Freedom is often misused, it’s abused in a sense that we all at some point are taught tobelieve we have it. I’ve come to realize that’s false in so many ways. When I wake up in themorning, there are laws I must abide by and people that I should listen too. I want to do neitherin most cases. What is freedom? How do I convince others that it doesn’t exist? What do otherphilosophers think about freedom? What do people, in general, feel about freedom. Freedomdoesn’t exist because we don’t have the free will to live the lives we desire.What is freedom?According to Merriam-Webster.com freedom is defined as such; the quality or state ofbeing free: the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action. Liberation fromslavery or restraint or the power of another, independence, the quality or state of being exempt orusually released from something onerous freedom from care. Those definitions sound good butare they right? No, we don’t have freedom. Freedom is everything explained above. When mostpeople think of freedom, they counter it with slavery. But not the modern slavery we’re goingthrough. Slavery in the sense of taking over Africa and bringing Africans back to America forfree, harsh labor. Rousseau is a philosopher who lived from 1712-1778. He gave input to what freedom was and how it affected people. In his book “Social Contract” he explains how we placerestraints on our behavior and that’s what makes it possible for us to live in a community. Hegoes on to explain that we don’t only compromise with our freedom but with our rationality andmorality and that’s only possible in civil society. By doing that we enter into a social contract(Rousseau, 1762).The social contract”The Social Contract” is a book I’ve repeatedly read because I’m always talking topeople about modern slavery. Modern slavery is the doing of things we don’t agree with becauseit’s normal or it’s what society is doing at that time. Obeying laws that limit us to our completeselves and the lives we desire to live. For example; going to college and spending tens ofthousands of dollars is a form of modern slavery, paying taxes and not knowing what they’regoing too, Obeying laws that we don’t agree with or understand. Buying clothes that we can’tafford because they’re popular at the time. Paying for houses that take twenty-five years to payoff with a high-interest rate because a person’s credit isn’t proper. That was just a few; I couldwrite a book about modern slavery. So, explain to me again how are we free? For every step aperson takes, they take two steps back because of the social contract they signed. By giving upour physical freedom, however, we gain the civil freedom of being able to reason (Rousseau,1762). We can put a check on our impulses and desires, and thus learn to think morally(Rousseau, 1762).My unpopular opinionWhen I think about being free, I think about buying a house at a reasonable price withlittle to no interest; my job isn’t to make the banks rich. My job is to get rich so that I can bring people up with me. I want to be able to walk the streets naked just because I don’t feel likegetting dressed one morning. Or calling out of work for a personal day because I need a break.Paying a fair amount of money for college because I’ve maintained a high GPA. Or not going toschool at all but because I know I won’t have a fair chance of success I must go!The Second Treatise of Civil GovernmentSounds familiar, well that’s because it is. John Locke was known as the father ofLiberalism and personally one of my favorite philosophers to study. In his book, “An essayconcerning human understanding” he talks about how all men are free by nature and that Godhas made all people subject to a monarch. That one burned me because as big as a fan I am ofhis work I would have to disagree. God plays a major role in philosophy debates, but to me, he’swhat makes me free. Given that we were put on this earth to be free and live our lives as Godwould want. That is then, dismantled by the laws we should abide by daily. Locke goes on toexplain that we have the power to be free (Locke, 1689). I’m on the fence with this essaybecause I tell myself daily that I can do anything I truly want and I believe that but in the samesince I know I can only do what legal. Liberty…is the power a Man has to do or forbear doingany particular Action, according to as its doing or forbearance has the actual preference in theMind, which is the same thing as to say, according to as he wills it. ( Locke, 1689,E1-5 II.xxi.15:241)Nothing is freePlants, animals, natural resources such as water, light, darkness. I’ve named a few thingsthat we perceive to be free. But in general, nothing or anyone is FREE. Flowers bloom at varioustimes of the year and animals breed every day. Water flows as an uncontrollable source. Light shines for twelve hours a day, and the moon is present for another 12. When flowers bloom theybloom at alarming rates, so companies advised by the city officials are told to spray pesticide andother harmful chemicals to kill them to decrease growth, allergies, and bugs. Is that freedom or isthat murder? Plants can’t speak for themselves and animals also can’t properly communicate.Freedom doesn’t exist for anything or anyone. When a dog gets cancer, the owner takes it to thevet and have it put to sleep. Some humans get sick with chronic diseases and decide that they’llrather live than die. But most animals don’t have that choice we just decide that they’ve hadenough and killed them. Is that freedom or murder? Some people do believe in freedom; thosepeople are usually conservatives and people of a particular class. Freedom is possible inparticular senses, such as money and power over things or people. Those people are also slavesto something, whether it is emotional (Robin Williams), physical (Stephen Hawking’s),mentally ( Donald Trump). So as I’ve stated before freedom isn’t a realistic goal. Not even forthe richest, smartest or funniest people in the world.ClosingAs much as we want to be free, we will never be truly free from all things. We as humanshave the power to say what we will or will not do, but we must be ready to face theconsequences of disobeying the law or people who can truly impact our lives. Even though Idisagree with Locke’s philosophy on freedom, I honestly do believe he was going somewherewith it. Maybe one day I’ll gain the power to be free A.K.A money and authority. What isfreedom? How do I convince others that it doesn’t exist? What do other philosophers think aboutfreedom? What do people, in general, feel about freedom. Freedom doesn’t exist because wedon’t have the free will to live the lives we desire. No one has the choice of if they want to befree. Freedom only exists in certain senses. In the sense of power, money, and the mind of someinviduals.
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