Challenges of a Good Citizen

Topics: Plato, Political philosophy, Democracy Pages: 4 (1474 words) Published: May 3, 2012
A good citizen fights for justice. A good citizen resists unfair laws. And a good citizen also rebels to change the rules that they feel needs to be adjusted. Socrates in Plato’s Crito makes it a point that a good citizen follows the government of the place that raised them. His claim on why he fought for his right to go unpunished in Plato’s Apology is that he was hoping to create a change in the government, and this is a thoughtful favor for him to do because it is important that the members of a state are involved in politics and the government. Socrates was happy living where he was for about seventy years, so why would he be mad at the rules now? “You have had seventy years to think about [the laws], and during that time you were free to leave if we did not please you or if our agreements appeared to you to be unfair.” (Plato 61). A good citizen must respect his home and where he comes from. This appreciation to the citizen’s home will better help him be considerate for other places. Education is also an important factor in becoming a good citizen, according to Martha C. Nussbaum. Her work Education for Profit, Education for Freedom discusses on how education shouldn’t be limited to just books and numbers, but it should expand to teach students about critical thinking. Individuality should be more emphasized, and by having people think for themselves regardless of what others do or say, there would be more improvement on personal development. They know that they are responsible for their own actions and can one day create change in this world. Nussbaum argues that schools should focus more on global issues and have the students state their opinions on them. By having these opinions, students can then take what they know and become more involved in politics and other matters of society. “Education will promote the enrichment of the student’s own senses, imagination, thought, and practical reason…” (Nussbaum 2). Students educated in critical thinking are, in...
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