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The Argument - People get the society they deserve

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Batey, Feb 18, 2012.

  1. Batey

    Batey Chieftain

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    Im a political science-student and i like a good discussion. More than often i hear alot of angry friends use the argument "people get the society they deserve" and i can find so many problems with a argument like that. It seems generally from my perspective that alot of hardcore(bitter?) liberal-minded people seems to use it.

    Then to the question, you wise gents and gals on this forum. What do you think? I think its a flawed argument in so many ways, but im curious of what you think. To reflect is always a good thing.

    Sincerely

    PS. Hopefully my written English is understandable DS.
     
  2. Masada

    Masada Koi-san!

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    Black, brown and yellow peeps deserve to be tortured and oppressed. :(
     
  3. Leoreth

    Leoreth 心の怪盗団 Moderator

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    If it's taken literally and taken to its logical extreme, you really can disagree with that statement in a number of ways.

    I've always taken it a little more metaphorically, as in "if you don't like something about the society you live in, don't sit around and complain, do something about it". Can't disagree with that.
     
  4. civver_764

    civver_764 Chieftain

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    People don't deserve certain things because of their action or inaction, human rights and how we are treated should be equally applied to all.

    Not even the most brazen war hawk deserves to die at war. Not even the most reactionary religious fundamentalist deserves to have their life controlled by outside forces. And so on.
     
  5. Loppan Torkel

    Loppan Torkel Chieftain

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    I don't see the argument in it really, it's more a blunt statement. I'm not sure what people deserve or who is to blame for the suffering if not the people themselves, in general terms. I don't see how it's supposed to be any precise relation between individual goodness and a societal one though.
     
  6. Batey

    Batey Chieftain

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    I agree, but if you alone(one individual) try to make a revolution in a dictatorship-country-X you gonna get the bullet pretty quick. Liberals always seem to end up in the "free-will" paradox. Its their own fault that they accept a society like that etc.
     
  7. Shaihulud

    Shaihulud Chieftain

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    To an extent, but a people can be controlled and mislead as easily and through no fault of their own, a society is engineered which they do not choose.
     
  8. Leoreth

    Leoreth 心の怪盗団 Moderator

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    Yeah, I was about to append that the "you get the society you deserve" sentiment includes the assumption that you actually don't do something. Something you do your best to change things for the better, it's just not in your realm of possibility.

    In that sense, it really is an unfair attempt to shift the blame for collective situations to one individual.
     
  9. Save_Ferris

    Save_Ferris Admiring Myself

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    Everybody deserves what they seek.
     
  10. Batey

    Batey Chieftain

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    Well written sir, i wish my fundamentalist liberal friends would listen to that. But to some of them the collective seem to mean nothing. Some changed their mind after Egypt and Tahir-square.
     
  11. aelf

    aelf Ashen One

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    Such a sentiment is explicitly illiberal, so I don't know what you think makes your friends "liberal-minded".
     
  12. BvBPL

    BvBPL Pour Decision Maker

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    That statement is an absurd simplification that demeans the work that is necessary to actually change a political system.

    In a less than democratic system, it can also be used to shift the blame of the condition of an oppressed section of society away from the structural or political elements that oppress them and onto the oppressed themselves.
     
  13. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    I think we'd need to figure out what is meant by "people", "get", "society" and "deserve" before we could make enough sense of the argument to critique it.
     
  14. BasketCase

    BasketCase Username sez it all

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    More like, people get the society 51% of them deserve.

    Further difficulty: different people look at the same society and see different things about it. I'm fine with America the way it is, whereas other people in CFC view it as a borderline-police-state or a capitalist hive.
     
  15. Chibiabos

    Chibiabos Chieftain

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    Did Africans abducted and chained into slavery in the American colonies, up through the end of the slave trade, get the society they deserved?

    Hell no, and I doubt you'll find any person more politically liberal than myself.
     
  16. Eat_Up_Martha

    Eat_Up_Martha Chieftain

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    Thank you, that's exactly what I was thinking. It's rather vague.
     
  17. bhsup

    bhsup Chieftain

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    Before any of that can even be accomplished, we need to know what the definition of is is. ;)
     
  18. Azale

    Azale Chieftain

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    The people of North Korea must be real jerks.

    According to your friends anyway. Honestly, if you just point out the absurdity and intellectual laziness of the argument I think you'll be fine. It really doesn't deserve much more than that.
     
  19. Batey

    Batey Chieftain

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    No, but its frustrating. I grew up in a working-class home, then got the "read-books"-bug and when i started at the university i had this naive view that people that were well educated was smart and wise and didn´t like the to simplify.

    I use the intellectual laziness argument myself, the problem that two of them say "well you cant blame what´s around you, if you want to change something you have to use your will and if you dont you deserve it". It is pretty extreme yes.

    Thanks for the replys. It seems alot of reflective minds play Civ :)
     
  20. Terxpahseyton

    Terxpahseyton How much Parmesan to put on your umbrella?

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    We are intellectuals.
     

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