Comparing John Stuart Mill And John Locke's On Liberty

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Throughout history philosophers have argued over every topic one could imagine however one of the most explored topics is the rights of citizens. What must those who enter a society under their free will give up to be an active member? Is the government allowed to ask you to give up some of your rights for the betterment of society? Questions such as these and countless more have been answered and debated by philosophers for years. Some of the most prominent arguments have been made by John Stuart Mill and John Locke. While both are strong about their stances their opinions differ.
In John Stuart Mill’s second chapter of On Liberty he presents one overarching conclusion, that any censorship of expression of opinion must be completely prevented.
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One who would object would be John Locke. In Locke’s A Second Treatise of Government he argues that the citizens within a society are under the understanding that the opinion of the majority is the way the society shall be governed. He argues that for society to be governed properly the citizens must give up their natural freedom and place their trust within the society. There are two main areas of freedom that must be given up for society to work. First the citizens must give themselves up to the law of the society, they must allow restrictions and limits to be placed upon them for the society to run effectively. Secondly the citizens must put themselves under the protection of the society and trust that they will be defended and taken care of. When this trust is given to the society and the government then they can effectively protect and ensure “the peace, safety, and public good of the people. This is contrary to what Mill would argue as he does not believe citizens should submit themselves to society and give away their rights. He believes that as an individual citizen you should fight for your opinion and never give into society. Doing so would be negative for

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