Chance has it, that most citizens in the Western world, if asked, would claim to be free. However, in a large number of cities and towns freedom is an illusion.
Ask yourself, ask your children if their freedom includes walking down any street after dark, or through a park alone. In most democratic countries the majority of citizens fear their neighborhoods at night. They keep their homes and businesses locked until daybreak. Fear is a dominant factor in the lives of many; while assault is considered as a normal everyday risk. It is not unusual for today’s householder to feel terrified in their own home even when said dwelling is protected by dogs, searchlights & alarms.
Not that long ago, in New York City, a group of twenty youngsters invaded a high school while classes were in session. The invaders lost no time on talk, instead quickly tied two teachers to their chairs, taped shut their mouths then bombarded the lot of them with political slogans.
As early as 1969, it was reported in a popular magazine: “People are more afraid. Small-town residents hesitate to visit the big cities.” Crime and violence rule. Students are plagued by disorders, education denied, protests and riots. Teachers are attacked and begin carrying their guns to school.
Freedom is also missing from the economic arena where the mood is one of desperation bordering on hysteria. How many are those working at jobs that bring the worker genuine satisfaction? Few are those earning top dollar. Everywhere are skilled laborers denied employment because of policies and unions. Money is scarce and of little worth. Groceries are expensive. We continue to pay for bottled water. We are no longer free to breathe clean air.
Freedom does not mean that there are no laws by which we are to live. The universe itself remains ordered by way of law. Nor are we made uncomfortable by gravity . Then again if we jump from a high building death or severe injury awaits us.
The philosopher asks, “Is man not created a free moral agent?” “Will obedience to law lead us to the highest form of freedom?” ” Should a person interested in what is right choose doing right and try to correct wrong?”