Individual, Society, State, Government, Authority, God

This article analyzes the origins, history, philosophies and ideologies, regarding the existence and the authority enjoyed by state and government. Compares and contrasts those with the liberty and freedom of individual. Finds out what is more important. Is it the government and state, or is it the liberty and freedom of individual? Reviews the major arguments, in the light of nature, reason and history.

The Right to Vote and US Citizens

The right to vote is a freedom afforded by democratic rule, and has seen many civil conflicts fought to establish or maintain its integrity. While different social demographics have historically been denied this right on the grounds of race or sex at some time or another, the contemporary idea of democracy is inclusive of all individual factions and their belief systems, and seeks to discriminate against no single group or social circumstance. However, if we accept that the idea of voting is a privilege afforded by democracy, then there is an argument to ensure that citizens have earned and appreciate this right.

Balancing Democracy With the Well Being of the Country

While it is undoubtedly undemocratic and abhorrent to discriminate against voters on the generic grounds of race or sex, this is because it degenerates a specific social group without genuine purpose or foundation. However, this does not necessarily mean that every individual should automatically be afforded the right to vote, especially where they have chosen to segregate themselves from general society or hold divisive views that oppose the principles of democratic rule.

A similar logic applies to those who have a minimal interest in or knowledge of politics, who although retain the right not to vote are often pressurized by social expectation to do so. In this instance, individuals may vote without a broad or appreciable understanding of the prevalent social issues, which means that their input is misdirected and that the chosen government of the US may not be a reflection of their true support. Put simply, the drive to ensure that citizens vote could prove to be detrimental to the integrity of the final result.

Any of these circumstances can deter the course of democracy, and create a situation where the elected government regime is either unrepresentative or reflects the interests of those opposed to democracy. What the US and other democratic nations therefore need to assess is whether allowing everyone the right to vote is in the interests of society as a whole, and whether creating stipulations for eligibility could ever be enforced in a liberal rule. What must be elevated above all else is the integrity of the election process, and the importance of selecting a desired government.

Is Apathy a Cause or Consequence of Social Issues?

If we are to listen intently to the various media outlets that report on news and current affairs every day, we could be forgiven for believing that the world is veering on the very edge of tumult. From global conflicts that push the grand concept of world peace ever further from the grasp of civilized community to health and social issues that are more prominent within the US, it would appear that societies and the people within them are at the mercy of circumstances like no other generation before them.

However, many of these local or global issues are created by the many faults of mankind, whether it is greed to steal or satisfy a personal desire, or a misguided aspiration to use faith and religion and a tool to engineer anarchy. This makes these problems so much more than the sum of their parts, as there are too many cases of individuals turning away and displaying overt apathy in the face of their manifestation. The most pertinent question is whether this apathy is the root cause for such social issues, or whether it is a consequence of them and their subsequent media coverage.

What are the Issues and their Causes

This lack of feeling can be seen in many cases of neglect and wilful ignorance. For example, the level of US citizens who smoke is still unreasonably high at between 19 and 20 percent. Although this figure is down by an estimated 5 percent on the numbers recorded in 1990, it is unfathomable given both the public exposure of the damage that cigarettes cause and the quality of treatments available that so many still choose to smoke at all. This practice is clearly at odds with the advertisement campaigns, scientific research and media coverage that has been invested in revealing the extent that cigarette smoking can do to the human body.