“No one likes to be pushed around, but people often put up with it for too long. So, I get them to see their resentment, first, as anger, and then as an indication that something needs to be said, if not done (not least because honesty demands it). Then I get them to see such action as part of the force that holds tyranny at bay–at the social level, as much as the individual. Many bureaucracies have petty authoritarians within them, generating unnecessary rules and procedures simply to express and cement power. Such people produce powerful undercurrents of resentment around them which, if expressed, would limit their expression of pathological power. It is in this manner that the willingness of the individual to stand up for him or herself protects everyone from the corruption of society.”— Jordan B. Peterson, 12 Rules for Life
The two words that stand out to me in the above quote are “if expressed”. This hit home for me when I read it today. I understand that books don’t just speak to me. That they are written for people like me. And there are so many of us out there. Dr. Peterson reminded me that even though there are much larger, consequential things that are seemingly out of my control, the smaller daily interactions in my life are still important and continue to keep tyranny at bay.