“Survival of the fittest” is a common Darwinian expression thrown around groups in order to account for group dynamics. This concept bespeaks the survival of the strongest and most adaptable of the species, while the weaker and frailer individuals are excluded, shunned and starved out.
High school dynamics. High schools throughout history and today all employ the same dynamic to weed out the “lame and weak” from the flock. Jocks and cheer leaders are at the top of the pyramid because they are the best looking, the most physically athletic and the most socially adept. If they are two of these things, but not the third, they might be a lower-level jock or second-string cheer leader, but the likelihood is that they will not make the cut at all. All three aspects much be attained in order to achieve popularity and success within the system.
The Filler, rejects and nerds. Next, we have the “ordinary” kids, the ones who look good, behave appropriate to the Darwinist system at least 70% of the time, and tend to all dress alike. These kids make up the “filler” of the high school system. Next, we have the rejects. They are the bad boys and girls, typically wear black, shun life and joy, and draw their strength from the fears and doubts of others. This group necessarily must be a limited group, or it would not fall into the reject category, nobody would be afraid of or intimidated by them, and its very function would be overruled. For this reason, members of this group typically test outsiders to determine resiliency, loyalty and depths to which they will sink. If outsiders do not match up, they are sent on to other groups. After this, we have the nerds and there is no limit on the size of this group. Because these are the smarter kids and the group size may increase, they must necessarily be kept in check. The social elite, as in the jocks and cheer leader types, keep these kids in check by dishing out small popularity favors in return for homework or other servant-like duties. In truth, many members of the social elite make straight A’s on their own. It is considered a role of being elite to perform “public duties” such as keeping the nerds in their place and from rising in the hierarchy.
The outsiders. Last, we have the outsiders, solo individuals who cannot or will not fit into any of the above-mentioned groups. Typically, these kids have low self esteem, are poor or they have completely inadequate social skills. They feel that these aspects keep them from having friends, and no one in high school will disagree with their logic if they feel that strongly about it. In other words, it is their own mindset which debilitates them, not their circumstances.
High school is very Darwinian. It is cruel, ruthless and employs some pretty extreme measures of hazing. However, these methods are there for a reason. Not only do they teach kids about life before they are dumped out into the real world, but it teaches them strength, resiliency and how to work the system. It teaches them that it is possible to change your position in the hierarchy, but that you must grow first in order to do so.