My Views Anf Support For Social Liberalism

If one asks an oppressed person what he or she needs they would say one thing: “freedom”. Freedom varies from country to country but in most forms of government it is exercised, sometimes it has limits but it can be apparent that individuals want to have hold of their own fate. Classical liberalism values individuals rights and freedoms, limits government power, and supports a capitalistic system. I agree with John Locke's social contract and natural laws such as life, liberty, and property. I would say I fall under a left leaning social liberal that believes in utilitarianism and a few of John Locke's ideas. I relate to these these fundamentals because it gives individuals the opportunity to grow and live prosperous lives.

Classical Liberalism really speaks to me because I believe people should have a say in how they want to live their lives and the laws that govern them. It emphasizes the rights of individuals and a democracy so that people have a say in government matters and the economy. Social atomism is an important idea because it states: you are born as an individual first and then will make society, stresses power over oneself, and rights. In social atomism the primary goal in society is freedom, it also supports capitalism along with a democratic government. As an individual that strongly supports rights I believe in social atomism because in order to live a life that promotes the common well-being as a whole, everyone needs to work their hardest to make their lives as enjoyable as possible. Although social atomism states freedom is the main goal, I also think certain laws are formed to protect people from harming one another and abusing the freedoms that are granted. With no laws the world would be full of chaos. Laws are there to protect rights, property, and the common well-being and to an extent these regulations do stunt total freedom but as long as no one is being oppressed it should be allowed.

I also strongly support being born as an individual first and then making society because I believe you make your own choices. Sometimes you have to make decisions that might create conflict with the family but no one should feel they have to obey everything one is told. If you are born poor you should not have to stay poor just because your family cannot give you good education, you work hard to get yourself out of poverty and make someone out of yourself. Social atomism advocates following dreams and being free. Utilitarianism is the idea that a choice should be determined by the happiness or pleasure it brings among the people. It is the greatest happiness for the greatest number of individuals. Meaning that if each day we enforced this thought process we would live a life that serves to make everyone feel happy and it would make us less selfish. Many of the issues we face today such as poverty, discrimination, and environmental destruction would be alleviated or eliminated.

Furthermore, John Stuart Mill proposed The harm principle, which states people should only be punished if they are causing harm to others and that people have total control over themselves. He also believed that freedom of speech stimulated people’s opinions because if only a selected few could speak they could be wrong but they would not be corrected so society would become ignorant to the truth. Although I agree with Utilitarianism, I worry that if mass genocide or another situation like it brings the greatest amount of happiness for the greatest number people will just let it happen and their morals will be blindsided. This could be very dangerous.

John Locke also has some very significant points that support social liberalism. His social contract states that the people need to give up some power in order to be protected by the government. Locke also advocated for inherent rights, rights that one is born with. These rights include life, liberty and property. No, I do not agree with Adam Smith because I do not think the economy comes to a spontaneous order if you leave it alone. There is no such thing as the “invisible hand”. If the economy is left alone with no regulations it will lead to inequality. Businesses will create monopolies and family owned places will go out of business. Corporations will also take advantage of their workers since there would be no minimum wage or a set number of hours. Companies would become self-interested not caring about the common welfare. The wealthy would just become more wealthy, I do not believe in communism but one should consider a fine line between barely living and wasting money on flights to Paris. No one should have to worry about when their next meal will be and whether they will be able to pay off bills.

All in all, I associate with social liberalism because I believe individuals need to be governed and need to give up some of their freedom like John Locke's social contract states, in order to prevent chaos. Also not all individuals are educated enough to make decisions that's why a democracy is useful because elected officials voice the people’s opinions. I also support utilitarianism because I believe as long as there are rules the government should pass laws that give the greatest amount of happiness to the greatest amount of people. I think if we were less selfish and more focused on one another our society would be happier. I also really agree with Mill because I believe individuals should be able to do as they please as long as they do not harm those around them. At the end of the day a person's life is there's alone.

15 April 2020
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