“The life where nothing was ever unexpected. Or inconvenient. Or unusual. The life without color, pain, or past.”Lois Lowry
According to Google, a utopia is” an imagined place or state of things in which everything is perfect.” That means that to every single person in a society is happy and there are no troubles. However, that is impossible, since everybody’s definition of happiness and perfection differ greatly. Also, if a society tried to fix its mistakes in order to become utopian, then they could cause more problems, which could become a never-ending cycle. Overall, a utopia cannot exist.
In the novel Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, the author introduces a society that was “utopian,” but ultimately became dystopian. The people in this society have lost depth and the ability to truly think, instead being sucked into their bright screens and fake, flashy realities. The TV shows they watch become all they ever obsess about, not about the real people or experiences in their own lives. For example, Mildred calls the people in her shows, “her family,” and yet cannot even remember the place where she first met Montag, her own husband. Furthermore, what caused everyone to be like this, is the burning of books. Without books, people can’t explore deeper and more meaningful concepts. They aren’t comfortable with unfamiliar ideas or any sort of question that forces them to think, and in an effort to distract themselves from it, they let themselves be absorbed by digital media or simply ending their lives. “Whirl man’s mind around about so fast under the pumping hands of publishers, exploiters, broadcasters that the centrifuge flings off all unnecessary, time-wasting thought!(59)” Their values have become so twisted and inhumane that it is normal for children kill each other and suicides occur everyday. Life is tossed around played with like it’s a game, and no one cares who dies. Overall, people in this society have lost communication, depth, individuality, and no longer have moral values; in essence, they have lost what made them “human.”
In modern society, it is no question that utopia does not exist. Our world is nothing close to perfection, drowning with problems on a world-wide scale, such as homelessness, global warming, pollution, unemployment, racism, and violence. Some of these conflicts have remained unsolved for hundreds, even thousands of years. And yet, these problems are only the major issues. There are still thousands of other, smaller obstacles we have yet to overcome Also, our world is becoming more and more similar to Fahrenheit 451’s society. Most of us would rather play video games than take a stroll outside, and not just notice, but truly appreciate the little things, like stopping to smell the roses. As Clarisse(from Fahrenheit 451) once said, “I sometimes think drivers don’t know what grass is, or flowers, because they never see them slowly…(13)” We are starting to depend on technology more, and our want for it makes us feel like it is a need. More people talk over the phone or text each other than actually talking in person, which, in actuality, is distancing ourselves instead of bringing us closer together. Social media becomes a platform where one can say anything, all the while suffering no physical consequence since their identity is hidden by a screen. Sometimes people become so obsessed with their comments and likes on their posts that they can sacrifice their health, and even their lives. To add on, people argue over the smallest things and oftentimes don’t think of the consequences of their actions. When someone gets hurt, people just pass on the blame to others, instead of trying to do something helpful or positive. All in all, modern society is not a utopia because of the many problems we have yet to solve.
A utopia is not attainable and never will be. This is because in order for a society to be a utopia, every person must be satisfied and happy, and there is no way to fill the needs and wants of every individual without interference from another individual’s wishes or sacrifice. If you ask what “perfection” is to a hundred different people, you would receive a hundred different responses. For instance, in Harrison Bergeron, by Kut Vonnegut Jr, everyone is equal in terms of physical strength, intelligence, talent, and looks. But by striving for equality, people have lost individuality and the freedom of doing what one is passionate about. By fixing the problem of everyone being equal, it caused even more problems in the society, and it became dystopian. Secondly, some will not want a utopia because of their own selfish nature. As Gandhi once said, “Earth provides enough to satisfy everyone’s need, but not every man’s greed.” Some people are fine with knowing that while they are content, people out there are suffering. They will not want to give up a portion of their wealth or pleasure just so someone else can have those luxuries too. Because of each individual’s perspective on perfection and by man’s greedy nature, there is no way to create a perfect utopia.
In conclusion, a utopian society isn’t achievable, and is unrealistic to aim for. In Fahrenheit 451 and in our current society, along with many other examples, a utopian cannot exist because of what people consider to be “perfection,” humanity’s own greed, and the sacrifice of something else. What people should strive for instead is to be the best they can be to themselves and others around them, and to fix their own problems before moving on to others.
End Note: Two great books that revolve around the idea of a utopian society in clude; The Giver and Fahrenheit 451(the one I have used for my examples). If you have not read these books already, I highly encourage you to!