The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas
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The utopian society of the Omelas is a serene place, a city full of beauty and happiness and delight with cultured and smart inhabitants. The city is bright-towered by sea, there is the great water meadow and Green fields, The people harmoniously mingle irrespective of their age, children run naked in the bright air, the horses have no gears and have braided manes and silver, green and gold steamers. However, underlying this beauty is a secret that makes some of the inhabitants move away after they get wind of this unpleasant secret.
This shows that there is conflict between the individual and society since the people who move away feel cheated to a point of no return.
A child is put under is deplorable conditions of darkness and misery so that the good fortunes and merry making of the Omelas can prevail. This is done in the ignorance of the people. The society has engaged in a shameful act against an individual, an innocent in order to enjoy while the poor one suffers. This is typical of many a society who take advantage of the innocent through exploitation and greed (Ursula, 24).
The people of Omelas are shocked and sickened when they are exposed to the truth but later appreciate the fact that the poor soul has to suffer so their own good. Some few citizens however move away silently from the city at the end of the story to an unknown location. These are indeed the people who walk away from the Omelas and are a true reflection to the conflict between individual and society.
The discovery of the secret changes the perception about the society. The pristine beauty is only on the surface but deep within is an imaginable filth. The society hides the evils from the people who are depicted as ignorant and callous people since many of them justify the treatment of the child for their selfish interest. The child is a scapegoat, an offering for the well being of this unfair society (Hoff et al, 154).
Happiness can never be achieved at the expense of an individual who bears pain for a fault not of their creation. This is seen by the action of some of the inhabitants who feel unhappy and decide to walk away from this wicked place disguised as haven of peace and serenity. Their simple gesture reaffirms that when one person in the society suffers, all the people suffer!
I would make sure that the child is removed from the sorry conditions and receive proper treatment just like the other Omelas even if it meant the beauty and peace is no more because already the peace is disturbed in real sense by one crying soul