While the social norms serve some positive purposes, all of them may not be judicious or fair. Every individual has the right and opportunity to use their critical faculty to issues, but many could see the concept of critical thinking only in negative terms. However, critical thinking provides space for improvement and enables individuals to change. If people realize this, they will be able to take every issue seriously and approach them with a critical bend of mind. Things could be made better only if the available choices are gauged the basis of their necessity and capability to bring positive change, rather than following the individuals customs in all events.
People fail to think critically because they are preoccupied with the concepts of safety and stability in the society they live in. They are afraid of approaching an issue differently in the personal or social sphere because they take the demand for change as an affront to their identity as part of their society. However, it is possible to keep a healthy rapport with the society in which every forms an integral part and at the same time approach situations critically, amassing as much information as available to meet the need of the hour.
A few years ago, I was faced with a situation where I had to utilize critical think. While I was traveling on a bus, someone complained that his wallet was missing and that he thought someone had stolen it while he got on the bus. Among the few people who got change the bus with him was an immigrant teenager. It turned out that could not speak English effectively and when he was questioned, he panicked.
Everyone assumed that he was the one who stole the man’ s wallet and they started to rough him up. I felt that this was a sheer injustice to the boy since he was not even given a chance to prove his innocence. But I knew that the majority of the travelers were inclined to punish the boy to the extent that he would produce the stolen wallet. The situation got so worse that I had no choice to intervene.
I raised my voice and tried to dissuade those who were assaulting the boy.
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