What is the moral lesson of the story "The Lottery"?

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The primary message of Shirley Jackson's celebrated short story "The Lottery" concerns the dangers of blindly following traditions. In the story, the entire community gathers in the town square to participate in the annual lottery. During the lottery, the head of each household draws a slip of paper from the ominous black box. The family members of the person who draws the slip of paper with the black spot on it must each draw from the black box. The unlucky family member who draws the black spot is brutally stoned to death by their family, friends, and neighbors.

The community forgets many aspects of the lottery's ritual, and the violent ceremony has superstitious origins which associate the sacrifice of an innocent citizen to an increase in the harvest yield. The community continues to participate in the senseless violent ritual simply because they have always held the lottery. Ignorant traditionalists like Old Man Warner support the ritual and believe that the community would descend...

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