Introduction To Social And Political Society By Kant And John Stuart Mill

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Freedom is a concept that cannot be mutually defined by all. This is because of the various aspects that impact one perception on what freedom is and how it should be achieved. Through the text Introduction to Social and Political Society by Omid Payrow Shabani and Monique Deveaux, Immanuel Kant and John Stuart Mill provide their unique philosophies on the concept on freedom and liberty. Kant stands behind positive liberty and advocates that the government can act as an institutionalized version of the best parts of ourselves meaning that freedom does not mean an absence of government but one that helps everyone become more reasonable. Mill, on the other hand, supports negative freedom and believes that the state should only intervene when …show more content…
Government plays a very crucial role in the concept of freedom as government’s have power over society. Kant believes in a central form of government that can allow individuals to pursue to interests. In other words, Kant feels that government is necessary to ensure that others do not interfere with one’s interests and chance of pursuing then. Kant states, “At the end which is a duty in itself in such external relationships, and which is indeed the highest formal condition of all other external duties is the right of men under coercive public laws by which each can be given what is due to him and secured against attack from any others.” (Kant 174) Kant is explaining that men have the right to be protected from others while attaining the freedom that they deserve. Mill takes a different stance on this because he believes that to achieve true freedom, the government should only intervene when one’s freedom poses harm to others. Mill thinks that laws should be minimal and do not act as an infraction of one’s freedom. Mill argues against positive liberty as he believed it was a potential threat to the pursuit of happiness. A clear contrast exists between Kant in Mill because Kant believes that rationalism was of great importance whereas Mill thought that happiness was the common goal of all people. The two differ on this matter because Kant thinks …show more content…
Forcing humans to give restrict their freedom to gain freedom from the state is a contradicting concept. This form of government is much more autocratic and demanding of citizens. This is no way of freedom. Negative liberty would be a much more successful approach to freedom as society is now highly civilized and this is a laissez-faire. The common goal of all people is freedom as everyone wishes to be able to achieve what they want without the government telling them it is not right. With the evolution of human rights, it has been made clear that humans should be as equal as possible and society will function to its greatest ability when the humans live freely. This means that the government intervenes when necessary because of offensive or harmful acts (Rohlf 2016). In positive liberty, the government is there to tell you exactly what to do to not break the law, therefore remaining “free”.

Clearly, freedom is a topic of great relevance to our society that has been interpreted through many different lenses. Kant and Mill both share their strong views on government. Through understanding their philosophies, it is clear that the government has a strong relevance to the concept of freedom whether it is autocratic or laissez-faire. Although most people are confident their definition of freedom, it would be unrealistic to think that a mutual form of freedom could be achieved

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