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Word Count: 1,060
Liberty is one of the greatest ideas ever to occur naturally John Stuart Mills approach to liberty is freedom to do anything except harm others because that is an infringement on that persons liberty While people cannot hurt anyone else they can hurt themselves because it is their liberty If people act on their liberty and harm themselves then society can do nothing to stop them If society acts then it is unwanted paternalism meaning no adult should father another adult The first argument against Mill is that people that harm themselves are acting like children The second argument is that these people are dragging society down by wasting their lives The third argument is that these people are bad examples and the worst kind of role models that society needs Mill refutes all of these arguments without undermining his own position by using human nature as his best argument The first argument is that any person that harms himself or herself is acting like a child because they are not dealing with their emotions in an adult way The harm can be anything from drug use to purposefully spilling of ones own blood Even suicide can be one of the harms that Mill would allow a person to do to himself or herself Because these persons are acting childishly and not contributing to society critics of Mill say that this fact alone is enough to limit their liberty Mill refutes this argument with the simplest of observations Adults are not children Children are small of stature mind and cannot live without their parents A child is not allowed to harm itself because their parents limit their liberty so that they will grow up in such a way that they will be productive members of society Mill says that the parent-child relationship is quite different from the Adult-Society Relationship Society cannot choose the best course of action for an adult because only that person knows
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