Doing the Right Thing Means Ignoring Detraction, Cont.

In an earlier post, I asserted that doing the right thing usually requires ignoring detractors. Well, in many cases, it requires even bolder defiance, as was the case for the first racially integrated college basketball team in Mississippi:

“There’s an unwritten law that no college from Mississippi can play against blacks,” he says. “It was crazy stuff. If you play against them, they’re going to want to play on your team. If they play on your team, they want to dance with your girls. If they dance with your girls, they’re going to marry your girls.”


But Mississippi State played anyway, defying a court order to stop them from segregationist Gov. Ross Barnett.

This is just to make the point that it’s not just generically hard to do the right thing. Doing the right thing is often socially arduous because it’s the opposite of what many people aggressively declare to be the right thing. I think we tend to underappreciate how hard our society rides the intrepid few who will later (sometimes obviously) be vindicated by history. 

H/T Humanity, I Love You., which is an excellent blog run by a fellow Marine at Columbia University.

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