completely forgotten. Hence, there is an urgent requirement of making people understand that true satisfaction can come only from working for the good of the family and the society rather than by pursuing individual goals.

If one of the children of a small family is getting a good job in a city that is far away from home, he will probably not give a second thought to his parents or younger siblings who would be left at home. If he is successful in his career, he will probably never give up his career to come and stay with his parents. On the other hand, he will try his level best to convince his parents that uprooting themselves from their hometown to come and live with him would be a wise decision. Hence, it can be seen that people are willing to travel to different cities in pursuit of their goals with total disregard to their parents or other dependants who are left behind at home.

The same holds true for the attitude of people with respect to their society also. Take the example of a bright student from a poor third world country who immigrates to the US in pursuit of higher studies. If he does well in his professional course, he will be more interested in settling in the US and using his talents for doing well in his career. It is highly unlikely that he would like to fall back to his own country and utilize his competence and talent for the betterment of the society where he had been born and brought up. This is evident from the huge surge in the number of students from third world countries who are preparing for exams like GMAT, GRE, LSAT, MACT etc. so that they can study in the US and probably settle there only. This ‘brain drain’ has become a cause of worry for some of the third world countries who are facing an acute shortage of professionally qualified people.

Therefore, the immediate requirement is that people be taught to place their families and society above their personal gains. This is absolutely essential for the betterment of the society as a whole. How can a society progress if its people are busy pursuing their individual goals with total disregard to the harm that it may bring to the entire society? There was a huge hue and cry over the use of pesticides in some of the popular cola drinks. Why had the companies not disclosed this to the public when their drinks were launched initially? This fact came out in the open after some tests were conducted on the soft drink samples. Did the cola manufacturing companies stop their production in view of the threat to the health of the public? On the contrary, the companies went all out to prove that the percentage of pesticides in the ingredients of the drinks were negligible.

Are we as individuals concerned about the depletion of the ozone layer? What are we doing to ensure that the society benefits from our contributions to saving the ecological balance of the earth? Are we careful about not using plastic as it is non-degradable? People are careful about not using plastic bags only if their use has been debarred by the local authorities. All these facts prove that people are no longer concerned about the well-being of either their families or their society. All that they are concerned about is the pursuit of their individual goals. Therefore, there is a requirement of encouraging individuals to work for the interests of the society, thereby making the world a much better place to live in.