This is a reprint of a post I wrote for my blog Oklahoma Lefty back in 2010.
I Want the Utopia Too
One of the criticisms put on liberals is their desire for a utopian society. I have to admit that I want us to live in that utopian society. I mean who wouldn’t? A society without greed, corruption, pollution, hatred, and bigotry is something that we should all desire and strive for, but to some the idea is a joke and to others it is a threat.
The problem often comes from how to attain utopia. Some believe that the government is the best way to bring about this peaceful and wonderful society and that is what many see as a threat. Admittedly I don’t think that the government should or could bring about a utopian society. The government should provide for equality of opportunity, equality under the law for all citizens, security, and a safety net to make sure that the common people are not overrun by those in power. Now in order for that last one to work, the populace needs to be engaged and educated and sadly that’s not what we have at the moment. The things that we should be working towards are ensuring that everyone has the same opportunities through the best education possible and ensuring that everyone is treated equally under the law. I think that those two can help bring about and ensure that the safety net works, works well, and provides a hand up and not a hand out. Some will say that the idea of a safety net goes against that of liberty. I couldn’t disagree more. There is nothing that is anti-liberty about having provisions and systems set in place to help those in need.
While government can ensure that people have the same opportunities and will all be treated equitably under the law, it cannot ensure results. That is the responsibility of the individual.
So how does one then bring about the utopia if not by government mandate? I believe that it is to be done through education and good parenting. We much teach our kids that things like greed and corruption are wrong. We must show our children that love is stronger than violence and that doing the right thing actually matters. We must impart on our children the love of learning for the sake of learning and not just to get the highest paying job. We must convey to our kids the ideals of liberty, freedom, equality, fairness, and hard work. We must also communicate the importance of the individual along with the importance of taking care of and living in service to our fellow man and society.
Despite all the cards stacked against a potential utopia, I still believe that it is possible, just not in my lifetime. Someday humanity will grow and evolve out of the childish adolescence that we now find ourselves in and when we do, maturity will prevail and utopia will happen through natural succession and not by the barrel of a gun.