The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas
We live in a world much like Omelas. Although we do not torture children, many people suffer so we can live as well as we do. Most chain stores mass-produce their products in factories overseas. These factories are mainly in China and other developing countries that do not have safety and minimum wage laws. Their workers are in dangerous conditions all day and usually get paid less than we would for an hour. However, because of how little the factory workers get paid, we are able to buy the products we want at the cheapest prices.
In The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas Le Guin says, “They know that they, like the child, are not free” (235). She is explaining that they have no choice but to be happy, they are expected to be happy because the child is suffering for them. The people of the US, on some level, are expected to be a happy people. We are one of the wealthiest nations in the world, and most Americans are spoiled. We take from poorer countries in order to pay less for what we want. Other countries suffer so we may live in luxury. Because of how we live, and what we have, we should always be happy. Being happy is not something that a person can be forced into. Although is seems on the surface that the people of Omelas are happy, how can they truly be happy if they are only happy out of obligation?
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