Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Balance of Freedom and Order

In Arthur Miller's introduction to the Crucible, Miller bluntly states that it is impossible for a balance to be struck between order and freedom in any society. Miller's Crucible clearly supports his argument, as Salem, the story's setting, is dominated by order. Both order and freedom are vital aspects of a society, keeping it organized while giving people power and therefore a reason to be in that certain society. In many instances within our society today, we can still see occurrences which result from an overpowering of either freedom or order. Although strict order may create an idealistic community, even by granting the greatest believe of possessed freedom, a balance can never be reached between the oppression caused by order and the sense of opportunity resulting from freedom, explaining why our society will never be entirely, internally at peace.

In Miller's Crucible, Salem's destruction is a result of an overpowering of order. In Salem, if anyone does not oblige to the strict order of their Puritan society, they will be accused as worshipers of the Devil. In the story, a group of girls is caught conjuring in the woods. The girls attest to seeing the Devil and also seeing women with him who are current members of their society. Because these women are accused as worshiping the Devil, Salem has no choice but to hang these women, as worshiping the Devil is intolerable to Salem's puritanical society. Salem's overuse of order results in their society to be based on lies which members precariously threw out as to protect themselves. In Salem's order, however, there is also an instance of freedom. The girls had the freedom to immediately shift blame on to other women of their society. The girls were not punished for conjuring the Devil as they rightfully should have been, and many innocent women were hanged in Salem's attempt to assure its order. Clearly, the imbalance between freedom and order in Salem resulted in total societal destruction.

In our society today, the imbalance between order and freedom seems to be present greater than it ever has before with the issues related to police murdering the innocent. The occurrence in Ferguson is a prefect example of this imbalance. On August 9th, Michael Brown was shot seven to eight times by Officer Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri. Michael Brown was allegedly robbing a convenience store and upon seeing Wilson, he surrendered with his hands in the air. Even though Brown surrendered, Wilson shot Brown a multitude of times which many see is an unjust abuse of power. Many believe shooting unarmed Brown was and action completely out of proportion. This is an example of the imbalance between freedom and order because Wilson, a policeman and enforcer of order, was given too much freedom, the freedom to take a life whenever he thought was necessary. Many instances across the United States are similar to this situation in Ferguson, supporting why critics believe that the people who enforce order in this country have a supererogatory amount of freedom. As a result of the Michael Brown shooting, many members of Ferguson began violent protests, setting fires to cars and destroying buildings. Its is evident that the imbalance of freedom and order still exists today and is the cause of societal destruction.

Order and freedom are both necessary aspects of all societies. A certain amount of oppression must be enforced while giving an equal amount of freedom, or societal destruction will result. This is supported by the Crucible, where Salem experiences destruction as a result of its overuse of order and misuse of freedom. In Ferguson this year, Michael Brown's death illustrates the existing imbalance of freedom and order as the enforcers of order are given too much freedom. Both the Crucible and Ferguson result in internal desolation, confirming the urgency of the need to crete a balance between freedom and order, before another society follows the unfortunate path of Salem and Ferguson.

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