Enlightenment, Locke, Nationalism and Democracy Connections

Topics: Political philosophy, Government, Democracy Pages: 2 (663 words) Published: October 25, 2012
 Which of the political philosophers you read about do you think had the greatest influence on government and society today?  Provide reasons for your position.

Out of all the political philosophers that I read about, I think Locke had the greatest influence on society and government today. John Locke influenced society with his idea that all babies are born “clean slates”. Even today, many people still believe that the environment in which a child grows up in is what forms him or her into the person they become later on in life. Another idea Locke had that influenced society was the belief regarding political freedom. Having political freedom is one of the most valued things this country offers its citizens. Being able to vote for our president, having the ability to run for any position in our government, and being able to speak our minds regarding our government and issues that surround it- is very important in America today. Political freedom is what makes our country stand out, and it is what other countries envy as well. Because John Locke strongly believed in political freedom, it positively influenced our government and society in the United States. Lastly, the natural rights that Locke came up with exist in our Constitution even in this modern world. The rights to “life, liberty, and property” are enforced in society as well as in our government. Nobody but one’s own self has rights to their own liberty, life, and property, and I think that that concept created by John Locke had the greatest influence on our culture today.

 With which of the philosophers do you disagree the most? Why?

Out of all the philosophers, I disagree with Hobbes the most. This is because I do not believe that his idea of exchanging freedom for security was a reasonable form of government. I believe that people have the right to criticize a ruler’s policies, and Hobbes did not believe that. The fact that Thomas Hobbes wrote a novel on how the government must be absolute...
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