The Rights Of Man By Thomas Paine Analysis

Decent Essays

“One nation under God, indivisible” – ironic, considering America’s fractured populace. In his book Rights of Man (1791), pamphleteer Thomas Paine presents his interpretation of America’s future. To Paine, basing America’s government on man’s rights creates a perfect society. While modern America is still diverse, his utopian predication no longer applies. Specifically, violent racial demonstrations and wealth inequalities prompt civilian and government action for solutions. Despite Paine’s hopes, reality is quite different: racial conflicts often erupt into violence. As Jefferson laid out in the Declaration of Independence, when authorities abuse groups’ rights, the people must rebel. This line of reasoning applies to modern events. For …show more content…

While some congressmen have motioned to reduce the wealthy’s influence, such efforts often fail because politicians themselves wish to protect their bank account. When the government is out of touch with average citizens, the principles of society crumble. On a personal level, society needs a shift in its approach to race. Instead of creating divisions, Americans should try to understand their biases. Recently, initiatives with this goal have sprung up in universities. Soon after the Civil Rights Act, many universities in America implemented affirmative action initiatives, which sought to level the playing field between white and minority applicants, the latter traditionally having a disproportionately low acceptance rate. Doing so increased the minority population on campuses and brought the issue of discrimination to the forefront of national attention. By acknowledging historical patterns of discrimination and taking explicit action to reverse that trend, a peaceful method to decrease racial inequality emerged. However, white applicants have protested affirmative action, labeling it “reverse discrimination.” Yet this only emphasizes the faults in racial understanding – members of traditionally privileged groups recoil at the notion of elevating minorities, not realizing that their lower starting place necessitates a boost later. For unity, both groups must reach a mutual understanding about race’s role in modern society.

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