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The Student News Site of Coral Glades High School

The Prowl

The Student News Site of Coral Glades High School

The Prowl

Has Human Nature Changed?

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Over thousands of years, people and humanity in societies and cultures have drastically changed. Yet one question remains: Have the core tendencies and values of what makes a human changed?

Now what do I mean by that? Essentially, I’m asking what makes mankind tick and has it changed. It’s a two-part question and to find out the first part, we must find out what humanity means.

If you want a literal definition, then “The Human Race” according to Oxford Languages is what humanity means, but a more complicated answer would be humans having complex emotions, values, and actions.

If we go with the latter definition, this would give a plethora of examples that say human nature has and hasn’t changed.

To start, let us take a look at the earliest humans. According to History.com, the earliest humans were hunter-gatherers, being in small yet social communities. That changed with the invention of agriculture. Now that people weren’t hunting as much anymore, they were staying in larger communities to grow more food.

This then attracts more people, which means commerce is born and there needs to be laws, so the government is born and as such, society is born. This mainly was around river valleys, for example, China’s Yangtze and Yellow Rivers.

Yet during these times, there were things like widespread violence, slavery, polygamy, paganism/mythical religions. This set the standard of Human nature as really a free-for-all all, and what humanity lacked was empathy for those that were different.

Next, there was Rome, a modernized nation. Although today it’s seen as ancient, there comes a time in history when everything just stops advancing and slows down as it’s seen as the furthest they could go. This was Rome, the pinnacle of the old ways of life.

Then along came Jesus. Christianity flipped everything on its head as Jesus and his disciples would spread the Christian message, that being one of love and acceptance of your fellow man.

You can have your opinions on Christianity, but one can’t deny its impact on the world. To start off, Christians were persecuted by Emperors like Nero, an infamously evil and disgusting Emperor, but it was accepted by Emperor Constantine for Romans to practice. 

This allowed the ball to roll as Christianity had a bunch of foreign concepts like idealizing monogamy (marriage between a man and a woman), charity for the poor, scientific discoveries, and equality/respect for all mankind.

So history shows that human nature does change and it can change drastically. In today’s world, we’re often compared to Rome, but instead of religion gaining popularity to replace older religions, political ideologies are gaining popularity in place of religion.

Take this for example, people’s concerns can mirror or rhyme with those of the past. As I said before, we’re compared to Rome, everything is becoming more expensive, and people are finding it harder to get by.

Society has gone crazy as a culture war has begun, just like in Rome, so this brings up the question, does history repeat itself? If so then human nature repeats itself. To find out more, I asked two people for their take. I asked the question, “Does Human Nature Change?”

Mr. Horner, who teaches -, said “No, it really hasn’t. What I think has changed are some of the morals and norms of society. What we thought was normal in the past would be very different today, but people care about the same things like food, family, and shelter.”

Mrs. Lehrman, who teaches U.S. History, had a different opinion., “I feel that previously in older generations, we looked upon our teachers and our elders with respect and valued their opinions, but today I feel that most youths feel that respect needs to be earned before they give it so there’s no natural respect. This can be problematic because it makes people feel like they’re not valued, but it can also be good because it makes people learn that respect is something that needs to be earned.” 

In conclusion, human nature does not change in some aspects, for example, we all need friends, food, and a place to sleep. We’re social animals, it’s why solitary confinement exists, it’s a punishment and it’s considered cruel. Yet in other aspects human nature changes, especially morality, that changes constantly.

So these are two sides of the same coin, some things constantly change and some things refuse to change. Now if that’s the case, there is one last question you must answer. Regardless of whether humanity changes or not, I ask you this. Should human nature change?

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About the Contributor
  • Name: Robert Iannacone
  • Grade: 10
  • School Club/Sports involvement: Debate and Journalism
  • Fun Fact: I like politics

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