Personal Freedom


 Personal Freedom


“Personal Freedom” is a term oftentimes misused and misunderstood, hence over or underestimated, depending on the circumstances. It is the fundamental human right to think, speak and act “freely”. But what does “freely” even mean? Is it “free of responsibilities”, does it represent mental or financial flexibility, perhaps doing whatever comes to mind? I believe it’s something simpler, yet far more substantial.

When you get to choose a lifestyle, you ought to compromise with all the pros and cons that come along. You wish to live in a big city? You gain access to all available services, provided you somehow contribute to society’s economic life and meet your ends. You want to join the criminal underworld?  Then it’s the balance of high risk, high pay you’re agreeing to. How about living alone in the wild? No taxes, no car horns, no annoying old ladies in the supermarket queue, you are, nonetheless, on your own, cut out from modern society, its structure and its achievements. No matter what the final choice is, no matter the terms of the contract you bind yourself to, the most important aspect in this process is the fact that YOU get to choose, not a ruthless ruler, not a religious leader: you. Now, that is the point of personal freedom.

And it really is the key able to take any shape its owner wants it to, in order to unlock all doors one considers that’ll make them a better person. Carving a career in politics? Volunteering for an environmental project? Finishing a law, art, med, math school? Learning to saw? Going out with friends? Getting married? Reading the entire Harry Potter book collection? Starting a war with half of Europe? Ending your own life? (ok, maybe the last two were a bit extreme, but frankly neither Adolf nor Vincent lacked personal freedom). The list is endless, as are the dreams and ambitions that every person ever had and were brought to existence, whether they were simply conceived or actually materialized. All that thanks to personal freedom.

Antonis Skias, B4

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