August 29, 2014 by JImbo
(If you don’t like rough language, don’t bother with the video. It’s not essential to the point below.)
The moral of the story:
“FREEDOM IS THE ONLY WAY!”
I know the whole movie is a parody of America and our “Freedom for Everyone” mentality. I figured it was as good a way as any to start a discussion on the theme of the movie.
“Freedom is the only way!”
That’s what has been behind our interventions overseas since the beginning of our Republic. The Texans were just Americans who went to Mexico, settled and demanded freedom. We “freed” Hawaii. We “freed” Cuba, the Philippines, Puerto Rico, etc.
Even the Revolutionary War and Civil War were only fought by a minority of people who believed in freedom and sought to fight FOR other people…whether they wanted it or not.
Quite a few didn’t! Many of the Tories wanted to stay with England in the Revolution.
Plenty of slaves wanted to stay on the plantations, afraid of freedom.
Quite a few Southerners weren’t all that keen on leaving the Union either.
In this century we fought basically every war on the premise of “freeing” someone from “tyranny.”
Not saying it’s wrong. Freedom is great. My question is… IS Freedom the ONLY WAY? Do we have an obligation to free everyone, even if they don’t want to be freed?
Take Muslim women in Saudi Arabia for example. Do we have a moral obligation to go over and demand equal rights for them? is it their right to NOT seek equality as well? Is it a choice at all?
Are we being “Imperalistic” or “Arrogant” in wanting better sanitary conditions and equal rights for everyone in Africa? Are they allowed to keep their traditions even if they’re not what we think of as “civilized?”
In this country, do Muslims have the “freedom” to practice Sharia law? What about Mormons and polygamy? If a country still has slavery (Thailand comes to mind and much of Africa) do we shun them and stop trading with them until they change their mind? Is it our responsibility to demand freedom for other people?
It’s not just an academic argument over semantics. Since it is the foundation of our foreign policy in the world, we should have a debate on this point. I believe it was John Stuart Mills who said that it was IMMORAL to impose freedom on someone. It robs them of the ability to win that freedom for themselves and make the choice whether to use that freedom or not.
I think it was Mills. On the other hand I know he did say that harm could be caused by inaction as well as action towards others.
What do you think?