“Perfect Society”

https://philosophynow.org/issues/73/What_Would_Make_The_Best_Society

“The perfect society would be one in which everybody got whatever they wanted.” One of the values that the author believes an ideal society has is the ability for everyone to achieve what they want by working equally as hard for it. The author believes that since a “perfect” society can’t actually be achieved because everyone does not think the same, therefore everyone cannot get what they want all the time. The author believes the next best thing is the “best possible society”, in which everything would be done so it was the “average” of everyones ideals. For example, the amount of hours that should be worked in a day would not be answered the same by everyone so to ensure that everyone is getting the “best possible” or “least bad” society, the average working hours in a day should be the mean of everyone’s ideal working hours in a day. The author believes that these values are not prevalent in today’s society, however he believes that we can work towards it. I agree with the author and believe that I’m living the same society as he is. An example of our society moving towards this “best possible” society is the democratic election of leaders, because we able to have a say in political matters “and as our administrations become more transparent and accountable, populations are able to exert greater pressure on their governments to act more in line with the collective will”.

Plato described a perfect society as one where everyone lived harmoniously and without the fear of violence. The quote from the article Plato, Republic excerpts states “what the philosopher-kings do is construct a political system- including primarily a system of socialization and education- that will distribute the benefits of their specialized knowledge of the good among the citizens at large.” This quote reveals that a system will be created benefiting citizens education. Plato has great ideas and I think he would agree with this authors ideal society.

Citation:
“What Would Make The Best Society?” Philosophy Now: a magazine of ideas, philosophynow.org/issues/73/What_Would_Make_The_Best_Society

Mohammed, team Vulcan

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Let’s strive for a Perfect Society

Philip Gefter, the author of the article Portrait of American Paradises, Mostly Lost does not believe that a perfect society exists. He writes about a photographer named Joel Sternfeld who has been taking pictures of alleged ‘Utopian Communities’ across the county for at least twelve years.
According to the article there have been at least six hundred ‘perfect utopian societies’ between 1810 and 1850 alone. More utopias were founded in the 1960’s and the 1990’s. Yet, the article continues, the citizens of the United States of America still keep trying to develop a perfect community.
“The ‘perfect society’ may be a figment of the idealist’s imagination, but from the years of the republic, many Americans have tried to give those ideals a tangible form, organizing their lives and those of their neighbors in a variety of social experiments.”
The article then talks about many utopian society experiments, both religious and secular in nature that took place throughout history. The photographer, Joel Sternfeld, took pictures of many societies and found that the perfect society does not actually exist. The photographer was finally told, “Picture an ideal world and take a photograph of that.” Because while a perfect society doesn’t exist the idea of one most certainly does. There is no such thing as a perfect society because what one group of people would consider perfect would not be perfect for another group.
I agree with Mr. Sternfeld and Philip Gefter and I believe that I live in the same society. Everyone has a different opinion and a different idea of what a perfect society would entail and therefore one utopian society can not exist.
Xenophon and Plato would have also agreed with this article as they do not believe a perfect society exists either. According to them, neither the Spartan society or a democracy is an ideal society as they each have their own problems and therefore there is no such thing.
“As a result they begin to make laws and covenants; and what the law commands they call lawful and just…It is between the best and the worst.” (Plato’s Republic 354a)
Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a perfect society but it is the American ideal to keep trying and to strive to become as perfect as we can be. There may not be a perfect society but we can try to build a society that is as close to perfect as we can make it.

Hinda, Team Mars

Gefter, Philip. “Portraits of American Paradises, Mostly Lost. ” New York Times,18 Sept. 2005,p.AR32 (L).New York State Newspapers, go.galegroup.com.central. ezproxy.cuny.edu. Web. 2 Oct. 2017.

 

 

 

 

 

Trouble in Hong Kong

kallipolis

Alan Wong, the author of the article, “Three Young Democracy Advocates in Hong Kong Are Sentenced to Prison” reported trouble brewing in the political system in the city of Hong Kong. Joshua Wong, Nathan Law, and Alex Chow were sentenced to prison for six to eight months because of their involvement in Hong Kong’s democracy movement. These three argue that their city needs more political freedom and freer elections, their fellow protestors also agree that the Chinese government is becoming too involved in their political orientation. Before his sentencing to prison, the face of the democracy movement, Joshua Wong claimed interview that “the government wanted to stop us from running in elections, and directly suppress our movement.” His claims were later proven correct as originally they would have only received community service but after the local Beijing government demanded their sentencing be harsher they each got longer sentences. And even though because of their sentencing these three advocates won’t be able to run in elections, they still stand united that Hong Kong would be better suited with a democratic system.

This relates to our current reading in Classics about the Republic by Plato, because in both of these settings the individuals are looking for their ‘ideal society.’ The author of this article seemed more for democracy than against it, it could be argued that the  reason for this, could be that the author doesn’t believe that an ideal society could be under Communist rule. Which would mean that the author is highly in favor of a democratic rule. In this instance, I think that I live in a similar society as this person, where someone of higher power is in control of our freedom. I think that Plato would have argued that they are in need of rules or law to equivocate the stronger power, which in this case is China. From the perspective of Glaucon, found in book 2, page 37, “the ones who lack the power to do it and avoid suffering it-decide that it is profitable to come to an agreement with each other neither to do injustice nor to suffer it.”

Article Used:

  1. Wong, Alan. “Three Young Democracy Advocates in Hong Kong Are Sentenced to Prison.” New York Times, 18 Aug. 2017, p. A7(L). New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&it=r&id=GALE%7CA500925562&asid=ee57bb4fe60242a101cca4763e94bf09. Accessed 4 Oct. 2017

 

 

Trumps America…

Is there such as a perfect society? Can we all live perfectly in harmony and peace? We as humans of this world will forever strive for greatness. Perfection, impurity: an ideal society where everything is lush and pure. We want all there is to life. Whether its perfection through wealth or well-being, we want it. We want a world of peace and unity, however we all have different interpretation of perfection and therefore it divides us.

The first article “The Dreamers Need a Vote, Not Talk” speaks on the recent actions by current President of the United States Donald J Trump and his decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) in an effort rid of all Non-Americans. This has been the way of action by the president in the past few months. It is as he says “the way to an ideal America”: an ideal society for those who are actually privileged to be in it. In this article the author is speaking on the efforts that can be made to correct this wrong and make this nation and simultaneously the world a more ideal one. Pass a law! The author makes it evident that they feel the lack of inclusion of Non-Americans and illegals is not what makes an ideal history. “I have zero patience for empty virtue signaling on this,” Susan Hennessey of Lawfare tweeted, in response to Rubio. “You’re a member of Congress. Don’t tell us how sad and pious you are; pass a law.” He speaks on how he hopes the nation can become whole: Congress should pass a law quickly, given the uncertainty plaguing Dreamers.” And makes it clear that those values are lacking in the present society and I agree with him. I too as we all do live in this modern America. “Trumps America”: a America that refuses to focused on the dreamers, immigrants and all those that make this country great. It creates great divide and I personally see us as America butting heads in the near future.

Therefore based on the reading, I would best say Plato would not agree with Trumps America. Text from our readings that best supports this claim: “So, since gods are good, they are not—as the masses claim—the cause of everything. Instead, they are a cause of only a few things that happen to human beings, while of most they are not the cause. For good things are fewer than bad ones in our lives. Of the good things, they alone are the cause, but we must find some other cause for the bad ones, not the gods.” Our society is one that further separating us from a perfect society and begs the question again, is there such as a perfect society. NO!

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/06/opinion/daca-dreamers-congress.html

IdealSociety,CLAS4, Plato, Xenophon

Ideal Society Doesn’t Need Feminism

“We should not have feminists…We shouldn’t have feminism in society.”

This was said by a leading Bollywood actress Kangna Ranaut. While at a glance, this statement seems shocking and controversial, especially coming from a woman, the meaning is actually quite different. It might be misunderstood as though she was speaking against gender equality but it is quite the opposite.  In the interview, Ranaut goes on further to say that “feminism is…a sorry state to be in any society. The gender equality should be there, where feminist doesn’t need to act like a medicine on inequality.” She believes that in an ideal society, there shouldn’t be any feminists because gender equality should already be established and not be something to have to fight for. Gender equality in an ideal society should be given freely, instead of having to fight to regain an obvious right. She further goes on to claim that in Indian society it is lacking, especially in the entertainment industry where actresses do not speak out such controversial issues because it would affect their image and career. Ranaut believes as a citizen, her voice should be “free from all baggage” that comes with her being a woman or an actress.

This is a common issue worldwide, but especially in the Eastern countries. Countries like Bangladesh, where I am from are still far behind in terms of gender equality than in Western countries.  Women are generally restricted to their household roles as daughters, sisters, and mothers.  Xenophon would have agreed with this role as he approved of Spartan principles that believe “motherhood to be the most  important function of freeborn women.” Aristotle further goes on to state that ” [women] were utterly useless and caused more confusion than an enemy.” Xenophon believed women to be valuable only because they can produce sons and Aristotle believed they are useless regardless. These views from the Ancient world can be seen in various modern societies to a certain extent.

Xenophon and Aristotle would have absolutely disregarded opinion like Kangna Ranaut’s. Not only because it goes against their belief, but because it’s the opinion of a woman, to begin with. But I absolutely agree with Ranaut that in an ideal society there wouldn’t be any feminists because there would be no need to fight for gender equality. it would be just there. Our society is not ideal, as many are still fighting for this. But as Ranaut, many others such as I hope to see a society which would not need feminism.

IANS. “Kangana Ranaut Rues ‘Sorry State’ of Feminism, Says an Ideal Society Wouldn’t Need Feminists.” Firstpost, 16 Sept. 2017, http://www.firstpost.com/entertainment/kangana-ranaut-rues-sorry-state-of-feminism-says-an-ideal-society-wouldnt-need-feminists-4049663.html. Accessed 23 Sept. 2017.

Masuma, Team Mercury

 

Utopia or Extremism?

In the country of Pakistan, power is gained through military or land. Without either, you’re likely a peasant or a servant. These peasants make around 25$ a month and are subject to the landlords they work for. This system hasn’t changed since Pakistan’s independence in 1947. Although Pakistan is transitioning into a democracy since 2008, little to no real change has occurred. This is where terrorism and extremists enter the picture. Many have grown tired of this unfair system, where your path in life is almost guaranteed depending on which social class you’re born into. In an article by Sabrina Tavernise in the New York Times, a specific religious extremist group is detailed. This group is compared to early Communists in Russia and are said to force their ideology down the elite’s throats. The extremists, similarly to Russian revolutionaries, seem to value overthrowing the elite. They believe power should be distributed to all and violence is necessary to bring about change. All revolutions in history have been violent and in order to change the status quo. The ones starting the revolution have always been seen as extremists and been rejected by those in power. The extremists in Pakistan are no different, however their goals are unknown so they are simply spreading violence at the moment. Xenophon, who praised Sparta’s discipline, would support these Pakistani extremists. Xenophon was a fan of Sparta’s way of life, even though they treated their slaves terribly. Sparta’s view on violence and authority can be compared to Stalin’s dictatorship. Crushing all dissent and using violence to have people conform to a specific view of society is a technic both have used. If Pakistani extremists are as described in the article, then Xenophon would be intrigued by their motives.

-Ahmed, Team Mars

Tavernise, Sabrina. “From rural Pakistan, tales of a hidden world lived and shared.” New York Times, 25 July 2009, p. A11(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA204397896&it=r&asid=bb58caa7fbcc87d36c72ea4bd3aa731c. Accessed 22 Sept. 2017.

AudenHorae, www3.dbu.edu/mitchell/audenhor.htm. Accessed 22 Sept. 2017.

 

What Is Ideal in the School System?

The author of “SCHOOL DISASTERS” in the New York post confronts the flaws of the educational system. More specifically the difference between the performance of black students and white students. His ideal school system is one where each race of students achieve at the same level whether or not they reach high scores. This way there is no one to blame for the lack of achievement. Not the teachers who are unable to raise the grades of their students, or the students who refuse to put in an effort. Their parents won’t be blamed for not preventing the issue and lastly, society won’t be blamed. In a world where everyone worked at the same pace and achieved the same way, there is nothing to make a comparison to. The educational system would be equal.

“While “educators” are quick to seize upon the defects of students, parents, and society, as if that automatically vindicates the schools, the fact is that if our public schools had perfect students, perfect parents, and a perfect society, these schools would still be failing… ”

However, I don’t agree with the claims made by Sowell. If every student in the society were to achieve at the same rate it would not equal a perfect society. I don’t think that Socrates or Plato would be satisfied with this form of perfect society. According to the philosophers, a Utopia can only be a Utopia if its members are happy which can only occur through “ethical intellectualism”. Limiting ourselves to only performing as well as our peers will not allow us the intellectual freedom to be happy.

 

Sowell, Thomas. School Disasters 

New York Post, 2003.

 

 

 

Capitalism the road to an ideal society?

“in a healthy society, the good of the individual can be dynamically integrated into the common good of the community.”

“For extreme freedom probably cannot lead to anything but a change to extreme slavery, weather in a private individual or a city”

The author of “Capitalism with a heart!?” believes that the values of an ideal society consist of the need of the people benefiting the society. The ideal society is “Capitalism with a heart”. What capitalism with a heart comes down to is that capitalism makes an ideal society. with a strong economic system the rest of humanity continues to prosper. The author believes that these values are currently lacking in today’s society. The author believes that today’s society has to evolve. The main flaw in capitalism today is that the building block of it consists of the adult wanting to pursue their own personal interest. I have to agree with the author and say that if the economy is doing well and everyone is benefiting from it that leads to a happier community and the society as a whole doing better. Capitalism can’t be thought of as a form of religion. People tend to take advantages and use Capitalism as an excuse to what they want. That’s what makes capitalism so hard to master. Plato would agree that those with power will use the system as a way to benefit themselves. Plato would agree with capitalism with a heart because its meant to have everyone benefit which means a society with no one suffering.

http://go.galegroup.com.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu:2048/ps/retrieve.do?tabID=T003&resultListType=RESULT_LIST&searchResultsType=SingleTab&searchType=BasicSearchForm&currentPosition=5&docId=GALE%7CA494584696&docType=Article&sort=Relevance&contentSegment=&prodId=PPDS&contentSet=GALE%7CA494584696&searchId=R1&userGroupName=nysl_me_brookcol&inPS=true

#IdealSociety #CLAS4 #Plato #Xenophon

Andrew- Team Zeus

Ideal Is Not Real

What do you value the most in life? Some say money, family, love, luck, but students from Al Noor school may want something different, perhaps idealistic. Susan Sachs, author of The 2 Worlds of Muslim American Teenagers, states, “Their ideal society would follow Islamic law and make no separation between religion and state.” In other words, the ideal life the author is portraying has no boundary between religion law and state law. Contemporary society is so diverse that incorporating religion into our law would be spurious because the United States is a melting pot of different people with different traditions. The society where racism is still a big factor is no help to keep peace with other regions of the world. I have similar views and experiences as these students where they confronted racism through out their days. Being a Muslim teenager in the United States is pretty easy, only if you accept the fact that people will ALWAYS have something negative to say against the religion you follow.

Based on the reading, I can conclude that Plato would not tolerate such hate living inside our communities. The hate that lives upon the people are created by the people themselves, the racism we face today is enforced by the people and nobody else. For example, “So, since gods are good, they are not—as the masses claim—the cause of everything. Instead, they are a cause of only a few things that hap- pen to human beings, while of most they are not the cause. For good things are fewer than bad ones in our lives. Of the good things, they alone are the cause, but we must find some other cause for the bad ones, not the gods.” In other words, humanity is the cause of such dark emotions not the gods; separation of people based on their culture and tradition is just an effect of these long-lasting negative emotions. I don’t think that all persons consist of these negative emotions, but majority of the society fear Islamic communities. Pointing fingers at the Islamic nations for every catastrophic events the United States faced cannot help ease the ongoing conflict with the society—government and Muslims.

Sachs, Susan. “The 2 Worlds of Muslim American Teenagers.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 6 Oct. 2001
http://www.nytimes.com/2001/10/07/nyregion/a-nation-challenged-muslims-the-2-worlds-of-muslim-american-teenagers.html?mcubz=3

-Amirjon, Team Juno

 

The Pitfalls of Communism

The author of the article “Paradise lost: Can mankind live without its Utopias?” believes that in the value that society should be able to realize that no system is perfect and Utopia can never exist. In modern times a Utopia is often considered a perfect place where nothing ever can go wrong and everything is good. Communism is often described as a utopian form of society where everyone is equal and everyone has everything they need. Sadly this is not the case, as resources are finitely limited but human wants are infinite. Communism on a small scale i.e. a group of 100-150 people in a small area are easy to satisfy but as the population linearly increases the needs match however the wants grow exponentially.

The author does believe we lack that value not only in society but in morality. I would have to agree with the author in the fact that no society or system is perfect and that we will always find a mistake in every idea, act and system that we do. I do be believe that I live in the same society as this author as I often see it every day. I live in NYC and my cousins who live out in Long Island 25 miles share two contrasting views. I see their lifestyle as hedonistic and Utopian while they view my lifestyle as dystopian. We both live under the same system of democracy and capitalism yet we live two separate and contrasting lives. They see current society as perfect and I view it as imperfect. I believe Plato and Xenophon would have agreed with my viewpoints. “He also gave him the right to receive certain parts of the beasts sacrificed, and assigned to him enough choice land in many of the outlanders’ cities to ensure him a reasonable competence without excessive riches.”

Rothstein, Edward. “Paradise Lost: Can Mankind Live without Its Utopias?” New York Times, 5 Feb. 2000. Web. 19 Sept. 2017.

Perfect Imperfections

It does not exist. A perfect society simply does not exist. Will It exist in the future? I am not very sure, but as of right now it does not exist. In the article, “ The Structure of Gratitude” by David Brooks, we find out about exactly what the title is: the structure of gratitude. Brooks clearly states, “If you think that human nature is good and powerful, then you go around frustrated because the perfect society has not yet been achieved.” Then he followed that with, if you hold the mindset that life is not that impressive and our goodness is spotty, then you’ll be amazed when life is sweet to you. Overall I think it is fair to say that Brooks wants us to not hold our expectations too high for the world. The reason being, if we do not expect too much when something extraordinary occurs we appreciate it all the more. Occurrences like this will ingrain in us a grateful mentality for the smaller things. I feel like Brooks strongly believe that gratitude is severely lacking in this society because in many accounts he reminds his readers that we live in a “capitalist meritocracy that encourages individualism…” Which means that it is encouraged for everybody to look out for themselves first before others. In relation to the article, in the reading “Xenophon and Aristotle,” it states, “…whereas nowadays there are some who even boast of their possessions. This corresponds to this society and how much it values individualism and when one becomes independent and does everything on their own it is very predictable that they would become very prideful of their accomplishments. #IdealSociety #CLAS4 #Plato #Xenophone  Izadora, Team Aphrodite

 

Citation:

Brooks, David. “The Structure of Gratitude.” New York State Papers, The New York Times, 18 July 2015, go.galegroup.com/ps/retrieve.do?tabID=T004&resultListType=RESULT_LIST&searchResultsType=SingleTab&searchType=BasicSearchForm¤tPosition=20&docId=GALE%7CA423329914&docType=Column&sort=Relevance&contentSegment=&prodId=SPN.SP01&contentSet=GALE%7CA423329914&searchId=R1&userGroupName=nysl_me_brookcol&inPS=true&authCount=1&u=nysl_me_brookcol. Accessed 18 Sept. 2017.

 

Women and The Society

In New York Times article, the writer Kamel Daoud writes about how Western women are attacked by the Arab migrants in Cologne, Germany. They have been sexually harassed which portrays sick relationship between men and women. Women are treated as sex machines and not given any respect in Germany. They are often killed and stoned.  The author seems to be against all these behaviors that treats women differently. The values that author believes the society to have are the respect and dignity towards women. He wants that the women should not be looked upon as a disrespect in the society but rather be treated as a special part of it. According to the author, these values are lacking in the western society in which they live because these days western women are raped and sexually harassed in Germany. There are certain restrictions imposed on their lifestyles as opposed to men. Men are the ones who kill or rape women for fantasies and they should be blamed for that. However, they are not blamed rather women are blamed for bringing a disrespect to the society. The article states, ” In some places, women are veiled, stoned and killed; at a minimum, they are blamed for sowing disorder in the ideal society.” I don’t think I live in the same society as this because now women have equal rights as men. They are not disrespected and they have the potential to stand on their own feet and do something for themselves. If I compare the article to Xenophon, I would say that Xenophon would disagree with this kind of society where women are killed and raped. Xenophon always want his town’s people, both men and women, to be strong enough. In order to increase the population of the town, he provided physical training to women as that to men so that they can produce vigorous offsprings. In ‘Xenophon’s Constitution of the Lacedaemonians’ it says, “He believed motherhood to be the most important function of freeborn woman. Therefore,in the first place, he insisted on physical training for the female no less than for the male sex: moreover, he instituted races and trials of strength for women competitors as for men, believing that if both parents are strong they produce more vigorous offspring.” Therefore, ideal society according to Xenophon is where women are considered important part the society in contrast to the society in Germany  where women leads miserable life because they are women.

Gurleen Kaur, Team Venus

Daoud, Kamel, “Sexual Misery and Islam”. The New York Times, 14 February 2016.

Acceptance of Immigrants From Ancient to Modern Times

    The author believes that an ideal or perfect society is one free from hatred, and one of inclusion, acceptance, and fair and equal treatment of all of its citizens. This is supported by their use of the following quote from Philippe Couillard, the premier of Quebec; ”Our society is not perfect. None is. These demons are named xenophobia, racism, exclusion. They are present here. We need to recognize that and act together to show the direction we want our society to evolve.” I believe that the author finds that society is lacking in those values, as the article was written in response to a shooting targeting a mosque, and described Canada as “wounded.” I don’t live in the same society as this person, as we’re divided by a border. Although our countries are close, many of the things that people feel strongly about, like religious freedom, are seen very differently by the general voting public in each country, and each government approaches social issues very differently. However, I agree with much of what was said in the article. Societies need to acknowledge their flaws, move forward, and denounce all forms of bigotry. I’m not sure that Xenophon would agree with me entirely, as views like this generally weren’t held in Ancient Greece. However, Xenophon was banished from Athens and welcomed into Sparta, and spent around twenty years there. He didn’t erase their history—”There were alien acts in former days, and to live abroad was illegal; and I have no doubt that the purpose of these regulations was to keep the citizens from being demoralized by contact with foreigners.”, but he also pointed out how much things had changed—“and now I have no doubt that the fixed ambition of those who are thought to be first among them is to live to their dying day as governors in a foreign land.”
-Maggie, Team Hermes

Only “Australians” in Parliament

In the article, “A question of identity in Australia” the author, Waleed Aly writes about how “the Australian constitution prohibits dual citizens from sitting in Parliament.”The article gave multiple cases where a senate had dual citizenship without knowledge, leading them to resign from their position. For example, senate Larissa Waters, who was Canadian citizen without knowing she was a citizen since she left Canada as a baby. The author believes that being a dual citizen should not affect their ability to be apart of the Parliament in an ideal society. “Modern Australia has multiple, simultaneous identities, whether expressed in government documents or not… it’s not our dual citizens but our Constitution that’s un-Australian.” The law should not define a person’s identity, but it’s their background, since Australians are a blend of different nationalities.  

I agree with the statement “ it’ not our dual citizens but our constitution that’s un-Australian”because it’s similar to the US as Americans are defined by their diversity and there isn’t a “true American”. Compared to the Spartan constitution, Xenophon would disagree as he would want perfection and the law should be followed as it describes their identity. “In order that the boys might never lack a ruler even when the Warden was away, he [Lycurgus] gave authority to any citizen who chanced to be present to require them to do anything that he thought right, and to punish them for any misconduct.”(2.10)

Source Citation 

Aly, Waleed. “A question of identity in Australia.” New York Times, 5 Sept. 2017, p. NA(L). New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA503308261&it=r&asid=ee124df4ef032f239c5169d24e9276fc. Accessed 18 Sept. 2017.

Factors of a Perfect Society

There are several nations around the world that either know or learn how to speak English in order to regulate in a smooth manner. Foreign countries encourage their students practice speak English in order to further their education. In addition, many travel the world to receive an education in a country where English is the first language.

In the article “Nations in Asia give English their own flavorful quirks” the author writes“In their latest initiative to perfect society, Singapore’s leaders have begun the Speak Good English Movement — a campaign to eliminate a rough-and-ready patois known as ‘Singlish’ that has spread through their nation like a linguistic virus.” The author, Seth Mydans, simply describes the perspective of a perfect society in the eyes of Singapore’s leaders. They believe that getting rid of their ‘Singlish’ and learning how to properly speak English is what will make their nation a perfect and better place to live in. Singapore leader’s seem to assume that the ability to speak proper English is a lacking value on their road to prosperity. I don’t think I live in the same society as the people in Singapore. Here in the United States, English is considered the first language and is encouraged but there are still several people that do not know how to speak proper English, which is fine. Although English is the world’s dominant language and is spoken almost everywhere, I do not agree with the idea of a perfect society being one that speaks perfect English, there are a lot more factors that should be taken into consideration while describing a ‘perfect society’.

In ‘Xenophon’s Constitution of the Lacedaemonians’ it says “When a boy ceases to be a child, and begins to be a lad, others release him from his moral tutor and his schoolmaster: he is then no longer under a ruler and is allowed to go his own way” based off of this, I believe that Xenophon would have disagreed with the idea that speaking English is what creates a perfect society. The text states that anyone should be free and feel free to do things their own way. Speaking a certain language shouldn’t be required in order to make society appear as perfect.

Kindness: The Underdog of Civilization

In David Brooks’s “The Structure of Gratitude”, Brooks acknowledges the underdog of kinship and society: kindness. He asserts that our current society values “individualism and utilitarianism, ambition and pride”, breeding a people who are self-sufficient and consequentially ungrateful. While this society is conducive to a capitalist and merit-based system it tends to undermine the phenomenons of trust and brotherhood formed through acts of kindness and empathy, describing gratitude as “a form of social glue.” A society, therefore, premised on kindness rather than an “every man for himself” dogma appears to be Brooks’s personal utopia. Brooks seems to believe that these values are present in modern society, but are hard to recognize by those of us who have been raised on the dog-eat-dog principles of our culture. Rather than being pervasive throughout society as a whole, Brooks believes these ideal social values reside with individuals who are “grateful dispositionally”.

“If you think that human nature is good and powerful, then you go around frustrated because the perfect society has not yet been achieved. But if you go through life believing that our reason is not that great, our individual skills are not that impressive, and our goodness is severely mottled, then you’re sort of amazed life has managed to be as sweet as it is. You’re grateful for all the institutions our ancestors gave us, like the Constitution and our customs, which shape us to be better than we’d otherwise be. Appreciation becomes the first political virtue and the need to perfect the gifts of others is the first political task.” This quote from Brooks’s article indicates that we are too ambitious in our views of an ideal society. He seems to say that rather than tackling the impossible task of creating a perfect society, we can modify our own selves. If our anticipations are too high and our ambitions too grand we will constantly be disappointed by the less than spectacular outcomes they evoke. But if we look at life practically and expect the expected we will constantly be surprised by acts not driven by self-interest. Brooks asserts that this is not the typical attitude of our everyday civilian, but  “stands in counterbalance to the mainstream threads of our culture”. I do believe I live in the same society as Brooks as I too see our high expectations as a people and our lack of gratitude as a consequence. I agree with his argument, but do not feel that we must completely lower our ambitions to become grateful as a civilization.

Xenephon would likely disagree with this. In his Constitution of the Lacedaemonians Xenephon claims, “…the girls who are destined to become mothers and are brought up in the approved fashion, live on the very plainest fare, with a most meagre allowance of delicacies. Wine is either witheld altogether, or, if allowed them, is diluted with water. The rest of the Greeks expect their girls to imitate the sedentary life that is typical of handicraftsmen — to keep quiet and do wool-work. How, then, is it to be expected that women so brought up will bear fine children?” This depicts his belief that the nurturing of low ambitions and expectations is not conducive to an ideal society. While these women might be more grateful for the acts of kindness they lack in their own lives they will be ill-fitted to usher in a better posterity, unwinding the very fabric of society.

Brooks, David. “The Structure of Gratitude.” New York Times, 28 July 2015, p. A23(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA423329914&it=r&asid=9f8d2da4a8d3b3b05ceea871e73c0874. Accessed 18 Sept. 2017.

Walk Your Dog and Don’t Have a Heart Attack!

“In an ideal society, where people are actually listening to physician recommendations, you wouldn’t need pets to drag people outside.” This is a quote from New York Times article Owning a Dog is Linked to Reduced Heart Risk. The author is quoting Dr. Richard Krasuski, whom is stating that in an “ideal society” people wouldn’t need to rely on their pets to become active if they just listened to their doctors. I believe that the author agrees with this statement because it supports their argument that dogs may have a connection to healthy cardiovascular systems.

The authors perfect world is one where humans are healthy without having to rely on their pets to keep them healthy. I do not agree with the author because I feel that as long as humans are healthy and find a way that helps them stay healthy whether is be because of their pets or any other method that they use than that is fine for me. It may not necessarily be the “ideal” way of doing things but it still works.

I believe the Xenophon would have agreed with the author because he believed in people doing  what they are taught, “Because in all cases men punish a learner for not carrying out properly whatever he is taught to do” (2.8). People are taught to listen to their doctors and are told what to do in order stay healthy and if they do not do that then their “punishment” in this case would be heart disease. And so if people did what they are told and did not use dogs to stay healthy, then we would be living in an “ideal” world.

Luisa Reynoso, Team HERMES

Citations:

O’Connor, Anahad. “Owning a dog is linked to reduced heart risk.” New York Times, 9 May 2013, p. A14(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA329238110&it=r&asid=cdceaa2bde2a4690bda15970c9a316ed. Accessed 18 Sept. 2017.

 

An Imperfect Society: NFL Edition

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A Utopian society can be seen as an ideal and perfect society in which everyone lives in harmony and everything is done for the good of its citizens. We, however, do not live in that type of society nowadays. Not too long ago an incident occurred during the season opener of a professional football game that went against a Utopian society. During the time of this incident there had been several equality and freedom issues that led Colin Kaepernick to refuse to rise for the national anthem that eventually led more football players to refuse to rise as well. In the article, “Protests Leaves N.F.L. Necessarily Uneasy”, it gives the viewpoint of the coach of Kaepernick and how he states, “I support our players when they want to see a change in society, and we don’t live in a perfect society,’ he said ‘On the other hand, we believe very strongly in patriotism in the N.F.L. I personally believe very strongly in that.” This gives evidence that the society we live in is far from perfect and suitable for certain adjustments when necessary.

The coach of Kaepernick, Goodell, believes that change can create the ideal society, as long as it doesn’t effect patriotism. The value that is lacking within the society is patriotism. Since this recently happened, I do think and I do agree that our society is far from perfect but there are changes that can be made.

I feel as though Plato would have agreed with the Kaepernick choice of not standing up during the national anthem. In the introduction it states that the Socratic dialogue philosophy consisted in questioning people about the conventionally recognized moral virtues that included piety, courage, and temperance. Kaepernick showed great courage in standing up for what he believed to be was the right thing to do.

Bryana DeLuca, Team Ares

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Macur, Juliet. “Protest Leaves N.F.L. Necessarily Uneasy.” New York Times, 8 Sept. 2016, p. B10(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA462768533&it=r&asid=1181ff22fc4dad61ac09244a14c3160d. Accessed 18 Sept. 2017

Another Failed Utopia

“They set about realizing Noyes’s vision of “Bible Communism,” believing that Christ had already made his Second Coming (“like a thief in the night,” as the Bible puts it), and that humans were thus living free of sin, with the responsibility to create a perfect world.

The pursuit of Perfectionism, as the doctrine was called, led to a number of unorthodox practices, notably “complex marriage” and “sexual communism,” which were essentially coinages for radical polyamory and free love. (Utopia is very good at rebranding existing human behaviors.) Underlying Oneida’s quirky sexual norms was, in fact, a set of deeply progressive beliefs in collective ownership and equality, notably for women.”

The Return of the Utopians

Akash Kapur

   

Throughout the many decades of the history of the United States there are “utopias”  that pop out every now and then. One of the most promising was a community called Oneida, named for the local native american tribe. Founded in 1848 by Vermont Preacher John Humphrey Noyes, the community was based on principles of “collective ownership”. There were no slaves as they didn’t like slavery and women had more freedom than most at the time. It wasn’t complete equality but they chose their own lovers and chose their own jobs. As these people broke off from society and created their own they didn’t believe that a typical society had what they needed. They believed that people should care more for the community than the individual. Parents were separated from their children so that they couldn’t form attachments that could be detrimental to the community. I don’t agree with this mindset and I’m glad that I don’t live in this kind of community. The concept of “sexual communism” actually isn’t that uncommon, it’s simply having multiple sexual partners and from the implication of it people don’t settle into relationships. The problem with this is that children are separated from their parents and that people who may have a functioning, stable marriage also separate. What happens to the children who are taken away? Who takes care of them? What about babies that come from the relationships take place? Does this separation have a negative physiological effect on the children? How they end up? We live in a society where children are a responsibility. The parents take care of them or if they can’t someone else does. I think that Oneida’s lack of familial instability leads to social instability.

 

“He believed motherhood to be the most important function of freeborn woman. Therefore,

in the first place, he insisted on physical training for the female no less than for the male

sex: moreover, he instituted races and trials of strength for women competitors as for

men, believing that if both parents are strong they produce more vigorous offspring.” [part 4]

 

Xenophon’s Constitution of the Lacedaemonians

Xenophon

Xenophon wouldn’t agree with this. Motherhood is very important part of spartan society so the separation of the children wouldn’t sit well with him. Also the lack of marriages would also sit uneasily with him. Unless one man asks another if his wife could birth him strong children men and women should be married and have strong children for Sparta’s future.

Kapur, Akash. “The Return of the Utopians.” The New Yorker, The New Yorker, 19 June 2017, http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/10/03/the-return-of-the-utopians. Accessed 18 Sept. 2017.

Fatema Islam
Team Jupiter

Create A Better School Environment

“While “educators” are quick to seize upon the defects of students, parents and society, as if that automatically vindicates the schools, the fact is that if our public schools had perfect students, perfect parents, and a perfect society, these schools would still be failing because of the three R’s that they do not teach – and the politically correct propaganda that they teach instead.”

Thomas Sowell the author of this article explains that no matter what way you look at it you can not have a perfect teaching method because there will always be a group of students that will blame everything on the teachers or on their parents and will never take the action upon themselves.  He had found statistics that there are always a group of students that just show no interest towards school and their classes but pay more attention to outside activities such as sports, entertainment, and hanging out with friends. This shows that students do not have their priorities straight and put this stress on the teacher or their parents and blaming their academic problems on them rather than themselves. Thomas Sowell had used John Ogbus’s book known as the “Black American Students in an Affluent Suburb” to back up his information. This book shows statistics of a study of the racial gap in students school performances . Ogbu had taken the test scores, and grades of the entire school and statistics showed that black students had been consistently behind the white students.  They have asked both black and white teachers what the reasons for this was and their answers were the same. They believed black people did not work as hard and did not put the same amount of effort in.

I believe that society will never be perfect because it is human nature for people to make mistakes. However just because people make mistakes, doesn’t mean that they can’t learn from them and the make the best out of their certain situation. I believe that not all students are on the same page in school, but as they mature and grow they will want better for themselves and eventually will pick themselves up.  Plato states “So, if you are willing, let’s first find out what sort of thing justice is in cities, and afterward look for it in the individual,to see if the larger entity is similar in form to the smaller one”. I feel like the author of this article and Plato are on the same page. The author found where students excelled in and how they could improve which is what Plato was saying to first find what is good, then employ it in the whole city or in the authors case the whole school.

“SCHOOL DISASTERS.” New York Post [New York, NY], 1 Mar. 2003, p. 17. New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA98268168&it=r&asid=4b8ed3bfbf5eafe283840645c5cb9ce5. Accessed 18 Sept. 2017.

 

Link:

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Achieving the Perfect Society

Many people have different views and opinions on achieving the perfect society. The basic idea of a perfect society would include no crimes, no government and each individual playing a role and contributing to the success of their society. Throughout history many people have had their input on what a perfect society would look like. In the article ” Gender Roles of a Perfect Society : the Oneida Community” explained how they did things differently and felt that their society was the best community for a person to live in. In the article it states, “Women were always seen as equals to men, unlike the traditional American ideas of the nineteenth century.” This was proof that in their society they did not assign roles to the population based on their gender. The women of their community were treated equally to the men of their society. Women in the Oneida community were allowed to hold any job they wanted such as a bookkeeper, business correspondents and etc. The Oneida Community believed women played a major role in the success of a perfect society.

However I feel that this would contradict with the ideas of Plato and Xenophon. Plato and Xenophon believed that everyone in a society should play a specific role. In Xenophon’s Constitution of the Lacedaemonians he states “He believed motherhood to be the most important function of freeborn women.” He explains that the main role of women would be to take care of the children and carry out the basic motherly duties. Contradicting the ideas from the Oneida Community he feels that its not right for women to have a choice to pursue any other career. Xenophon believed the only way to reach a perfect society is to assign and maintain roles to each person.

Naim Nuvel, Team Vulcan

Citation :

“Gender Roles of a Perfect Society: the Oneida Community.” GetMyEssay.com, 9 May 2017, getmyessay.com/essay-on-gender-roles-perfect-society-oneida-community/.

Ah, the American Paradise: We… aren’t there yet.

In the article “Portraits of American Paradises, Mostly Lost”, author Philip Gefter  states: “The “perfect society” may be a figment of the idealist imagination, but from the early years of the republic, many Americans have tried to give those ideals a tangible form, organizing their lives and those of their neighbors in a variety of social experiments.”  (Gefter, 1)

It may seem hard at first to see exactly what the meaning of a perfect society is to the author here.  To Philip perhaps, it is that a perfect society is simply an opinion of many minds that people come up with.  Perhaps Philip thinks that it just is a figment of imagination we are all capable of.  But he also chooses very specific studies to support his answer.  Throughout the article, Philip notes of people who made or studied “Utopian Societies” and all had the same idea.  They all similarly wanted to have equal balance in education, happiness, and also communes.  In doing so, I strongly don’t believe that the author finds them lacking in our society today.  When you look at the third paragraph in this article, you can see that there was a study finished not to long before this article was made, talking about a man who spent 12 years looking around the country for Utopian societies and taking photos of them, in which was to show what a utopia or “perfect society” might end up being.  I actually think that I don’t live in the same society as this person.  Why I feel that is because of how much bad stuff we talk about today.  All we ever do now as a society is talk about all the negative stuff going on in society, thus making us feel more and more upset and angry.  We no longer see nice fancy things as something to behold, but as something or rich and greed, even if the person who owns it is very generous and nice.  That being said, I will agree with the author on the note that a “Perfect society” can be seen as one of human imagination, and also that of which is one of something in equal and fair treatment for all.  All that is upsetting me is how far we are from it, and how the world around us is pushing us back further and further.  I feel that since then the article is meant to give off multiple impressions as to what a “perfect society” is portrayed or viewed by, I feel that Xenophon would have multiple opinions on this story.  Maybe he would be more positive to it when you look at how he portrays and talks about the Spartans in his stories.   Xenophon states that “They pride themselves on their humility, running instead of walking to answer any call, in the belief that, if they lead, the rest will follow along the path of eager obedience.” (Xenophon) when talking about the Spartans, specifically the soldiers.  Perhaps since this article offers multiple experiments people did to create or show a utopia/perfect society, I feel that Xenophon would like it because of his experience with other cultures.  He might have even wanted to add his example seeing as how he feels the Spartans in a way made their own little utopia.

#IdealSociety #CLAS4 #Plato #Xenophon

Gefter, Philip. “Portraits of American Paradises, Mostly Lost.” New York Times, 18 Sept. 2005, p. AR32(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA136301464&it=r&asid=b2bf48035b11e3ce80c938a3c254dafd. Accessed 18 Sept. 2017.

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Guns in Class?

 

 

140819-news21-k12-kasey_gun_10_33901b3a2cc46efdbb5976fcc53cd705.nbcnews-ux-2880-1000.jpg (1511×1000)The Second Amendment grants American citizens the right to bear arms and this amendment has caused debate between both sides of the political spectrum for years. One of the most controversial topics in United States politics is gun control and gun rights. After all the shootings, such as the Pulse Night Club Shooting and the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting, that have occurred over the past couple years, this debate has continued to heat up. On one side of the political spectrum, you have people and groups advocating for gun control laws. On the other side of the spectrum, you have people and groups, such as the National Rifles Association and its members, fighting to have no gun control laws and have everyone be able to buy a gun.

In an article from The New York Times, Morgan Smith talks about how some legislators what to allow guns in schools to protect teachers and students from shooters. This article was written shortly after the Sandy Hook Shooting. After the shooting, federal and state legislators were deciding what to do about gun fights and gun control. One idea suggested was from Texas legislators that stated that guns should be made more available and should be more available so teachers and other members of faculty couold protect themselves and others and prevent tragedies like Sandy Hook from happening again. This idea received many criticisms. Some who agree with the idea disagree on how to achieve it and some disagree and say that it distracts from the main issue of mental illness. One of the legislators who wanted to expand gun laws to allow guns on school campuses is Representative Debbie Riddle of Tomball. Riddle does agree that mental health does need to discuss, but she also states, “Are we going to be able to screen and determine everyone who is going to be a threat? Of course not…We are not a perfect society, and there is no way we can create perfect laws.” In this quotes, Riddle implies that a perfect society is one where we can prevent terrible tragedies like this from happening through preventative measures, like mental health screenings, and with laws that can help prevent tragedies from happening. Riddle believes that our society lacks this value because it is impossible to create perfect laws to prevent tragedies when society isn’t close to being perfect. I agree with this statement, our society is far from perfect and because of that we can’t make perfect laws, but more should be done to try to figure out how to prevent events like this from happening again. Unfortunately, society has not changed much in the past five years. We still look at these tragedies and wonder what more could we have done to prevent this. Also, after these tragedies happen, we grieve, we debate, and then we do nothing to prevent these terrible events from happening again. Even after the deaths of 20 children and six adults, nothing changed. Even after the deaths of 49 people at the Pulse Nightclub Shooting, nothing changed.

One person I think would agree with Riddle’s statement that since society isn’t perfect, we can’t make perfect laws is Plato. In his dialogue, The Republic, he states, “So, if you are willing, let’s first find out what sort of thing justice is in cities, and afterward look for it in the individual,to see if the larger entity is similar in form to the smaller one” (Plato 46). This quotes means that since the individuals of a city aren’t perfect, the city doesn’t have perfect justice and each city has it’s own, imperfect definition of justice. This supports Riddle’s claim because since cities and individuals aren’t perfect, there isn’t perfect justice or a perfect society, which means there can be no perfect laws made.

In his dialogue, Plato says, “Someone who has the power to do it (Justice), however—someone who is a real man—would not make an agreement with anyone, neither to do injustice nor to suffer it” (Plato 37-38). This quote means that you shouldn’t accept injustice or make others suffer injustices. I think that we shouldn’t just accept that these tragedies just happen. We should do everything in our power to prevent events like this. We shouldn’t wait for the next tragedy to occur so that the debate over gun control will get more attention. There should be stricter gun control laws so events like this don’t happen. We shouldn’t be arguing, we should be preventing these terrible events and the deaths that unfortuantely come with them.

Full Article

Citations:

CBS/AP. “Orlando Nightclub Shooting Victims’ Names Released.” CBS News, CBS Interactive, 12 June 2016, http://www.cbsnews.com/news/orlando-nightclub-mass-shooting-pulse-victims/.
 “Connecticut Shootings Fast Facts.” CNN, Cable News Network, 14 Dec. 2016, http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/07/us/connecticut-shootings-fast-facts/index.html.
 Murphy, Kate. “’F’ Is for Firearm: More Teachers Authorized to Carry Weapons in Classroom.” NBCNews.com, NBCUniversal News Group, 22 Sept. 2014, http://www.nbcnews.com/news/investigations/f-firearm-more-teachers-authorized-carry-weapons-classroom-n208946.

Smith, Morgan. “Lawmakers look to boost guns in school.” New York Times, 28 Dec. 2012, p. A19A(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA313191533&it=r&asid=4963e9e803df3db2b6cdeed9c11336b1. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

 

 

Society Should Be Equal

There is nothing in the world is perfect, but people always want to pursue perfection, so does the society. Since ancient times, women’s roles in the society were lower than the men, they were seen as wives who were intended to stay home and do all the housework. As the article IN MALE-DOMINATED KOREA, AN ISLAND OF SEXUAL EQUALITY mentioned, “In Seoul, women’s rights advocates complain that girls are still being trained to obey three men – father, husband and eldest son – and that the eldest son’s wife is still expected to live with her husband’s family and perform the household chores”. In fact, not only in Seoul, but throughout the world. Men were seen like in charging the society, only they have the ability to work, to earn money to support the family, women’s job is to cook, clean, and take care of children. But that is not how the “Perfect Society” like. If there is not equality between men and women, how can you expect the society to be equal? On the island of Korea, the author sees the sexual equality, “To judge by some studies, family relationships on the island are a model of sexual equality, compared with those on the mainland where the honeymooners will begin married life.” Such as Dr. Kim Yang Soon said, ” A woman can dive and farm and live by herself, but a man cannot do without a woman. ” women can do the same things as men do, they’ re no longer weak and under the men. The author believed that human society requires the division of labor between men and women, which has a biological and sociological basis, which form a ideal society.

Plato also agree that women and men should be equal,  “…and that men and women with the same natural abilities should receive the same education and training and do the same kind of work, including guarding and ruling.” that’s how a “perfect society” be formed and functions. Different doesn’t mean Unequal, women should be treated equally and have a bigger role than what other people thought women should have.

Citation

Dullea, Georgia. “IN MALE-DOMINATED KOREA, AN ISLAND OF SEXUAL EQUALITY.” New York Times, 9 July 1987. New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA176109327&it=r&asid=88242afdf2c83f8f6443a96859918a1c. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

Fully Commited

“The ideal society is like a family.”

The true nature of the world those who dwell in it can be changed into a peaceful lasting balance by simply following a set of ideals that benefit not only the one but the whole that take part. The author in this article writes that there are five virtues from ancient Confucianism that are needed in a society for those in it to live in complete harmony those virtues being benevolence, righteousness, rites, wisdom and faithfulness. The author writes that these are needed to show that these virtues could and should in some cases take the place of the current laws and norms of today society. He believes that today these types of ideas are somewhat understood but seem to be to annoying and tedious for people to follow in their everyday lives “All the virtues are (or at least seem) readily comprehensible, excerpts rites. To moderns, rites are either irksome or aesthetically pleasing; peripheral either way”. I do believe that we are in an age where the majority of people are losing interest in their respective religions for differing reasons the main one being like the author says the actual practises within are to irksome. It is highly unlikely that either Plato or Xenophon would have completely agreed with the teachings of Confucianism they might have agreed with the fact that you need complete commitment of everyone within their society in order for their community to endure. The Spartans constitution was an edict that could only be achieved through complete devotion to the rules and regulations that came with being born into their society. This connects to how the practise of Confucianism also teaches that its five virtues must be taught and followed by all in order for the true goal of harmony to be achieved. Even though the ends are completely different the means of both of these methods of life full an explict demand for dedication and devotion in order to succed.

#CLAS4  #Plato #Xenophon

Citations-

Hoffman, Michael. “The prosaic state of ancient Confucianism.” The Japan Times 16 Sept 2017, N.P japantimes.co.jp Web. 17 Sept 2017.

 

Feminism in a “Perfect Society”

Feminism is a widely debated topic among our youth today, and this topic continues to dominate headlines in innumerable societies struggling with equal rights for both genders. Emma Gross, author of “Reconstructing the liberal consensus on what is feminist” discusses the need for feminism to take a more liberal and idealistic approach if the movement for this realm of equal rights is to achieve any success in its objectives. She compares the feminist movement to others such as liberalist and social work movements, and emphasizes what a perfect society would look like with more rational approaches.

“For liberalism, the means to such a society were the application and extension of democratic behaviors predicated on constitutional principles. For American feminists, the means to a more perfect society was the extension of these principles to women.” – Emma Gross

Gross believes a perfect society should have the application of independent activities based on lawful ideologies, aims of the liberalist movement, extended to women, because women are still currently at a great disadvantage in obtaining alike opportunities to men. I do agree with the author on these inequalities since this issue has been prevalent for a long time, and seems likely to be capable of being rampant until this movement gets what it deserves, but I also agree with Gross’ position on the need to take a more realistic and general approach to the situation.

Xenophon would have agreed with these views, to some extent, that women should be given the same rights as men in an unwavering manner, but only in the most basic fashions, and not into a position of great power, for it being part of a perfect society. He compares the women of the Greek states to Lycurgus’ claiming “the girls who are destined to become mothers and are brought up in the approved fashion, live on the very plainest fare, with a most meagre allowance of delicacies. Wine is either withheld altogether, or, if allowed them, is diluted with water. The rest of the Greeks expect their girls to imitate the sedentary life that is typical of handicraftsmen — to keep quiet and do wool-work.” He then continues, claiming that Lycurgus’ approach was different – “He believed motherhood to be the most important function of freeborn woman. Therefore, in the first place, he insisted on physical training for the female no less than for the male sex: moreover, he instituted races and trials of strength for women competitors as for men, believing that if both parents are strong they produce more vigorous offspring.” Though these views may be minor objectives to that of feminist movements currently, the Greek historian still generally supports the equal division of rights to women. Additionally, this idea of equality expressed by Socrates’ disciple would have been thought of as a good fit for a perfect society in that particular time, and currently.

 

Daniel, Team Diana

 

Gross, Emma. “Reconstructing the liberal consensus on what is feminist.” Affilia Journal of Women and Social Work, vol. 13, no. 4, 1998, p. 389+. Communications and Mass Media Collection, go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=PPCM&sw=w&u=cuny_broo39667&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA21235077&it=r&asid=018d98581a09f1cb3581c0c28acf769c. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

It’s Your Society

Everyone has their own idea of what a perfect society would be. Maybe no more violence or having people assigned certain roles so that society could be more orderly. No matter what, we all have our own theory of what our “Utopia” would be. Some may agree, some won’t. In the article, Sexual Misery and Islam, it discusses the topic on the assaults inflicted on women of the western world. “In some places, women are veiled, stoned and killed; at a minimum, they are blamed for sowing disorder in the ideal society.” (par. 2) The article as a whole talks about the roles of women in a ‘male dominant’ environment. “Women are seen as a source of destabilization… and are respected only when defined by a property relationship” (par. 5) Now for some of you reading this, you are probably furious. However, in the world today, there are people who think that women are below men and that women should stay in their place so that society could run smoothly. The author of the article disagrees with what is going on and thinks that it’s quite absurd. I too disagree with what is occurring. I don’t live in the same society but I think that no one should be treated lower than anyone else or be tortured for going against their ‘specific’ position.* Xenophon would probably agree with what is happening in that society. Stating in Constitution of the Lacedaemomnians, “The rest of the Greeks expect their girls to imitate the sedentary life that is typical of handicraftsmen — to keep quiet and do wool-work” [1:3] and “He believed motherhood to be the most important function of freeborn woman.” [1:4]. Xenophon agrees that women have a particular role to carry out in society and that if they went against that, it would ruin how everything functions. Each of us have our own way of making our own ‘perfect’ society, some are just more different from others.

*Please DO NOT think that I think those who practice Islam are abusive and treat their women badly. This was a general statement and there are others who view women in this way.

Ivory, Team Artemis

Daoud, Kamel. “Sexual Misery and Islam.” New York Times, 14 Feb. 2016, p. 7(L). New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA443169094&it=r&asid=842f93129915495704f79f8d519d34de. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

Taking a Stance

N.F.L. quarter back Colin Kaepernick expressed his right to peaceful protest and chose to kneel during the national anthem. According to The New York Times, 2016, Juliet Macur wrote an article about the uneasiness the N.F.L. was experiencing following Kaepernick’s protest against racial inequality and police brutality in America.

Roger Goodell, a N.F.L. commissioner told the Times, ” I support our players when they want to see change in society, and we don’t live in a perfect society. On the other hand, we believe very strongly in patriotism in the N.F.L. I personally believe strongly in that.”

 

The way Macur wrote this article, she clearly has an opinion on the matter. She almost mocks the way the N.F.L. handled Kaepernick’s protest. Although Macur doesn’t put in her own opinion on an “ideal society,” what caught my eye to this article was what Roger Goodell said, “… we don’t live in a perfect society,” and he’s right. We don’t live in a “perfect society,” we have flaws and imperfections. We have societal no-no’s that ignite protests like Kaepernick’s and I believe Xenophon would agree. Our society’s not “perfect.”

What Xenophon finds perfect is the Spartan’s society. He admires the Spartan’s way of discipline and how they raise their men to be strong and well-mannered. “They pride themselves on their humility, running instead of walking to answer any call, in the belief that, if they lead, the rest will follow along the path of eager obedience.” Xenophon also notes the social aspect of Spartan life. Within the people, they uphold their standard of discipline and what they expect of a Spartan citizen. To be a Spartan is an honor because a Spartan is well mannered, strong, and would die honorably rather than die a coward. Xenophon sees this as a “perfect society” because of its self sufficiency and mannerism.

Source Citation 

Macur, Juliet. “Protest Leaves N.F.L. Necessarily Uneasy.” New York Times, 8 Sept. 2016, p. B10(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA462768533&it=r&asid=1181ff22fc4dad61ac09244a14c3160d. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

 

An Ideal Ruling (Theoretically)

In 2007, the Supreme Court split 4-4 in a decision that would have, at the time, been the first case to set a precedent for public funds being used as vouchers for students attending private schools rather than public ones. Thomas Freston, a wealthy NYC resident, has a son with special needs. He deemed the public school system’s accomodations unfit for his son and chose to send him to private school. Since he his son hadn’t originally attended a public school, Freston wasn’t entitled to government funding for his son to attend a privately run institution. The decision went back to the lower courts, which had ruled that Freston was indeed entitled to his publically funded voucher. While this solved the problem for Freston and his son, it did nothing to set a nationwide precedent regarding school vouchers. Other state governments were still unsure of their obligations to its citizens.

In the article the author argues that “in an ideal society, the decision on school choice would be made not by any of the courts but by the legislature”. While I agree that decisions like this one should made by a law passed by congress, I don’t agree with his conclusion that “any and all students who want out of a public school system they deem inadequate can take their funding with them”. Living in the same society as the author, I don’t want public money funding a students attendance at a private school. It encourages the few parents who can afford it to send their students to different institutions than those who can’t, effectively segregating schools based on income; this will also homogenize schools as poverty is strongly correlated with race in America. However, I believe Xenophon would have agreed with me on this topic. Lycurgus’ education system was in a way similar to the public school system in America: “instead of leaving each father to appoint a slave to act as tutor, gave the duty of controlling the boys to a member of the class from which the highest offices are filled, in fact to the ‘Warden’ as he is called.” Xenophon agreed with Lycurgus in most of his decisions so I think it likely that Xenophon agreed with him on this as well. As evident in Xenophon’s telling of the Lacedaemonian constitution, the father had very little say in where his child was educated and by whom he was taught. I believe Xenophon would have urged the Supreme Court to deny Freston his school voucher and abolish private schools.

 

“The Court Shirks.” New York Sun [New York, NY], 11 Oct. 2007, p. 8. New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA169718562&it=r&asid=d5ffbd2ec0970902a985c37ab9cefb4a. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

 

David, Team Saturn

Dogs, and Their Linkage to the “Ideal Society”

Quotation: “‘Very few people are meeting their exercise goals,’ he [Dr. Richard Krasuski] said. ‘In an ideal society, where people are actually listening to physician recommendations, you wouldn’t need pets to drag people outside.'”

The article, “Owning a Dog is Linked to Reduced Heart Risk,” written by Anahad O’Connor, is about how dog owners are more likely to go outside (to take their pets for walks) and are more likely to have lower stress levels and heart rates when in the presence of their canine friends. O’Connor builds his argument by referencing several doctors and their opinions on the matter. One of these doctors is Dr. Richard Krasuski.

Dr. Richard Krasuski explains that, in a perfect society, one wouldn’t need to own a dog in order to get the exercise that they need each day. From this quotation, it is clear that Krasuski believes that an ideal society is made up of people who maintain their physical health and exercise. To him, an ideal society is a healthy one more than anything else. It is also clear that Krasuski, and perhaps O’Connor as well, believe that these values are lacking in our current society – otherwise, there wouldn’t be a need for this article in the first place to inform people as to how owning a dog is linked to reduced risk of heart disease.

Considering that this article is based on a study done by Americans, on Americans, I do believe that I, an American, live in the same society as referenced by Krasuski. I also agree with his assessment. I believe that a perfect society should value physical health, and I also believe that this is not necessarily the case in the United States of America, as this country is often ridiculed for having remarkably out-of-shape citizens.

Plato likely would have agreed as well. Ancient Greek society certainly valued good health, as they consistently celebrated the ideal male form with their art and sports showcases, like the Olympic games. Furthermore, in one of Plato’s texts, he mentions, when describing an ideal city through the dialogue of Socrates, “…And so they [the citizens] will live in peace and good health, it seems, and when they die at a ripe old age, they will pass on a similar sort of life to their children.” From this quotation, it can be inferred that Plato also valued physical health and associated that with an ideal society.

Harry, Team Vesta

Citation & link:
O’Connor, Anahad. “Owning a dog is linked to reduced heart risk.” New York Times, 9     May 2013, p. A14(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA329238110&it=r&asid=cdceaa2bde2a4690bda15970c9a316ed. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.
Tags: IdealSociety, CLAS4, Plato, Xenophon

To Sit or Not To Sit…

Over the past year San Francisco’s quarterback Colin Kaepernick has sat down during the U.S.A’s national anthem and it had been a huge debate in the NFL world, on what to do to Kaepernick. He is still unsigned by any team in the NFL.  Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the anthem because he was expressing his voice that he could not support a country where it still oppresses people of color. In today’s society we still struggle with this in more parts of the country than others. The opposing side claimed that it was unpatriotic to sit and that people have died for this country so we have the right of freedom of speech. Football is a very American sport and in this article the author discusses how there is always a big ceremony for the flag and the national anthem and the support of the troops. In the article Roger Goodell, a NFL board member, weighed in his opinion,”I support our players when they want to see change in society, and we don’t live in a perfect society,” he said. ”On the other hand, we believe very strongly in patriotism in the N.F.L. I personally believe very strongly in that.”(Macur, par 7). It is clear that many of the NFL board members are torn and don’t want to say the wrong thing. The author of this article is in the middle but tends to lean in support of Kaepernick and they seem to have the same values, but like most are torn on whether they should sit or stand. I believe that we are in this society where the country is completely divided and nobody is willing to stand and change. In certain areas where the oppression is very harsh and high and some areas where it isn’t so many people probably have no experience and are not as educated. I would agree that we live in a country where oppression exists, unfortunately. In Sparta according to Xenophon there was none of this and if they were a male citizen they were to be treated equally. He says,”And therefore, just as private individuals differ from one another in virtue according as they practice or neglect it, so Sparta, as a matter of course, surpasses all other states in virtue, because she alone makes a public duty of gentlemanly conduct,” (Xenophon 10.4). So in Sparta this was not an issue like today according to Xenophon.  Emma, Team Saturn

 

Bibliography

Macur, Juliet. “Protest Leaves N.F.L. Necessarily Uneasy.” New York State Newspapers, Gale, 18 Sept. 2016

An ideal society is different for everyone because of their surroundings.

In the article “Three Young Democracy Advocates in Hong Kong Are Sentenced to Prison” there is no such thing as an ideal society with freedom. Knowing that China is a Communist country they believe that everyone is equal and no one should be higher than the other. The government believes they should be in control of everything. That is their idea of an ideal society, with everything controlled by government. Now that things are very much evolved and a spread of cultures are more rampant people are starting to stand up for what they believe in. Due to the activist standing up for more freedom they were sentenced six to eight months in prison, and to complete community service. Because such acts never happen, people requested a harder punishment for the activist for their actions. Even though three activist stood against the government and this was not the first time, the government cannot say that the society as a whole is lacking values from their ideal society. Only a few people decided to stand up against so as a whole the Chinese society have not lost any values of their ideal society.  I would not be able to live in this society because I live in a country where I have a say in what goes on around me. For example I have the right to vote, protest, bear arms, free religion, and with these freedoms I would never trade them in. That is why living in China would not be the best fit for me.

An ideal society would be different for everyone because of their cultures. Since the communist people were never exposed to freedom or having a say in government, they wouldn’t have any other idea or vision for an ideal society. The communist society is what their ideal society would be. In comparison to Xenophon, their ideal society does not include women partaking in government or having a say in anything. Their role is staying home and cleaning and cooking being behind the scenes. It is the men that have all the roles. But because that is all they were exposed to the way of their living would be their ideal society. Therefore an ideal society is limited to what you are exposed to.

 

Wong, Alan. “Three Young Democracy Advocates in Hong Kong Are Sentenced to Prison.” New York Times, 18 Aug. 2017, p. A7(L). New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu:2048/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&it=r&id=GALE%7CA500925562&asid=ee57bb4fe60242a101cca4763e94bf09. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

Soviet Russia: A False Utopia

The Soviet Union formed in 1922 after the Bolsheviks overthrew the Russian Provisional Government, which had lasted about eight months after the eradication of the Russian Empire. The Iron Curtain was placed in 1945 at the end of World War II and was lifted in 1991.  According to Gal Beckerman, author of “Hijacking Their Way Out of Tyranny”, the Iron Curtain was an attempt to disguise Russia’s “orthodox communism” as a perfect utopia and to silence the voice of its citizens.  “…[If] the Bolsheviks had built the perfect society, why would any well-adjusted citizens want to leave, let alone risk their lives to do so?”.  Beckerman writes, “Jews were understandably at the forefront of the emigration battle. Even as they were forbidden to exercise any kind of Jewish identity, they also had no option to assimilate in Soviet society… But the doors were firmly shut; those who requested permission to leave were refused and then ostracized.” Yosef Mendelevich “attracted the eyes of the world” after his failed attempt to commandeer a plain and fly it to Sweden in order to leave Russia and move to Israel. He knew of the possibility of failure but decided that even if he was caught, it would be worth it to have brought the attention of other nations onto this issue. According to Beckerman, Mendelevich’s attempt to defy his government was the beginning to the end of so many people’s suffering. Gradually, more and more Jews were allowed to leave The Soviet Union until eventually, the Iron Curtain fell apart completely. Beckerman demonstrates how Mendelevich was a hero of sorts by risking his life to free himself and many others. In Xenophon’s Constitution Of The Laecidaemonians he writes; “[At] Sparta the most important men show the utmost deference to the magistrates: they pride themselves on their humility, on running instead of walking to answer any call, in the belief that, if they lead, the rest will follow along the path of eager obedience.” (8;2). In contrast to Beckerman, the act of defying one’s government is not something Xenophon approves of. He believes that authority must be revered and honored. I think I live in the same society as the author because I share his appreciation of defying a tyrannical government in order to free its people.

Gabriella, Kaplun

Team Hestia

Beckerman, Gal. “Hijacking their way out of tyranny.” New York Times, 18 June 2010, p. A29(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA229195999&it=r&asid=e36c4d77ec527c3fa0589eefd361f674. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

go.galegroup.com.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu:2048/ps/retrieve.do?tabID=T004&resultListType=RESULT_LIST&searchResultsType=SingleTab&searchType=BasicSearchForm¤tPosition=11&docId=GALE%7CA229195999&docType=Correction+notice%2C+Editorial&sort=DA-SORT&contentSegment=&prodId=SPN.SP01&contentSet=GALE%7CA229195999&searchId=R6&userGroupName=nysl_me_brookcol&inPS=true.

Does The World Need More Leaders?

In recent years our society has developed the thought that being a leader in any way shape or form is ideal. This thought process has put a lot of pressure on young kids forcing them to seek leadership roles in school simply to have something to put on a resume for college. In “Followers Wanted” by Susan Cain, she makes it clear that she disagrees with this ideology completely and blames colleges especially for pushing this idea further. She states that “if college admissions office shows us whom and what we value, then we seem to think that the ideal society is composed of Type A’s” Type A’s being those who have taken the role of leaders. Both the author and I share similar points of view, in our society there is a constant pressure pushing you to be better then others, often forcing you to put aside your true interests or passions. The other is not only speaking of a single country but instead the world as a whole. I believe that Xenophon would not agree with the author but rather take on the opposing point of view. As he says, “the law requires all Lacedaemonians to practise gymnastics regularly throughout the campaign; and the result is that they take more pride in themselves and have a more dignified appearance than other men.” this shows his belief that one must work their hardest to become better then those around them, giving them higher status which may result in them gaining the title of leader.

Cain, Susan. Followers Needed. The New York Times, 26 Mar. 2017, go.galegroup.com/ps/retrieve.do?tabID=T004&resultListType=RESULT_LIST&searchResultsType=SingleTab&searchType=BasicSearchForm¤tPosition=1&docId=GALE%7CA487104235&docType=Article&sort=DA-SORT&contentSegment=&prodId=SPN.SP01&contentSet=GALE%7CA487104235&searchId=R2&userGroupName=nysl_ca_dmvacces&inPS=true&authCount=1&u=nysl_ca_dmvacces. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

Oliver Khoury, Team Hestia

Perfect To Who?

The ideal society differs from each individual due to personality differences. The author of this article strongly believes that a persons emotions and mood are structured by expectations. The emotion above all else in this category, is the emotion on gratitude. “Gratitude happens when some kindness exceeds expectations, when it is undeserved.” This emotion can be defined as the feeling of being overly compensated. The author uses an example of being in a high class hotel, and not the emotion at all. This was mostly due to the fact that if a person spends the cost of a high class hotel, their expectations are hisser than one of a lower class hotel. With these high expectations, anything that doesn’t seem even slightly up to par, will become upsetting and an issue. On the other hand, if a person checks into a lower class hotel, their exceptions would be extremely lower. The basic findings of a perfectly working iron may come across as the reason for feeling grateful. The feeling of over accommodation is the driving force of feeling gratitude.
The author states “If you think that human nature is good and powerful, then you go around frustrated because the perfect society has not yet been achieved. But if you go through life believing that our reason is not that great, our individual skills are not that impressive, and our goodness is severely mottled, then you’re sort of amazed life has managed to be as sweet as it is.” This quote shows the authors belief that lower expectations is the key to a better society. The author and I believe that if more people were to have this mindset moving forward in life, that our “perfect society” will be in closer reach of achievement. The quote “For he observed that at this time of life self-will makes strong root in a boy’s mind, a tendency to insolence manifests itself, and a keen appetite for pleasure in different forms takes possession of him.” shows Xenophon’s push to make the perfect society. This decision was made in response to a boy becoming a lad and basically becoming his own man, being in charge of his own actions and doing however he pleases. Because of this I believe that both Xenophon and the author of this article would of agreed with each other solely due to both their reasonings being to better the individuals of their society.

Brooks, David. “The Structure of Gratitude.” New York Times, 28 July 2015, p. A23(L). New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu:2048/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&it=r&id=GALE%7CA423329914&asid=9f8d2da4a8d3b3b05ceea871e73c0874. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

Perfect Society of Gun Laws

Gun control, has always been a topic of great discussion. Many people believe that more rules and laws, should not be put in place but enforced especially in our schools. Others disagreed and although they think school safety is important, they also believe in the central idea of freedom.

Morgan Smith, in her article ,” Lawmakers look to boost guns in school,” discusses similar opinions on gun control. In this article Texas legislators argue on to whether tougher gun laws need to be enacted to prevent further shootings or whether guns and other firearms should be made more readily available to for school teachers. She argues that teachers should be allowed to carry their weapons in the classroom, so that in emergency situations  in where, police officers may not be able to come in time, the safety of the students and teachers wouldn’t be jeopardized.

According to the article, Ms. Riddle ( a representative in Texas), states , ”’Are we going to be able to screen and determine everyone who is going to be a threat? Of course not,” she said. ”We are not a perfect society, and there is no way we can create perfect laws.”’

This statement was used to solidify her point that teachers need to be able to protect themselves in school. She believes that a perfect society would be able to construct laws that would ensure the safety of not only students and teachers. Based the statements  she made, I believe also that  a certain aspect of safety found in an ” ideal society” is needed in their community.  I think the societies that we both live in are quite similar being that we both value safety especially in the schools of our community, however I don’t agree on the approach she thinks should be taken. Allowing teachers to have guns in the classroom, would only add to the issues we already have in our schools. We should leave the guns in the hands of the security officers.

In   the Spartan Constitution, Xenophon  discusses the Constitution of the Lacedaemomnians. He favors the way in which they are ruled and the laws they are ruled by. In [2.10] of the Spartan Constuition he writes ,”In order that the boys might never lack a ruler even when the Warden was away, he [Lycurgus] gave authority to any citizen who chanced to be present to require them to do anything that he thought right, and to punish them for any misconduct. “

This quote shows, that he was willing to give almost anything to have perfection in society. I believe that he would agree that guns should be given to teachers, to achieve the modern “ideal society”.

Smith, Morgan. “Lawmakers look to boost guns in school.” New York Times, 28 Dec. 2012, p. A19A(L). New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu:2048/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&it=r&id=GALE%7CA313191533&asid=4963e9e803df3db2b6cdeed9c11336b1. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

http://www.nytimes.com.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu:2048/

Sharifa, Team Hestia

 

What is an Ideal Society?

In the article, “Utopia, and the rest of all Possible Worlds” the author Michael Kimmelman, seems to believe that an ideal society does not exist, and that every world has it’s flaws. Therefore, according to the author, there are no values lacking in the present society. He also thinks that most people dream about a utopia, when they have lost faith, yet everyone’s perception of a utopia is vastly different. Unfortunately. Even with the creation of the internet, views of an ideal society still remains intact, yet people have become more “cynical”, as time went on. The unrealistic perception of a perfect society, or utopia, has caused many to constantly crave for more, and never be satisfied with the way things are in life. However, Kimmelman believes that an ideal society does not exist, and neither does it need too.“Or maybe we keep dreaming up impossible schemes of perfection to remind ourselves that the real world, in it’s messiest is the best thing after all.” In other words, the flaws of a society, makes it different or stand out, and in reality nothing is indeed perfect. I also agree with the author’s statement, because nothing is perfect, and it is impossible for an ideal society to exist, as events in society will never go smoothly, and people make mistakes. Plato would also agree with Kimmelman, “Nontheless, everyone in this ideal system is enabled to travel as far toward the sun (The good) as education can take him, given the innate of his desires. Thus everyone comes as close to being fully virtuous, and so to pursuing and achieving genuine hapiness, as he can.. It is this that makes Plato’s city both an ethical, and a prudential idea.”


Source Citation   (MLA 8th Edition)

Kimmelman, Michael. “Ah, utopia, and the rest of all possible worlds.” New York Times, 19 Oct. 2000, p. E1. New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA66209837&it=r&asid=15928ec956c8ca3c513f69573ab27589. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.


Canada’s Racist Founding Father

When you think of Canada, one has the perception that they are the nicest people one could ever meet. Taking a look back into their history, the “ideal society” that we presume them to be isn’t what meets the eye. In the New York Times article, “In Canada, a Reckoning Over a Racist Founding Father,” by Ian Austen, Sir John A. Macdonald of Kingston, Ontario was the first prime minister of Canada.Even though his followers acknowledged his racism towards the native population, they turned a blind eye to his inhumane policies of “cultural genocide”. Arthur Milnes, a local author and self-described “public historian,” states, “Sometimes we like to hold ourselves up as this perfect, inclusive, nonracist society, but we’re not.” Very much like American history, where natives were sent to reserves, Macdonald made a policy where natives had forced schooling separate from the rest of the population.  “Macdonald said that an indigenous child educated where he or she lives ”is simply a savage who can read and write,” whereas children sent to boarding schools ”will acquire the habits and modes of thought of white men.” To assimilate students, the schools banned indigenous languages and prohibited, sometimes forcefully, indigenous cultural practices. ” Stripping one of their cultural background in order to conform to the white man’s standards of “civil” life is not unseen. There are many examples of this type of prejudice behavior scene throughout history.
The author, Ian Austen, stresses the importance of recognizing immoral actions upon another race. Austen believes that there is a lack of action to compensate for the wrongs Macdonald inflicted upon the indigenous population in Canada. In today’s society, racism will always be a conflicting topic familiar to everyone. It happens all throughout the seven continents, yet there is no solution for it. I don’t live in an ideal society because everyone has their own opinion which brings upon controversy to society. If one cannot change their mindset of “superiority”, racism will always divide the “ideal society”. Plato would have disagreed with this sort of treatment to different races. In the Reeve Plato Extracts it states that, “The goal of the elenchus is not to reach adequate definitions of the virtues or seemingly paradoxical doctrines about weakness of will and virtue, however. Its primary aim is moral reform.” With that said, Plato wanted individuals to think for themselves what is morally right or wrong. Given the knowledge they already possess, they should act upon it, but the fear of standing up for what one believes is unethical is a major weakness everyone shares. Everyone has different beliefs about virtues, but everyone knows the difference between ethical and unethical, right from wrong and so on. An ideal society could never exist because of a clash of opinions and a lack of justice.


Source Citation:
Austen, Ian. “In Canada, a Reckoning Over a Racist Founding Father.” New York Times, 29 Aug. 2017, p. A4(L). New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA502097971&it=r&asid=d310a979f3b97a9fda47150e2d830860. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

Utopia

Nabeel Rajab, author of the article “Don’t profit from abuses by Bahrain”, states that in order for humans to live in an “ideal world”, we must all “..[respect] human rights and fundamental freedoms..[as a] way to attain peace, stability and prosperity in any nation; I have devoted my life to that ideal. ” The background for this statement lies in the issue between activists in Bahrain who are being persecuted for outwardly disagreeing with their government (who is also allied with the U.S.) bombing Yemen. He says, “Bahrain is also trying to crush civil society back home. This other, domestic campaign is aimed at people who, like me, cannot abide injustice and are willing to speak out…..We know we risk much in calling for this. Some of my fellow activists have been tortured, sentenced to life imprisonment, even killed.” This illustrates how extensive this issue is for Bahraini activists. The author believes that in order for humans to attain an ideal world, we all must respect “human rights and fundamental freedoms”. Only then will we be able to live in a peaceful world. I believe I don’t live in such a society. Even though a lot of people assume that America is the land of freedom, in reality, much of our opinions and ideals are censored by our government. We are controlled through mass media. Although the U.S. government doesn’t go to drastic measures such as killing activists like Bahrain, in a way, our governments are a little similar.

Xenophon believed that if everyone had the same ideals and beliefs, society would be perfect. It would be a utopia. But of course, this isn’t guaranteed. You will always have a group of people who disagree with you no matter what ideology you are preaching. There is no belief that everyone agrees on. Even with murder, although the majority disagree with murder, there are still people who are for killing others. You just can’t simply make everyone have the same opinion as you.

Aisha, Team Ares


Source Citation   (MLA 8th Edition)

Rajab, Nabeel. “Don’t profit from abuses by Bahrain.” New York Times, 18 May 2017, p. NA(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA491896040&it=r&asid=f247fbea19708d37c0587725ae76d269. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.

Opinions, Opinions, and Onions (Cameron Cannon)

My morals are justified! Not yours!

Morals are different from one person to the next. It’s like saying someone is African-American and failing to forget how mixed their bloodline is or how huge of a continent Africa is; we are not the same. Each person has a different belief, value, family traditions and each of these factors contribute to what our morals are going to be. Marrying young is what many women in some places dream of meanwhile the average American woman would like to wait, get a career, maybe date to see who’s the best bachelor. Therefore the perfect, “ideal society” cannot exist when there are so many views on what one person should be versus what they are happy and accept into their “circle”.

It cannot be better said by other than David Brooks, author of  “This American Land”. He explains the barriers to attain such equal, perfect and accepting world.  In fact, his introduction is the most important part of understanding why any ideal society is always going to be a dream. “We’re living in the middle of a national crisis of solidarity — rising racial bitterness, pervasive distrust, political dysfunction. So what are the resources we can use to pull ourselves together? What can we draw upon to tell a better American story than the one Donald Trump tells, one that will unite us instead of dividing us, and yield hopeful answers instead of selfish ones?

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Utopia Throughout Time

The majority’s conditions of a Utopia seems to change with every generation. We may even find human interference with history just so we can sate our desires in the belief that a Utopia is possible.  For example there was this big idea spread throughout postwar that the Mayans were more peaceful and seemed to live in a “perfect society”, one that wasn’t run by “messy human emotion”. This was explained by Michiko Kakutani in New York Times’ Book of the Times when they wrote “No doubt that earlier view of the Mayas – articulated by such scholars as Sylvanus G. Morley and Eric S. Thompson more than three decades ago – gained currency because it appealed to the modern, postwar desire to believe in a perfect society of people untainted by messy human emotions, and it remained cemented in place by researchers’ simple inability to decipher the Mayan hieroglyphics.” As the author stated, this idea came from a pair of scholars who did not have the translations of the hieroglyphics as we did not have the ability to decipher them at the time, and many seemed to accept this study with ease. The study of the Mayans was thought to be accepted because of the desire for a possible Utopia. To cut it short, we cut the bad part of the Mayan world because we wanted our ideals to be real, that the perfect society was possible.

Doesn’t the idea seem almost silly? I mean it isn’t possible to make everyone in the world happy, so for a Utopia to be possible everyone would have to be one in the same and I think more people are understanding that now in modern society. If you ask ten people what their Utopia is, each answer will be different one way or another. Especially with the shift in times, what was seen as a perfect world back then would definitely not be a perfect world today. Even then, the bad would be pushed aside and the good would be brought out because of that desire for perfection. Back around Xenophon’s time people would quite literally breed for the sake of a stronger offspring, not out of love. A man who hadn’t felt his wife was strong enough to bear his child could impregnate a woman he saw as greater if he were given the consent to. “[8] On the other hand, in case a man did not want to cohabit with his wife and nevertheless desired children of whom he could be proud, he made it lawful for him to choose a woman who was the mother of a fine family and of high birth, and if he obtained her husband’s consent, to make her the mother of his children.” Xenophon saw this as one of the reasons the Spartans were raising closer to being a greater society, when in today’s world it is anything but that.

Kakutani, Michiko. “BOOKS OF THE TIMES.” New York Times, 6 Aug. 1986. New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA176336830&it=r&asid=adb2cf73250359d27f7f43ffe929539a. Accessed 16 Sept. 2017.

-Yekaterina Ignatyeva

Do you believe in a Utopian Society?

A Utopian society is the the imagination of a perfect and idealized world. In the article Utopia, and the Rest of All Possible Worlds. The author believes that the idea of a utopia society came after the world was left with war and chaos, wanting to have a longing for Utopian society. For example, it states, “ change the physical conditions of an imperfect thing, a city, and you will make it better.” This driven power of possibilities revolutionized many story books with wanting their own Utopian society. The author believes that thinking about a perfect place is after all a better way of living. There is this quote that caught my attention and it states, “There’s an answer. Or maybe we keep dreaming up impossible schemes of perfection to remind ourselves that the real world, in its messiness, is the best thing after all.” He does not seem to believe those values are lacking in the present tense because til this day, we still believe in such society at a certain point. No I don’t believe with the author, because if a perfect world is in fact perfect, I would make it such that nothing can go against it. The imagination of such dedicate world should live on. However, there will be lack of character in society, but I would like to see how long it would take until its rule breaks down. Plato would not agree in such a perfect world but rather fix it to become a better society. As stated, “ Plato brought to philosophy, the methods he invented to solve them, and the solutions he suggested and explored.” In this quote Plato seems to show his investment in making and producing answers for a better society but not a perfect society. One interesting fact that caught my eye was that in this article, there has been several calling from Sparta and Plato itself. Such as, “His colorful legacy is to the vast history of Utopian literature roughly what Plato’s Retreat is to the history of social custom in New York” and “some historians view Sparta as utopia’s fountainhead.” Not much was given, but the idea behind a driven force for a Utopian society did emerge.

To leave you off, here is a quote : “But we still keep dreaming, not necessarily because we believe in the idea of a secular utopia’s possible fulfillment but because, well, we seem to need to.”

Kimmelman, M. Utopia, and the Rest of All possible Worlds.” New York Times” [ New York] 19 October N: pE1

Hispanic American Society

In this article, Mark says “We are far from a perfect society, but each day millions of everyday Americans strive to make our country better through diversity and inclusion”. This article talks about how the Hispanic society in America is good for them. They explained the opportunities they got in America that they wouldn’t be able to get anywhere else. These opportunities include getting an education, careers, rights, etc. Mark believes that these values in today’s society is lacking, because society in America think that people from other countries are just going to do bad things in America and Mark is trying to prove that Hispanic people are good, which they are. I do and do not think that I live in the same society as the Hispanic society that are in America, because everyone else here also has the same opportunities as them and I don’t think so because some people tend to proceed that Hispanic people don’t deserve these opportunities. I do agree with the author of this article, because we are far from a perfect society and some people don’t realize that America gives opportunities that other countries don’t give. In Xenophon, it says “In order that the boys might never lack a ruler even when the Warden was away, he gave authority to any citizen who chanced to be present to require them to do anything that he thought right, and to punish them for any misconduct.” In this quote, it explains that they agree with the article and that the police in America also punish those who disobey the law. For example, people get arrested for doing racist things like writing racist slurs on the walls or punching/killing someone that is from another country.

 

Vargas, Mark. “This month, celebrate all the ways Hispanic Americans boost our country.” Washington Examiner 15 Sept 2017: 1 page. Opinion Contributors. http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/this-month-celebrate-all-the-ways-hispanic-americans-boost-our-country/article/2634467. Accessed 16 Sept 2017.

Indivisible, with liberty and justice not for all

In The New York Times article, “Joe Biden: Reclaiming America’s Values,” Joe Biden discusses the necessary improvements that society should make in order to unite USA. Biden begins the article with, “while the United States is far from perfect, we have never given up the struggle to grow closer to the ideals in our founding documents.” This statement acknowledges the United States’s flaws in society, yet, the country continues to reach it’s original aspirations of equal freedom. Throughout the article, Biden elaborates on his perspective of the recent politics that had shaken Americans in the past week. In a time period where stereotypes, assumptions, and racism take hold of mindsets, Biden attempts to push away the preconceived thoughts that has been reinforced by Trump’s language. Unlike the President, Biden delinates the importance of being a country that strives to reach aspirations as well as others. The ideal society would defend the principles of a democratic country — diversity, tolerance, and inclusivity. The former Vice President points out Trump’s negative language, in which does not represent the values of the whole country. Trump’s stance on DACA, neo-Nazis, and illiberalism was implied to have pushed the United States further from future progression. The recent growth of tension, hate, and violence, such as the events in Charlottesville, Va., portrays the lack of values in present society.

 

To fight against the lash of hate, Biden states that “you cannot define Americans by what they look like, where they come from, whom they love or how they worship.” This conclusion of the article summarizes Joe Biden’s beliefs in which the country is not a certain skin color, culture, and language. Instead, it is the combination of a multitude of people. It’s diversity in beliefs and values is what defines the United States. I agree with Biden, and believe that I live in the same society. There is a wide variety of qualities that make up American culture. History has shown the influences of events and trends that has shaped the society we live in today. There is no single explanation that answers the question of, “what is American society?” because the only constant is change. This is also similar to Plato’s, Republic, in which Socrates compares an individual to it’s society. “Socrates: …let’s first find out what sort of thing justice is in cities, and afterward look for it in the individual, to see if the larger entity is similar in form to the smaller one,” agrees that a single person does not mirror the whole of it’s population (Plato. 2.369a). By looking at a wide range of experiences, philosophies, and values, it gives a wider representation of everyone.

 

Vicky Lee, Team Hermes

Biden, Joe. “Joe Biden: Reclaiming America’s Values.” The New York Times, 14 Sept. 2017. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/14/opinion/joe-biden-more-perfect-union.html. Accessed 16 Sept. 2017.

Sweden’s downfall

The author of this article believes that Sweden has lost the ideal society on the way because of the tensions in the land. For example, Anna Lindh, Sweden’s Foreign Minister died of a stab wound and a 5 year old child was abducted and stabbed to death by a inmate. The two death brought sorrow into this land and people started started to lost hope that Sweden will ever become great. It even says that the lost of the Foreign Minister, they lost part of the future. In this article, it tells us that the history of the land played a big role in shaping this society. It’s rural land and harsh weather was a long confrontation that many people living in Sweden had to combat. Also in the rural area, there is lakes and dark forest that could be an effect to their society. An ideal society in Sweden where a land so inflicted of pain and so lost of hope when their Swedish foreign minister died can probably never forge a road to a perfect society. In the recent occurrence, the mentally unstable have been attacking people. So if they get rid of these people then they would feel more secure and safe in this land. I agree that getting rid of the mentally unstable is a good idea because if combining normal people with the mentally unstable, then the violence will escalate and therefore it will cause more harm to the society.

“He believed that if this habit were cultivated it would enable them to climb hills more easily and descend steep inclines with less danger, and that a youth who had accustomed himself to go barefoot would leap and jump and run more nimbly than a boy in sandals.” This quote is from the Xenophon explaining that training people in their young age could be a great effect to Society. To support my case if they get rid of the mental people now, no more younger people would need to be affected by the massacre inflicted onto the nation. Mental people that cannot control their violent side should be the first to be locked up somewhere far away from normal society. In order to not bring harm to the nation, the nation should develop a law that locks up the mental unstable, so they have no chance to ever bring harm to innocent people. In a different area the mentally unstable could learn and be teach the proper way of society before ever going back to society. This is what I believe because the mentally unstable is too unstable shown in the article that they killed and abducted a child no less than 5 years of age. Plato would probably agree that the mentally unstable should live differently. In their own way of justice they would ignore the consequences of their action but this is how to bring justice to criminals. Also the practice of justice isn’t for a good reason, it is a necessity. Therefore that if criminals are locked up and sent away, then this justice is a necessity because the criminal will bring harm to the people if he stays.  

Cowell, Alan. “Sweden’s Brooding Dramas, and Deadly Puzzles.” New York Times, 17 Sept. 2003, p. A4. New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA107816680&it=r&asid=32d3d361ae16bf7e26ed60f33b306ce8. Accessed 16 Sept. 2017.

So…College is for Spartans?

 

sparta school

“ … we seem to think that the ideal society is composed of Type A’s.” The Leaders, the alphas, the strongest and the most powerful- a bit like the Spartans if you think about it. In The New York Times article the author discusses the common trend of prioritizing “leadership skills” for university admissions.  Elite institutions such as Harvard, Princeton and, Yale evaluate applications based off of leadership potential. Although these institutions want leaders to create a better future; the message is not interpreted by students that way. The author says that students see  “leadership skills” and think power and dominance rather than having genuine interest in society. I think this is true in today’s society. Students seem to have that Spartan ideology that correlates power and dominance to success. I often saw students run for club president for the sole purpose of putting it on their transcript, not because they had an actual interest in the club. This reminded me of how Xenophon would disagree with the author and agree with the admissions process. It was insisted that “…physical training for the female no less than for the male sex: moreover, he instituted races and trials of strength for women competitors as for men, believing that if both parents are strong they produce more vigorous offspring”. Here we see the emphasis put on strength to create a strong successful society. The Spartans were extremely tough and only wanted the strongest children. Similarly, regardless of the school’s intentions, the students who exhibited qualities of a leader were the ones getting accepted over the creative and the intellectuals, it’s not  really a surprise; there is no place for the weak in Sparta after all.

-Suman Afzal, Hephaestus

 

MLA Citation:

Susan Cain. Followers Wanted. The New York Times26, 26 Mar. 2017, go.galegroup.com.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu:2048/ps/retrieve.do?tabID.                      Accessed 15 Sept. 2017

Three Stooges Who?

“Here’s to Tiny Brauer, a dependable gangster, and Bud Jamison, a reliable detective, and Symona Boniface, a perfect society matron, and Connie Cezan, a go-to gold digger with silver-dollar eyes.”

The author believes an ideal society is promoted in the media often, but the public is never exposed to the reality of things, such as the comedy show featuring the Three Stooges. Their show showcased their dangerous actions with no consequences. For example, in the world of the Three Stooges, if one of the Three Stooges were hit on the head with a hammer, they would not bleed from the injury. However, other supporting characters are always impacted by the injuries, showing the audience the Three Stooges’ invincibility in a sense. Despite the comedic effect of the show, the author believes that a false sense of a perfect society is promoted because of the invincibility, but in reality, no one is invincible, not even the Three Stooges. The author’s idea of an ideal society is having supporting characters be as important as the main cast because he does not like how they fade. Even though without the supporting characters, the show would not be able to go on. The author believes the supporting characters play just an important role in the show as the main characters, such as the Three Stooges. I think I live in the same society as this person because that is the true nature of movies and films. Most of the attention is usually given to the main characters since they are in the center. People can’t help, but focus on them. I agree with the author because it would be more difficult for the main characters to act their story out if there were no supporting characters. Even though their roles may not be significant to the plot, I believe that their roles are crucial for the survival of the show. “…and I fell to wondering how this could have happened. But when I considered the institutions of the Spartans, I wondered no longer.” Xenophon would have agreed in the sense that it is difficult to shine when you are being overshadowed by a greater being. People tend to overlook the ones that are in the limelight, and focus mainly on the spotlight, which is something the author strongly emphasizes in the article. In other words, a perfect society is ideal, but unrealistic because of the way things have set in media.

Barry, Dan. “Even the Three Stooges needed second fiddles.” New York Times, 14 Apr. 2012, p. C1(L). New York State Newspapers, login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA286305637&it=r&asid=77e09f0c690b2e7e7add46fde7acc86f. Accessed 15 Sept. 2017

– Rebecca, Team Jupiter

Can dogs help lazy people?

The article, “Owning a dog is linked to reduced heart risk” by Anahad O’Connor shows how dogs can help with forming an ideal society. Anahad O’Connor quoted “In an ideal society, where people are actually listening to physician recommendations, you wouldn’t need pets to drag people outside.” The main point of this article was to show that most people who own pets especially dogs, are usually healthier and more active. Anahad O’Connor points out that people who would have pets are more likely to be more healthy compared to those who do not have pets and studies have proven this. The author believes an ideal society would be when people start to listen to professional advice on how to get healthy. It seems as though that the author believes that an ideal society would not need pets to make people leave their house. He does seem to believe that those values are lacking in the present society because people are still being lazy and not caring about their own well-being. I think I live in the same society as this person because people have never really liked listening to professionals and this all just goes back to people being lazy. I agree that dogs can help people who have problems with being active since dogs need to be walked; this will push people to get up and go out of their house to walk their dog. I feel like it is true that a society can just do what they had to to stay healthy but that is why it is said as an “ideal society” and not what is actually happening. Xenophon would have agreed since he quoted “The rest of the Greeks expect their girls to imitate the sedentary life that is typical of handicraftsmen — to keep quiet and do wool-work.” Xenophon would have agreed because the quote by is saying that a not so active life is the way to girl especially for women where they should just stay at home. This relates back to the article where the “ideal society ” is to become more active but in actual society, not everyone is motivated to do things.

-Raine, Team Jupiter

MLA Citation:

O’Connor, Anahad. “Owning a dog is linked to reduced heart risk.” The New York Times 9 May 2013. go.galegroup Web. 15 Sept. 2017. <

 

Imperfect Society

“’ Every society has to deal with demons, he said.’ Our society is not perfect. None is. These demons are named xenophobia, racism, and exclusion” is a quote from the article Canada’s Response to Hate: More Tolerance by The New York Times. This article is addressing the terrorist attack in Quebec City and how no society is free of terrorist acts. The author believes that a perfect society is a society free of its demons, meaning free from racism, exclusion and the fear of being harmed by people other countries. The author believes that there isn’t a society that is perfect no matter how hard we try, but the author believes that the way a country reacts to an event like the terrorist attack could make a difference. I also believe that we live in the same society as the one the author has stated because no matter how protected a country may be, destruction always finds its way in. That’s why many people are so paranoid about each other, thinking whether or not the other person is safe. Also because of stereotypes racism will exist no matter how hard you try to combat it. I believe Plato would have agreed because he wanted a perfect society where children wouldn’t have to be educated in a place where they had to fear death. “Shouldn’t they be told stories that will make them least likely to fear death?” (Plato, Republic, 3. 386a). This quote shows that Plato believes that a perfect society is one where people shouldn’t have to grow up fearing death and others harming them.

“Canada’s Response to Hate: More Tolerance.” New York Times, 2 Feb. 2017, p. A26(L). New York State Newspaperslogin.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?p=SPN.SP01&sw=w&u=nysl_me_brookcol&v=2.1&id=GALE%7CA479689770&it=r&asid=773dc85be2b5a511b9486a5842c07339. Accessed 15 Sept. 2017.

What’s your ideal society?

Everyone has their own opinion of how their “ideal” or “perfect” society should be. In 1986, an article was published called “Parents for drug free youth”. Ann and John Murphy received questions and responded through their newspaper article. This specific article spoke about the use of alcohol by young teens in celebration of their graduation. This is still an issue in our society today. This particular parent was worried about their children not being under parental supervision at these graduation parties and being under the influence of alcohol. Ann and John responded to this by discussing an “ideal society”. “We would like to begin by stating our dream of an ideal society. It would be one in which mothers, fathers and children derive so much fulfillment from their faith, jobs relationships and recreations that they wouldn’t need to intoxicate themselves… In this type of family, the parents teach and practice, their religious beliefs, maintain a happy, loving marriage, openly show affection to their sons and daughters and facilitate their friendships and hobbies.”
The authors of this article clearly believe that in their ideal society, faith and the involvement of parents in their children’s life is very important. Faith is Ann and John’s main topic. They believe that faith at home is a big part of life. Beside the article, a prayer is placed for the readers to recite. The authors also believe that these values are lacking in society because children are drinking alcohol at younger ages every year. I do believe that Plato would have agreed with this society. Plato was influential on Christianity, which was considered a superiority.

Brittany, Team Hephaestus

“North Country Catholic. (Ogdensburg, N.Y.) 1946-Current, April 16, 1986, Page 11, Image 11.” North Country Catholic. (Ogdensburg, N.Y.) 1946-Current, April 16, 1986, Page 11, Image 11 – NYS Historic Newspapers, Diocese of Ogdensburg, nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/np00010004/1986-04-16/ed-1/seq-11/#date1=01%2F01%2F1725&sort=relevance&date2=12%2F31%2F2016&searchType=advanced&SearchType=prox5&sequence=0&index=0&words=ideal+society&proxdistance=5&to_year=2016&rows=20&ortext=&from_year=1725&proxtext=ideal+society&phrasetext=&andtext=&dateFilterType=range&page=3.

IdealSociety, CLAS4, Plato, Xenophon