Freedom is something that comes natural to us all, it is a desire to control our own destiny. To be able to be who we want to be, do what we want to
do and have control. In modern usage freedom is defined as "The condition of being free of restraints"
, a restraint being "An influence
that inhibits or restrains; a limitation."
It is easy to see by definition alone that we are controlled. We do not have the right to do anything
that we desire - something I do not argue against. However, I do intend to show how we do not have the basic freedoms to control our own destiny
"For those who stubbornly seek freedom, there can be no more urgent task than to come to understand the mechanisms and practices of indoctrination.
These are easy to perceive in the totalitarian societies, much less so in the system of 'brainwashing under freedom' to which we are subjected and
which all too often we serve as willing or unwitting instruments."
First before I can display this, I have to describe what I see as constraints which do not inhibit our person. These constraints are ones that protect
the population from the actions of another an example of these regulations are things such as laws against murder, rape and assault. However, I do
wish to display the difference between these and drugs [even though I do not support full legalisation]. If the result is harm upon an innocent
person, be it child or bystander in the street, these are laws which are acceptable in a "free" society.
Secondly I have to define what, Social Control is. It refers to "social mechanisms" that regulate individual and group behaviour, in terms of
punishment and reward. The two types of ‘social control’ are formal, such as laws as statutes, rules and regulations. It is controlled and
regulated by Government and uses institutions such as the Police Force and Judiciary to enforce their view - punishing with fines and prisons. The
second is informal, rules which are not openly stated, these rules are expressed through custom, norms, and mores using informal sanctions such as
criticism, disapproval, guilt and shaming for a wider audience to see.
Deviance is behaviour that is a recognized violation of primarily informal control, however in the extreme cases it is also breaking accepted formal
rules. Many people break norms daily because sub-cultures all have their own rules on what is acceptable and what isn't. An example of this is
swearing around your grandparents, compared to your friends. For many people they would not swear in front of their grandmother, through the controls
placed upon them through criticism and shaming, however when compared with their actions around their friends it is unlikely they would also be shamed
This displays how minor deviance actually is, each human being has different accounts of acceptable behaviour and sometimes this can clash with the
formal regulations. An example of this is drugs, many people view drugs as a recreational behaviour and not as anything else - however the Government
has decided that things such as coc aine are not to be taken by any of these individuals. In this case the Government has decided that this man
is a deviant - if he is ever found out.
And thirdly I have to display which freedoms I am talking of, these are:
- Absence of political restraints.
- Freedom of Speech.
- Freedom for Religious Practice.
- Freedom of the Press.
- Protection from False Imprisonment.
- Freedom of Information.
- Freedom of education
- Freedom of thought.
- Economic Freedom.
- Freedom to protect ourselves, property and family.
In modern society, especially European ones, I wish to display how we have lost these
In any democratic society, the principle boils simply down to it being the "will" of the people. If they so desire to vote for a person than that
person is the one who is elected into office - or that many members of that persons party is elected into office. While political parties out
outlawed, this limit’s the powers we have to vote for them. It infringes on basic rights for us to decide which cause we agree with and can force
people away from the political process and to the extreme fringe. 
Freedom of speech is something we all need, on ATS, I find it odd that we have people wishing to limit the views that others can have. In fact,
several times I have seen them call for certain views to be outlawed - this also groups in with freedom of thought. If we do not allow people to have
their say, to leave it down to the Government to create formal regulations instead of the people controlling them through an informal process.
Freedom of Religion goes almost hand in hand with speech, we should be able to practice any religion and follow the codes that it sets down as long as
we do not intentionally harm another human being, secondly no religion should be given status over another. 
Protection from false imprisonment is something I feel strongly about, working in the British Criminal Justice System, my job is based around making
sure people who are innocent stay out of prison and those who are guilty are punished. However over the last few years I have seen a wave of abuse
creeping up over the United Kingdom, the first was Belmarsh  and more recently the newer Anti-Terrorism law. For nearly 800 years their was one
thing that was certain in "democratic" legal systems, that was habeas corpus
. The right for a prison to be placed before a court, in a swift
manor. This is all changing right before our eyes - with each passing year - along with it go one of our basic freedoms.
Freedom of Information and Education go hand in hand, there is an old saying that history should never be repeated
. However, we are now seeing
this happen. Our Government do not disclose information of their actions - years after they were taken. They keep hidden what our
which we employ, get involved with and they glorify our history. We no longer learn about the problems and mistakes of the passed - nor do we get the
option to learn about such things. Resulting in the risk of us allowing them to happen once more.
Economic freedom is something many of us take for granted. We feel as though we can gain any job if we work hard enough, raise to the top of our
profession and so on and so fourth…however this isn’t the truth. Take an example of property law in the United Kingdom. The Local Government
Finance Act of, 1992 introduced something known as "Council Tax". This works off of an idea that by living in a property or owning
you have to pay the state a certain amount of money as upkeep. If you do not pay the state, they can punish you by imprisonment or even removing you
from the property [although this has yet to happen].In essence this is a tax on your right to own property. If you do not pay it the Government can
over-rule you and take your property from you. One of the basic ideas of economic freedom is your right to own and this infringed directly upon it.
The freedom to protect ourselves is an issue still under fierce debate by many sectors. On one hand the complete removal of firearms from a Nation
would result in less firearm death, it leaves people open to abuse from the State. If the state have nothing to fear they have no basis on which you
can control them outside of the voting process - which is becoming more and more fraudulent.
Although at the present moment we are only seeing these rights be taken away from us slowly the Government is beginning to take over from society.
They are beginning to create the norms, values, etc and take over informal punishment through use of the media onto people. Public shaming of drug
addicts, drunks and vandals are common place and has allowed the media to create a victim industry. Through the use of this and legislation they are
shaping us and in my view point they are shaping us for the removal of even more rights and we as a Society are allowing it. It might not be my
generation but before the death of my children, I see the once proud Western Nation’s becoming a Police State. Something none of us should allow to
[edit on 30/10/2005 by Odium]
[edit on 30-10-2005 by Nerdling]
[edit on 11/1/05 by FredT]
[edit on 11/1/05 by FredT]