• This is a political forum that is non-biased/non-partisan and treats every persons position on topics equally. This debate forum is not aligned to any political party. In today's politics, many ideas are split between and even within all the political parties. Often we find ourselves agreeing on one platform but some topics break our mold. We are here to discuss them in a civil political debate. If this is your first visit to our political forums, be sure to check out the RULES. Registering for debate politics is necessary before posting. Register today to participate - it's free!

Too Much Freedom

Hoplite

Technomancer
DP Veteran
Joined
Feb 6, 2010
Messages
3,779
Reaction score
1,077
Location
California
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Moderate
Or at least not enough responsibility.

This is something I've wondered about for a while. In the US, we have an extreme fixation with the idea of freedom. It's used to justify a lot of the things we do or enjoy that logic might tell us is not the best idea or even a good idea.

In that respect, there seems to be an emphasis of the idea of freedom that sort of drowns out any sort of higher brain function that might make you critically examine if what you're doing is a good idea or not regardless of the fact that you CAN do it.

"Do you really think you should be eating five Big Macs a day?"
"This is 'Merica! I have the freedom to eat what I want!"
"Ok...but you arent worried about potential medical complications and costs down the road of such a high risk diet?"
"Dont care!"

We seem to be obsessed with this idea that we HAVE to be free to do WHATEVER we want and yet there seems to be almost no emphasis on if we SHOULD do whatever we want. To paraphrase Dr. Malcom from everyone's favorite dinosaur movie, "You were so preoccupied with whether or not you could, you didn't stop to think if you should."

I feel like most Americans are obsessed with being able to do whatever they want that they dont stop to think if they should, they arent mature enough to understand that freedom comes with responsibilities. I feel like our society as a whole has not understood this concept and daily works to emphasize freedom over ALL other concerns.

Now this is not to say I'm in favor of a laundry list of new rules or restricting people's freedom, but I feel like we aren't really ready to handle as much freedom as we have. I feel like we need to be reminded to think about what we do beyond the permissive stage. I think it's great to have a society where you can do almost anything you want but I feel like that has to come AFTER you understand that there is a strong degree of responsibility.

I think the vast majority of us are guilty of this.
 

Councilman

DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 25, 2009
Messages
4,454
Reaction score
1,654
Location
Riverside, County, CA.
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
Or at least not enough responsibility.

This is something I've wondered about for a while. In the US, we have an extreme fixation with the idea of freedom. It's used to justify a lot of the things we do or enjoy that logic might tell us is not the best idea or even a good idea.

In that respect, there seems to be an emphasis of the idea of freedom that sort of drowns out any sort of higher brain function that might make you critically examine if what you're doing is a good idea or not regardless of the fact that you CAN do it.

"Do you really think you should be eating five Big Macs a day?"
"This is 'Merica! I have the freedom to eat what I want!"
"Ok...but you arent worried about potential medical complications and costs down the road of such a high risk diet?"
"Dont care!"

We seem to be obsessed with this idea that we HAVE to be free to do WHATEVER we want and yet there seems to be almost no emphasis on if we SHOULD do whatever we want. To paraphrase Dr. Malcom from everyone's favorite dinosaur movie, "You were so preoccupied with whether or not you could, you didn't stop to think if you should."

I feel like most Americans are obsessed with being able to do whatever they want that they dont stop to think if they should, they arent mature enough to understand that freedom comes with responsibilities. I feel like our society as a whole has not understood this concept and daily works to emphasize freedom over ALL other concerns.

Now this is not to say I'm in favor of a laundry list of new rules or restricting people's freedom, but I feel like we aren't really ready to handle as much freedom as we have. I feel like we need to be reminded to think about what we do beyond the permissive stage. I think it's great to have a society where you can do almost anything you want but I feel like that has to come AFTER you understand that there is a strong degree of responsibility.

I think the vast majority of us are guilty of this.
This is as dangerous a train of thought as I have seen here. We are free to be wrong and yes we do it all the damn time. Electing Obama is a prime example of people not using their ability to think responsibly before screwing up and voting for a Marxist.

Not see that is my opinion and many are going to attack me for it for who is to say who's opinion is the right one.

I don't want big brother making any decisions for me because that is a dictatorship and they end in the worst kind of despotism which is where we are heading if we don't continue to oppose it.

San Francisco just outlawed happy meals because they are the stupidest people on earth. Parents need to be able to buy a happy meal when they want and not have some literally crazy people telling them what they can and can't do.

That goes for everything in life. If what I want to do does not have a direct personal effect on it's none of your damn business what I eat buy, drink smoke or say.

Our rights are inalienable and not to be trifled with by someone who thinks they know better than someone else.

We have enough of that from Obama and his type of would be dictators.

Leave my rights the hell alone. I don't want some idiots messing with My Constitution ever.

Too many people repeat what the hear and believe what they are told because the can't think for themselves.
 

Mensch

Mr. Professional
DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 12, 2010
Messages
3,715
Reaction score
751
Location
Northern Virginia
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Independent
Or at least not enough responsibility.

This is something I've wondered about for a while. In the US, we have an extreme fixation with the idea of freedom. It's used to justify a lot of the things we do or enjoy that logic might tell us is not the best idea or even a good idea.

In that respect, there seems to be an emphasis of the idea of freedom that sort of drowns out any sort of higher brain function that might make you critically examine if what you're doing is a good idea or not regardless of the fact that you CAN do it.

"Do you really think you should be eating five Big Macs a day?"
"This is 'Merica! I have the freedom to eat what I want!"
"Ok...but you arent worried about potential medical complications and costs down the road of such a high risk diet?"
"Dont care!"

We seem to be obsessed with this idea that we HAVE to be free to do WHATEVER we want and yet there seems to be almost no emphasis on if we SHOULD do whatever we want. To paraphrase Dr. Malcom from everyone's favorite dinosaur movie, "You were so preoccupied with whether or not you could, you didn't stop to think if you should."

I feel like most Americans are obsessed with being able to do whatever they want that they dont stop to think if they should, they arent mature enough to understand that freedom comes with responsibilities. I feel like our society as a whole has not understood this concept and daily works to emphasize freedom over ALL other concerns.

Now this is not to say I'm in favor of a laundry list of new rules or restricting people's freedom, but I feel like we aren't really ready to handle as much freedom as we have. I feel like we need to be reminded to think about what we do beyond the permissive stage. I think it's great to have a society where you can do almost anything you want but I feel like that has to come AFTER you understand that there is a strong degree of responsibility.

I think the vast majority of us are guilty of this.
We do have a failed system of personalized freedom and public bailout.

YES, go ahead and eat 5 big macs a day...just don't expect ME to pay the medical bills.

In a way, it is sort of a social darwinist way of thinking. People should be free, but also must take responsibility for their freedom. If that means more stupid people die from taking the liberty of being stupid, then so be it. What better to decrease the surplus population than to let people perish from this earth by their own free will.
 

OscarB63

Farts in Elevators
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 7, 2010
Messages
26,526
Reaction score
9,462
Location
Alabama
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
you can drive a car with your feet if you want to...but that don't make it a good ****in idea.

we have the freedom to make stupid decisions, we should also take the responsibilty for making them and not expect those who chose more wisely to bail us out.
 

Barbbtx

DP Veteran
Joined
Jan 7, 2010
Messages
8,467
Reaction score
1,993
Location
W'Ford TX
Gender
Female
Political Leaning
Conservative
We do have a failed system of personalized freedom and public bailout.

YES, go ahead and eat 5 big macs a day...just don't expect ME to pay the medical bills.

In a way, it is sort of a social darwinist way of thinking. People should be free, but also must take responsibility for their freedom. If that means more stupid people die from taking the liberty of being stupid, then so be it. What better to decrease the surplus population than to let people perish from this earth by their own free will.
This is exactly why the government shouldn't be responsible for our Healthcare. The more the government "takes care of our needs" the less freedom we will have. Now when people get foodstamps, they are trying to pass a law stating what kind of food they are allowed to buy. Much like an adult living with his parents. "While you're living under my roof......."
Sorry, I'll take freedom as long as freedom is still possible.
 

lizzie

DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 22, 2009
Messages
28,581
Reaction score
31,550
Location
between two worlds
Gender
Female
Political Leaning
Libertarian
Freedom requires responsiblity, which is something we are seeing less and less of these days. In light of this, I fully expect our freedoms to continue to erode away.
 

Orion

DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 25, 2008
Messages
8,083
Reaction score
3,918
Location
Canada
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Independent
People exchange freedom for governance, and that's just the reality of the trade off when you decide to exist as a defined nation.

The problem is, for individuals to understand and exercise freedom as well as responsibility in their choices, they have to be in touch with what it is they really want and own that. I don't just single out the U.S. when I say this, but the so-called "developed" world in general. Our society has become a playground of distractions. A lot of behaviours have become automatic. It's to the point where I question if people truly have freedom anymore. They have given up freedom for comfort and the luxury to not have to think about their own political consciousness. We are so far removed from the source of our own life, the earth; we are far removed from our means of survival and production which gives us all the things we lazily cling to; and we are incredibly far removed from the context of history which shows that the maintenance of liberty from tyranny is an incredibly tumultuous and ongoing process that must ALWAYS be examined. For all practical purposes, North America has not had a bomb dropped on it in like 200 years. We talk about how much our freedom means to us but it's just a platitude that is easily abused at this point.

Superficially people have freedom, but with so many unconscious behaviours happening due to all of the vices and luxuries that take away from understanding their personal intentions, it's no wonder responsibility is not factoring into choices all that much. Even though our knowledge of information has increased, I think our over all consciousness is continually being challenged to stay awake and present.

The national debt is a symptom of that. Most individuals are in debt, as are most municipalities, all the way up the chain to the very government we entrusted to manage the books in exchange for a little bit of our freedom.

A lot of people - especially libertarians - are hung up on the responsibility argument. I think we are way, way past that. We're to the point where a disturbing number of people aren't even stopping to consider that they are indeed making choices and that they indeed have the power to choose differently. The lights are on but nobody's home. And many wonder why the government is increasingly statist and out of control? It's because many are not even stopping to look at the sobering truth of their own lives, let alone what the people in power are doing! The government is increasingly being asked to become a facilitator for unconsciousness... not only are people asleep, they want to stay that way. They want the fantasy to continue. The government is being asked to make sure the machinery continues turning at all costs to maintain the illusion. Hence absurd debt levels. The people here at DP represent a minority demographic of people who are striving to maintain awareness. We bitch and complain that the government is always lying to us. But what does that tell you? The majority want to be lied to. It pacifies their delusions further.

We have achieved "the dream". We have the nice house, the big screen t.v., the car, the 9-5, and plenty of entertaining and amusing distractions to pacify us into old age. At the same time, many have been moving towards states of further unawareness. Now that we have it all, are we really happy? Is this really how we, as a race, want to live out the next 500 years?
 
Last edited:

snbl11225

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2010
Messages
90
Reaction score
26
Location
Oklahoma, USA
Gender
Female
Political Leaning
Independent
you can drive a car with your feet if you want to...but that don't make it a good ****in idea.

we have the freedom to make stupid decisions, we should also take the responsibilty for making them and not expect those who chose more wisely to bail us out.
Freedom of speech ends when that freedom endangers the right of another--you can't yell fire at a theater. Does that not also apply to others. If refusing to allow for inspections at the airport allows terroists to have an easier path towards destruction does that not endanger others. Espeacially, if we have another 9-11, or something worse. Our rights come with responcibilities and right now those responcibilities seem to be delegated to the back burner by many American citizens.
 

Paschendale

Uncanny
DP Veteran
Joined
Nov 3, 2010
Messages
12,510
Reaction score
12,604
Location
New York City
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Socialist
We do seem to have an irrational notion of freedom. As if having the "right to be wrong" is somehow a good thing. I don't mean keeping people from their opinions, but reinforcing this idea that any idiocy is fine so long as you're stubborn about it. Morally, no one has the right to force a person to think anything. However, a person still ought to take personal responsibility to honesty and intellectual discourse. We should want to be right, not demand to be wrong.

This is similar to an argument about free press. They have the right to report whatever they deem necessary, without interference. But they also have a responsibility to promote social well-being, and to check those in power, rather than aiding the powerful and lining their own pockets, which is what they do.

In short, rights come with responsibilities, and we seem to have forgotten that.
 

samsmart

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 7, 2009
Messages
10,316
Reaction score
6,470
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Other
We have enough of that from Obama and his type of would be dictators.
To be fair, we have enough of that from George W. Bush and his type of would-be-dictators as well.
 

phattonez

Traditionalist
DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 3, 2009
Messages
30,552
Reaction score
4,221
Location
Los Angeles, CA
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Other
I feel like most Americans are obsessed with being able to do whatever they want that they dont stop to think if they should, they arent mature enough to understand that freedom comes with responsibilities. I feel like our society as a whole has not understood this concept and daily works to emphasize freedom over ALL other concerns.

Now this is not to say I'm in favor of a laundry list of new rules or restricting people's freedom, but I feel like we aren't really ready to handle as much freedom as we have. I feel like we need to be reminded to think about what we do beyond the permissive stage. I think it's great to have a society where you can do almost anything you want but I feel like that has to come AFTER you understand that there is a strong degree of responsibility.

I think the vast majority of us are guilty of this.
The responsibility is don't mess with anyone else's freedoms. If you want to destroy your own life then that's your choice. It's part of being an adult.
 

Albert Di Salvo

DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 27, 2009
Messages
5,544
Reaction score
685
Location
Undisclosed
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Other
Exchanging freedom for bad governance is not an option. Exchanging freedom for good governance is only an option if a national community exists.

In the absence of a national community and good governance, imposing conditions on individual liberty is a way of saying let's have a civil war. If you don't want what's left of America to die, don't screw with individual liberty. Individual liberty is much more important than the existence of America in it's current form.
 

RightinNYC

Girthless
DP Veteran
Joined
Mar 21, 2005
Messages
25,894
Reaction score
12,484
Location
New York, NY
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Conservative
Or at least not enough responsibility.

This is something I've wondered about for a while. In the US, we have an extreme fixation with the idea of freedom. It's used to justify a lot of the things we do or enjoy that logic might tell us is not the best idea or even a good idea.

In that respect, there seems to be an emphasis of the idea of freedom that sort of drowns out any sort of higher brain function that might make you critically examine if what you're doing is a good idea or not regardless of the fact that you CAN do it.

"Do you really think you should be eating five Big Macs a day?"
"This is 'Merica! I have the freedom to eat what I want!"
"Ok...but you arent worried about potential medical complications and costs down the road of such a high risk diet?"
"Dont care!"

We seem to be obsessed with this idea that we HAVE to be free to do WHATEVER we want and yet there seems to be almost no emphasis on if we SHOULD do whatever we want. To paraphrase Dr. Malcom from everyone's favorite dinosaur movie, "You were so preoccupied with whether or not you could, you didn't stop to think if you should."

I feel like most Americans are obsessed with being able to do whatever they want that they dont stop to think if they should, they arent mature enough to understand that freedom comes with responsibilities. I feel like our society as a whole has not understood this concept and daily works to emphasize freedom over ALL other concerns.

Now this is not to say I'm in favor of a laundry list of new rules or restricting people's freedom, but I feel like we aren't really ready to handle as much freedom as we have. I feel like we need to be reminded to think about what we do beyond the permissive stage. I think it's great to have a society where you can do almost anything you want but I feel like that has to come AFTER you understand that there is a strong degree of responsibility.

I think the vast majority of us are guilty of this.
These seem like pretty good arguments against Medicaid, Social Security and other welfare programs.
 

Teh Internets

Active member
Joined
Jun 13, 2010
Messages
351
Reaction score
125
Location
Virginia, USA
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
If some idiot eats five big macs just hope he dies of a heart attack before reproducing.
 

Barbbtx

DP Veteran
Joined
Jan 7, 2010
Messages
8,467
Reaction score
1,993
Location
W'Ford TX
Gender
Female
Political Leaning
Conservative
If some idiot eats five big macs just hope he dies of a heart attack before reproducing.
Careful there... you might give yourself a heart attack by getting so worked up about what someone else is eating.:drink:beer::popcorn2::popcorn::cheers:
 

Harshaw

Filmmaker ● Lawyer ● Patriot
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 1, 2005
Messages
38,750
Reaction score
13,831
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Libertarian - Right
Or at least not enough responsibility.

This is something I've wondered about for a while. In the US, we have an extreme fixation with the idea of freedom. It's used to justify a lot of the things we do or enjoy that logic might tell us is not the best idea or even a good idea.

In that respect, there seems to be an emphasis of the idea of freedom that sort of drowns out any sort of higher brain function that might make you critically examine if what you're doing is a good idea or not regardless of the fact that you CAN do it.

"Do you really think you should be eating five Big Macs a day?"
"This is 'Merica! I have the freedom to eat what I want!"
"Ok...but you arent worried about potential medical complications and costs down the road of such a high risk diet?"
"Dont care!"

We seem to be obsessed with this idea that we HAVE to be free to do WHATEVER we want and yet there seems to be almost no emphasis on if we SHOULD do whatever we want. To paraphrase Dr. Malcom from everyone's favorite dinosaur movie, "You were so preoccupied with whether or not you could, you didn't stop to think if you should."

I feel like most Americans are obsessed with being able to do whatever they want that they dont stop to think if they should, they arent mature enough to understand that freedom comes with responsibilities. I feel like our society as a whole has not understood this concept and daily works to emphasize freedom over ALL other concerns.

Now this is not to say I'm in favor of a laundry list of new rules or restricting people's freedom, but I feel like we aren't really ready to handle as much freedom as we have. I feel like we need to be reminded to think about what we do beyond the permissive stage. I think it's great to have a society where you can do almost anything you want but I feel like that has to come AFTER you understand that there is a strong degree of responsibility.

I think the vast majority of us are guilty of this.
No one else's life and decisions are your business, no matter what you "feel like." Conduct your own life responsibly and leave everyone else alone.
 

WI Crippler

DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 10, 2006
Messages
15,429
Reaction score
9,577
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
The problem isn't freedom, or feeling that you should be free to do as you so choose. The problem is the responsibility portion that is mentioned. The reason this is even an issue is because, through well intended government programs and medical advances, we are absolving ourselves of responsibility for our personal actions. My wife sees this everyday in her neuro-trauma unit. There are instances of good people caught up in a bad spot, that wasn't their fault who come in ****ed up beyond belief. But there is a higher incidence of people who made very poor decisions, that should otherwise be dead. They get fixed up, regardless of their insurance status, only to return after another incident usually involving drugs/alcohol. And everybody else bears the burden of these undeserving people while they continue to drain the resources of the people who make good decisions.
 

Harshaw

Filmmaker ● Lawyer ● Patriot
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 1, 2005
Messages
38,750
Reaction score
13,831
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Libertarian - Right
I think that's what RINYC was getting at.
 

WI Crippler

DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 10, 2006
Messages
15,429
Reaction score
9,577
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
I think that's what RINYC was getting at.
Not sure if you are responding to me.

I don't have a problem with limited social safety nets. Sometimes bad things do happen to good people, who could return as contributors. I have a problem with the people who abuse them, or use them when they could make life choices that would keep them off those safety nets. For example, I have a classmate who claims to be unable to afford even catastrophic medical insurance. but she is going on a vacation to an island in the carribean in december, and just spent $500 getting tattoo work done. She brags up going to all weekend parties and festivals on a regular basis. Is she a bad person? Not really, but she's using state funded medicaid services when its quite possible that she could afford her own medical insurance should she choose to.
 

snbl11225

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2010
Messages
90
Reaction score
26
Location
Oklahoma, USA
Gender
Female
Political Leaning
Independent
No one else's life and decisions are your business, no matter what you "feel like." Conduct your own life responsibly and leave everyone else alone.
Unfortunately, what others do can effect me imediately or somewhere down the line. That does not neccessarilly mean that you cannot/should not do whatever, but you should at the very least consider how the consequences of you act will impact others.
 

Hoplite

Technomancer
DP Veteran
Joined
Feb 6, 2010
Messages
3,779
Reaction score
1,077
Location
California
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Moderate
For example, I have a classmate who claims to be unable to afford even catastrophic medical insurance. but she is going on a vacation to an island in the carribean in december, and just spent $500 getting tattoo work done. She brags up going to all weekend parties and festivals on a regular basis. Is she a bad person? Not really, but she's using state funded medicaid services when its quite possible that she could afford her own medical insurance should she choose to.
I should point out that such abuses are in violation of how the system's rules actually work. I'm not sure where you are, but in California you need to show the state where every penny that you have is and where it came from to even apply for benefits. Even then, ANY income at all needs to be reported and is processed with your benefits.

The only way to make decent money and still be on medicaid or medical is to lie.
 
Top Bottom