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In America today, we have more freedom than almost any other time in history, even though these were reduced tremendously after 9/11. Today, there seems to be two groups in society: one that wants to not follow any rules and the other one which does not want freedom for any of us. The source of the problem is that we have the freedom to choose our religion, but most people use this freedom to avoid religious based morality, we have freedom of speech but most people use that to say mean things to others or spread rumors that aren't true, and we have freedom from assuming we our guilty before that is proved in a court of law, but many use this to get away with crimes.

The problem is not that we have too much freedom, but that we make bad choices in the ways we use that freedom. We should use our freedom of religion to make us better people, our freedom of speech to encourage others and speak out for what is wrong, and our legal protections to keep the government from becoming too powerful and corrupt.

The ways in which people use their freedom suggest that most people don't really want it. Many people try to be different in order to fit in. Many are so lonely that they will compromise anything to be accepted. Many will do immoral things to get negative attention. Others will get discouraged, do nothing, and give up on making society better. And then there are those that use their freedom maliciously like scammers, bullies, and stalkers.

Many people have developed addictions to their bad behavior, because we have too much power, with the Internet. Almost everything we do online is highly addictive. Not just the usual porn, games, gambling, chatting, stealing songs and videos, and social networking. Some people are even addicted to taking pictures of themselves or their food or even just getting information or looking for funny things. There is nothing wrong with having free time and doing things fun and relaxing, just as long is that is not all you do or gets to the point where it interferes with your life and others around you.

Instead of arguing about how much freedom we should have, maybe we should focus on what we do with that freedom. Many people think that limiting our freedoms is the answer, but a more powerful business or government is not a good idea. Instead, we must find a way to encourage better behavior. There are two ways to effectively change someone's mind: through repetition and through major life changes and experiences.

Instead of giving tax breaks based on how much we give to others, why not give tax breaks based on community service and attitude. Instead of electing someone based on what they know, maybe we should focus instead on who they are. Instead of Hollywood encouraging people to live dangerously or give up on life to inspire people to do what they can to better themselves. Instead of raising money for a charity, why don't people pledge to change something in their life. Instead of imprisoning people for committing crimes, why don't we make them do penance or service, to prove they have changed.

Instead of us just reacting, in an extreme way, in response to a perceived threat, lets instead form a public forum of intellectuals and teachers to do proactive research, to solve problems, before they become crisis. Instead of spending huge amounts of money on the military or even healthcare, we should prioritize spending based on how far our money will go, depending on what areas of the government we invest it in. Instead of changing the entire direction of our country every 8 years, maybe we should not try to put in laws and policies that will just be removed, when the other political party is elected, especially with foreign policy.

Our country needs to pick a direction and stick with it over time, and look longer term in the future to set priorities. This is exasperated by our outsourcing government to big business. The government is criticized for being bureaucratic and wasteful, but many business leaders destroy their companies when they become corporations or only succeed by dumb luck.

And why is it that when people hear about fraud in the government, they seem to think their are huge percentages of our budget being wasted and their response is to cut out the entire social service to fix it. If they are looking to find a part of the government that is very wasteful and corrupt, that number one agency is the military. But we never cut the military, because people seem to think the military ceases to exist or be useful, if it is not fighting wars constantly. Maybe if those who vote for wars are required to serve in the military in that war, we will have fewer wars.

We need to see ourselves as not just ourselves but ourselves bound to a society as part of our basic personal psychology, so instead of being selfish, we realize that what we do affects other people around us and the other way around too. We cannot separate our existence from those who live beside us. This is a fundamental shift in thinking we need to adopt, to solve many of our worst problems. We are in it together for the long haul, whether we like it or not.

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