You can assume that every person integrates both passive and active tendencies into his life and is a follower in one moment and a resistor in the other. A uniformed behavior, as shown in the film, is an extraordinary event, which is a mass phenomenon that occurs occasionally when the transmission from one to many succeeds. But as soon as a person has removed himself from this situation and comes back into contact with himself or is exposed to other influences, he will behave differently than at the moment when he is part of a large group.
So people exhibit varying degrees of conformity or grayness. I can definitely agree with that. Ironically not everything is black and white, but shades of grey lol.
But if you assume that people always behave the same way as the grey men in the film, you degrade them, condemn them to inhuman beings. Not only is it unhelpful to look at people in such a way, it is even damaging and maintains a picture that has no reason for hope or cooperation. It only leads to a brief elevation of your ego to classify you as better or more intelligent. For this ego to permanently feel better, it needs to repeat this view because the satisfaction of feeling superior to others lasts only very briefly and requires continuous repetition. In doing so, you contribute to the deterioration of interpersonal relationships and simply gather yes-men around you who want to feel part of an in-group and inevitably need an out-group for contrast. In doing so, you're basically imitating exactly what you're condemning.
Again, we go back to the question of what does it mean to be a human being. What does it mean to be treated like one? Is this a question that can only be answered from a purely physical perspective? If so, isn't that also dehumanizing? I would like to believe that humans are more than just base animals.
Now I have no ego and I do not look down on people who conform. Like you said before, we all have our moments. But to me it doesn't make it any less of a problem. Ideally, in order to engage in healthy and productive discourse, we must respect the opinions of others, which is something that grey beings do not do.
You learn a lot through a contradiction in an exchange with others.
Very true. Having an exchange of different opinions can strengthen our beliefs or even change them. We discover more about ourselves when we communicate with others.
So my question to you would be: In which situations have you been an opportunist yourself or have you been silent, touching you unpleasantly and making you difficult to get over? And in which you haven't and it was taken positively? I do not ask this question because I expect an answer here in public, but only because I wish myself to be pointed to my own blind spots when I reveal them.
I used to be picky about when I decide to be an opportunist and when I decide to be "grey". I think this was mostly due to a lack of knowledge. If I didn't fully understand the consequences of my actions, then I wouldn't take the risk. Over time however, I realized that time is an invaluable resource, and I no longer have the time to calculate every single risk with my actions; as I get older, being an opportunist or being "grey" was no longer a choice, but a way of life.