Scapegoating: A Societal demand, or simply a way to escape the blame of societal problems?


Similar to craters on the moon, society is impressed by ancient traditions, which can remain undisturbed and survive for generations to come. These traditions define the way of life in society, and create the building blocks for the actions of those who inhabit the society. A significant element within the foundation of countless societies is the use of a scapegoat. A scapegoat is defined as a person or group made to bear the blame for others or to suffer in their place. While analyzing specific instances in history where scapegoats are a key component in a society, I concluded that societies depend on scapegoat, because the society is unable to harbor blame. Therefore, I believe that societies can function without a scapegoat; however they believe they cannot be a successful society without a scapegoat.
external image scapegoat.jpg

I believe that he following lyrics, from Tracy Chapman's song "Across the Lines," illuminates the use of scapegoats in American society and the pain it causes.

Across the Lines
By Tracy Chapman

Across the lines
Who would dare to go
Under the bridge
Over the tracks
That separates whites from blacks

Choose sides
run for your lives
Tonight the riots begin
On the back streets of america
They kill the dream of america

Little black girl gets assaulted
Ain’t no reason why
Newspaper prints the story
And racist tempers fly
Next day it starts a riot
Knives and guns are drawn
Two black boys get killed
One white boy goes blind

Across the lines
Who would dare to go
Under the bridge
Over the tracks
That separates whites from blacks

Choose sides
run for your lives
Tonight the riots begin
On the back streets of america
They kill the dream of america

Little black girl gets assaulted
Don’t no one know her name
Lots of people hurt and angry
She’s the one to blame

Across the lines
Who would dare to go
Under the bridge
Over the tracks
That separates whites from blacks

Choose sides
run for your lives
Tonight the riots begin
On the back streets of america
They kill the dream of america