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Why is freedom important - Essay Example

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We have always lived our lives free of encumbrances and blocks as human beings. We are afforded freedoms that are not bestowed upon other beings on this planet because we have the uncanny ability to judge right from wrong, the good from the bad…
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Why is freedom important
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Download file to see previous pages Society has lived this way for eons and, although there have been efforts from certain sectors to try to curb these logical and natural freedoms, we have always lived our lives free of any constraints. Unfortunately, we oftentimes fail to acknowledge this fact which is why we end up taking the freedoms that we have in our lives for granted. While other countries struggle for a semblance of democracy and their people are crying out for freedom, we simply go about our free lives without a worry or care in the world. That is why there is a need for us, as a collective society, to come to an understanding as to what the true meaning of freedom is and why it is important to all of us. It is perhaps best to begin the discussion of the importance of freedom on the basis of the Harm Principle. According to Oliviera (2006), under this principle, the actions of individuals should only be limited once it is proven that the person will cause great harm to those around him. This is the basis of the laws that govern our land. I cannot stress the importance of the Harm Principle in our daily lives for this is the principle upon which all our other freedoms are based upon. I do not doubt that this is also the principle upon which arrest and imprisonment of people doing harm to others comes from. After all, if you cause harm to another human being, you end up in jail. That is what the Harm Principle is all about and that is why it is the most important basis of our most basic freedoms in our society today. The Harm Principle presents us with a maxim that has allowed people to develop their sense of freedom in a responsible manner. This is known as the Liberty Principle which, allows people to develop their individuality through freedom of choice. By allowing people to have options in life, a person is forced to view the pros and cons of his possible decisions and then go with the decision that he feels will best serve his individual identity. He has the freedom to choose from any number of outcomes, hence the Liberty Decision. He makes his decision free of guilt and responsibility to others. His sole responsibility in this respect, it only to himself thus making his decision absolute. Without the Harm Principle to consider, we would not have encountered the need for positive and negative liberty among our people. Carter (2011) thoroughly explains that the Harm principle is possibly what gave way to the emergence of the positive and negative liberties of man. Simply put, the negative liberty is one that offers no obstacles to living a life secure in the freedom that he is experiencing. It was Isaiah Berlin (Carter, 2011) who explained that negative freedom is simply the absence of obstacles in life that prevent one from living life. Negative freedom is a sense of liberty that we all experience if there are no external interferences from groups that could hamper our freedom of movement and choice. Whereas positive freedom is one that exists due to need to control a certain situation or event due to the internal factors being the basis for individuals and groups to act independently of each other. Having said that, it seems only logical, after having developed an understanding of the importance behind positive and negative liberty, we come to a discussion Rousseau's Theory of freedom. As per Simpson's (2006), understanding of Rousseau's Theory of Freedom, there are actually 4 kinds of freedom that should be deemed relevant to politics. These freedoms are: 1. Natural freedom 2. civil freedom, democratic freedom, 3. moral freedom. This is supposed to be the social contract that supposedly binds us all to humanly treating each other regardless of personal sentiment. It is believed that the aforementioned freedoms are the basis that we as a people use to ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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