John Stuart Mill - Essay Example

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Name: Instructor: Task: Date: John Stuart Mill In any civilized society, there are basic parameters that guide its citizenry in their daily duties. Similarly, these duties are guided by the need to achieve certain objectives and goals of life, such as proper education and good health…
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Download file to see previous pages Furthermore, the paper takes note on case studies, such as the Hudnut Pornography Case and its interpretation by Mills. Concerning Mill’s On Liberty, we have two distinct interpretations of matters related to liberty and freedom. There is harm’s principle and how the citizens perceive it in the view of the government. According to Stuart, the harm’s principle state that a person may be prevented from transferring harm to others to avoid any disagreements. Therefore, we will begin by evaluating the issue of freedom and liberty from the Mill’s perspective. In any civilized society, Mill suggests in On Liberty that there must be a government body that ensures its people is controlled in a systematic way. This is through proper exercising of freedom and upholding of the rule of law (Mill 23). As argued by Mill in his book, the government must act in an autonomous manner, to avoid being influenced by majority opinions to ensure that the system of governance runs. Similarly, when the government is in control, it is able to ensure that it represents every voice of the citizenry. This means that the minority groups that are not influenced by selfish ambitions and personal convictions who do not speak are equally represented, in the matrix of national cohesion. Additionally, the control of the government symbolize a state of control where cases of unrests, protests and demonstrations that are characterized by the discontented lot of the majority. However, as posited by Mill in Utilitarianism, it is upon every ordinary citizen to derive his happiness from the circumstances presented by his government (Mill 12). This means the citizen should obey the law, pay taxes, remain patriotic and respect other fellow citizens. Alternatively, this does not mean the government has the force upon the citizenry in any conventional way of conducting their duties. Furthermore, the government is mandated to allow citizens to enjoy their fundamental rights and freedoms as a way of upholding the rule of law. On that account, according to Mill, even if citizens follow the stipulated the laws, the government should use democratic methods that uphold citizen liberty. In other words, citizens should be allowed to make their choices in whatever they do as long they do not fringe on the freedoms of others. Similarly, Mill supports this fact in Utilitarianism where he encourages the freedoms of choosing one’s form of happiness as long as it is of no damage to other parties or individuals (Winston and Edelbach 154). Alternatively, the government should allow citizens to experiment with any form of lifestyle in attaining their goals and objectives of life for the betterment of the general society. However, again Mill warns in On Liberty that the government and even society have a crucial role to use coercive force in case a citizen violates the limits of his freedom. This brings us to issue of public opinion and the obligation of the government to censor distracters, such as the opposition, which sometimes wastes time debating trivial matters at the expense of the economic development. Mill argues in On Liberty that the government has the supreme authority to ignore such voices or even apply a form of punishment to act as a deterrent for others who may have such sinister intentions (Bowie and Simon 60). Similarly, the government, while ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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