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Better to be Feared or Loved? Essay

In The Prince, Niccolò Machiavelli goes into depth about how it is better to be feared than loved. He states that “Well, one would like to be both; but it’s difficult for one person to be both feared and loved, and when a choice has to be made it is safer to be feared.” I disagree with Machiavelli that it is better to be feared than to be loved. Being feared eventually wears off while being loved is always a feeling that will be there. There are many reasons why I disagree with Machiavelli. First of all, it is better to be loved than feared. Sometimes being feared will help someone get what they want, but with fear, feelings of resentment and hate can be found. It will also nurture subversive thoughts of revenge and other malicious intent. Just like in the TV show Gossip Girl, the main characters Blair and Sarina go back and forth seeking revenge over each other because one has more than the other. They are always in a constant battle against each other. Fear must be used in a tightly controlled and insistent fashion or it will fail. To be loved, however, nurtures caring, loyalty, kindness, and other positive binding and giving emotions.

It can spawn jealousy in some, but overall it is a much better relationship to have with other people. Fear can cause people to retaliate and eventually disappear. In the article, “Leadership and the Fear Factor”, the authors state “Emotions like love and fear, trust and mistrust, can play a significant role in whether a leader gains followers.” This concludes that typically leaders or anyone in the society gain followers by having trust and love. On a more of personal relationship, I would rather be loved, because to have everyone show fear towards each other, would mean you have no intimate relations with anyone and that is not true living. Franklin P. Jones once said, “Love doesn’t make the world go round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.” It is the most powerful feeling to feel loved. I know this by having such a supportive family. My family is always there through thick and thin and are always showing their love and compassion. I also know how it feels to be truly hated.

In middle school, there was this girl named Hunter Welch and no matter how hard I tried, she always hated me. So on further note, I think love is a way more powerful feeling. It does seem noticeable however, that someone would want to be feared if they are in a high position or authority. People who are in high authority are often driven by those who rule by fear. However, in a more personal relationship, it is best to be loved. In the article “Connect, Then Lead”, the authors gained my full attention. They question the readers, “Which is better, being loveable or being strong?” This question involves people who are on a high authority. The authors say, “Leaders who project strength before establishing trust run the risk of eliciting fear, and along with it a host of dysfunctional behaviors.” By this, they mean people ruin the leadership effectiveness. The authors then say, “The chances that a manager who is strongly disliked will be considered a good leader are only about one in two thousand.” Just by these statements, it is best to say that being feared rather than loved does not get people very far.

Being feared can cause a mass of destruction, but being loved by people can cause a more healthy relationship between others and the society. In conclusion, people who are loved are more valued than being feared. Whether people are of a high authority or just a common citizen, it is better for people to be loved than feared. Having hatred towards others or yourself will only cause loneliness and heartache. For example, Adolf Hitler, the dictator of Nazi Germany during World War II, may have had many people support him. However, Hitler caused only hatred and brought a lot of destruction. On a further note, being loved is better than being feared. Love has a stronger connection than fear.


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