Essay, Pages 3 (613 words)
Freedom can be described in a number of different ways and there are also many different types of freedom. The title “Freedom is not the lack of constraint, but the exercise of responsibility,” asks you if freedom is having the ability to do anything that you wish or having the control and responsibility of the world around them so that you feel no need for freedom because you are in control and you are the dictator.
The description of freedom in the dictionary is “The absence of necessity or constraint in choice or action,” this is a good grounding to start with.
There is also another quote that I think is relevant. “Freedom is being satisfied with the length of your rope.” This quite simply means that you can be living in even the worst conditions, and you could still be free because you are happy with your life and the lives of others around you. The people who write these kinds of quotes are generally optimistic people, but I think that they prove a valid point.
If you are happy with your life then why do you need control or more choice? The phrase “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it,” comes to mind! However it is impossible for someone to be completely happy because of the society we live in. This brings us to the topic of rules and boundaries.
In modern society we have rules and laws so that everyone can be as free as possible without affecting anybody else’s lives.
As well as choices being made for us as a democracy, this system also requires us to take on responsibility so that we don’t break the law. Many people would say that this is not free, but I think that if you are happy with that lifestyle then you are free.
A lack of constraint means that you can not do everything that you want. In a perfect world this would be fine, but we don’t live in a perfect world. However everyone’s view of a perfect world is different, if this coincides with the law and you are happy, then you can be free still living under laws and legislations.
If you believe that freedom is making your own choices then the only way that we can be “free” is if society does not exist. Then we have the world as our oyster and the only thing we can be unhappy about is ourselves.
Many pessimistic people may believe that freedom does not exist at all. You never have it. What exists is the ability to gain enough power to make a world in which you have the capabilities you are willing to accept. Freedom is not like gravity which exists independent of humans. It’s not in anyway natural or you would not have to fight for it. Just admit you are willing to use force to get the kind of life you want. All springs from understanding that you are fulfilling your own will, that is all. Freedom comes from our desires and our willingness to kill/imprison/force anyone who disagrees. This leads back to the ideology that if man is placed under extreme circumstances, it can release mans evil intentions.
In the end, I think that freedom is not just about being able to make your own choices, but it is also about the responsibility to make yourself happy. If we take the responsibility of making sure that our own “freedom” is achieved, it may lead to harsh circumstances. I believe that if we can achieve our own personal happiness realistically rather than utopia, then we can still be free allowing others to be free as well.