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Lecture 3

Lecture 3 - Freedom, Equality and Democracy.docx

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Political Science
Yasmine Shamsie

th Tuesday September 24 Lecture 3 – Freedom, Equality and Democracy  Freedom…but what about balancing morality and order?  Equality…but how much and how do we achieve it  Democracy…but which kind is most satisfying and doable (which systems help us have influence on decisions in our country  Freedom – the ability to act as one wants without interference, restraints, or coercion o Human beings create rules as soon as they come together in any group o Rejected if you don’t follow these rules o Do many things because it’s the law (stoplights) o Unstated rules (Ex. Courtesy of moving to the right on an escalator) o We are not as free as we believe we are  Freedom of Expression o “I disagree with my opponent but I support their right to say it” o Should hate speech be regulated??? (verbal oppression)  John Locke – people were born free, agreed to come under the shackles of government only if government would protect them and their freedom  - believed that outside the community was a dog eat dog world and the government would keep you safe, government believed they should restrict their regulations to things that can harm people  Utilitarianism – the view that humans seek to maximize pleasure and minimize pain and that government should act to achieve the greatest happiness for the greatest number o Critique = what if people end up overindulging, making poor choices, engaging in undesirable behaviour that could ultimately hurt the individual and the society as a whole (Ex. Elderly man who likes retrieving his paper nude vs. mom walking the 5 year old to school) o Beckam – everyday ordinary pleasures like alcohol, weed or higher pleasures such as going to a museum, sipping wine, smelling flowers o People would start out with lower pleasures, but as they were allowed full freedom they would mature and develop to like higher pleasures  Higher pleasures vs. Lower pleasures  All of these men argued in favour of the maximum amount of freedom possible o People need to be exposed to anything and everything, so that opinions can develop and mature  Freedom and Morality th Tuesday September 24 o Cultural relativism – everything is ok depending on what the society considers ok, or is their certain practices that are unacceptable?; o Ex. Clubbing a seal or child pornography  May 2009 – people blocking gardiner expressway  Freedom vs Order o Sometimes those who are protesting go beyond o How much is society willing to bend? o Children in the crowd (can’t just mow people down) o Pro-freedom people are always supportive of the state (the ace in restricting freedom – Canada under threat = acceptance of monitoring phone conversations)  Negative Freedom o Freedom from coercion o Think about being unshackled o No restraints when experiencing negative freedom
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