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“People or Sheeple?” ponders Cherise Osaki ~ a Grade 12 student from Shanghai American School

In this video, Cherise Osaki, a Grade 12 International Relations Student from Shanghai American School, reflects on what she learned about her classmates – and people in general – from her experience as a citizen in her Civic Mirror country “Pangea,” a tumultuous nation that almost slipped into dictatorship.

People or Sheeple?

Written By Cherise Osaki: You wouldn’t think that people who know what is right could be so easily swayed by others. But they are. You wouldn’t think that students in a private international school with set hidden agendas and full awareness of what their set goals are to achieve could be so easily manipulated into what somewhat with a disreputable past says. But we are.

Third year in Pangaea, and it is time to vote. We have a president who has never let us down, has always been true to her word, and has been consistent with her plans for the future running for reelection. Then we had another candidate who had been sued for questionable motives and morals every year since the Civic Mirror began in our class and always seemed to find ways around the law and around contracts. Shouldn’t the old proverb “once burned twice shy” apply? Apparently not.

After a surprising tie result and a tiebreaker vote, we were even more surprised to see that our former president was defeated by one vote. The elections were not rigged, the results were legitimate. A frustrated few remained loyal to the tactics which had made Pangaea prosperous, but a surprising number had been convinced of the new president. As should have been expected, the country fell into turmoil, and in the end the only way out was a crisis vote (a vote that simulates a violent revolution to quickly resolve a political stalemate, resulting in random deaths of Civic Mirror family members). After all was said and done, there were sixteen deaths.

It should have been obvious, why had people been so easily swayed? In the end, it is surprising. Very few will stand by morals in the end, as everyone’s primary concern is living comfortably in the moment. Even people who should know better don’t. We have all learned now, as we should, to question everything and consider the future and past for every present circumstance. Will this lesson be lasting, or will history repeat itself?

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