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There are inherent gains under a fascist system but they come at a terrible expense. Mr. Ross has his kids operating as he wishes. Some students thrive under the very rigid system. They do their homework, observe what they are told, and stay out of trouble. Robert Billings is the “class loser,” in the shadow of his more successful brother Jeff Billings who majors in medicine while playing Minor League Baseball. All of a sudden, he finds meaning in his life under Mr. Ross.
The Students however lose much more. Mr. Ross defines them under his new system so they stop trying to define themselves. High school is a time of self-discovery. People who are not part of the wave are bullied and forced to conform. Freedom is taken away and students walk around the school rather mindless of individual thought, emotion and expression.