Philosophy on Equal Rights

Topics: Property, Democracy, Liberty Pages: 3 (1065 words) Published: April 10, 2008
Throughout history, one of the most disputed topics has consistently been equal rights within society. Social equality is defined as a social state of affairs in which different individuals have the same status in a certain respect. These extend to voting rights, freedom of speech and assembly, property rights and the access to education, health care and other social securities. I will present and defend the idea that for each individual within a society to succeed to his or her full potential in my public philosophy, he or she must be guaranteed these equal rights.

The different political ideologies possess strong differing opinions on the principle of equal rights. Ideologies that support the extension of equal rights to all citizens include Contemporary Liberals and the Radical Left. There are some ideologies that are strongly opposed to the extension of equal rights to all citizens. These alternatives, which include Classical Liberals and Traditional Conservatives, do not believe that equal rights should be extended to those who are without property, illiterate, female, or possessing other attributes that have been used to differentiate the value of citizens. The problem with such alternative principles is that they place higher value on affluent citizens, which essentially divides society into two groups; full and second-class citizens. Without being granted these rights, especially access to education and health care, it makes it very difficult for “second-class” citizens to escape their status and the stigma to which they are attached.

In order for those who are less fortunate than the affluent citizens to improve their status in society, they need access to equal rights. The first and fundamental right they need access to is health care. In today’s society, with medical costs getting higher and higher, only the more affluent in society truly have access to proper health care. Those who are less fortunate and do not have medical insurance...
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