Blind Obedience

People in general are more willing to agree to requests from people who are in authority i.e. from higher ranking people within an organisation. Obedience occurs when people obey commands/orders from others to do something. (Military Officers shout commands that they expect to be followed without question)

Obedience can be a very good positive aspect of everyday life, especially within the Public Services. However there can also be tragic consequences of Obedience if it used in the wrong way. One of the most horrific forms of Obedience that can occur if Obedience is abused is Blind Obedience.

Some Examples of Blind Obedience.

The Holocaust : Blind Obedience carried to the extreme, during World War II , the Nazis established death camps where soldiers and even prisoners obeyed commands to systematically murder millions of innocent victims.

Tiananmen Square , China 1989 : The willingness of Chinese troops to fire on unarmed civilians during a peaceful demonstration.


Why Do People Blindly Obey ?

1. People in authority who issue the orders take away the responsibility from those who obey. i.e. The person who obeyed would probably say 'I was only Carrying Out Orders'

2. People in Authority often possess visible badges or signs of their superiority. These consist of special uniforms and Titles. Faced with such obvious reminders of who's in charge, most people find it difficult to resist obeying.


In many situations involving Blind Obedience events tend to happen very quickly : demonstrations turn into riots, or arrests turn into mass beatings or murder. The fast pace of such events gives people little time for reflection, people are ordered to obey and almost automatically they do.


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