Freedom Requires Responsibility

This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
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When I was growing up, my mother gave me advice about proceeding in this world. She said, “Don’t engage in behavior that, if everyone else were to do it, would destroy the world.” I knew what that meant then on a superficial level. Today, the advice seems profound.

What if Everyone Does It?

If you allow junk cars to populate your front lawn, and everyone else follows, how long will it be before your town, and everyone’s town in the entire world, becomes one big junkyard? If you smoke while you drive and then throw the butts onto the street, and all other drivers do the same, how long will it be before the streets are impassible or so littered that they disgust everyone?

If everyone brings a cell phone to a theatre, a movie, a restaurant, or a public gathering and uses it at will, how long will it take before all of society becomes a Tower of Babel?

Applied today, my mother’s advice tells us that while individual freedoms are to be cherished and enjoyed, they also have to be taken with responsibility. We can’t all be free to do exactly what we want all the time, even if the law allows it. We certainly can’t all engage in behavior that damages the environment, hinders the growth and development of children, or infringes upon other people’s rights.

Pass It On

My mother’s simple admonition needs to be passed on to far more people. This is a simple but all encompassing notion that can help people who might otherwise engage in questionable behavior, unaware of its effect on the overall society.

This article by Jeff Davidson originally appeared at and is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.


Jeff Davidson
NRN • New Right Network
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