Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Are All Cultures Equal?

Are all cultures equal is a question that faces us in the post-modern West. It is the basis of understanding "life" and liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And since Americans believe that all men are created equal, as far as their innate similarities. There are also differences that are formed by the cultures that men inhabit. These are not ultimately equal in my opinion.

Our country believes that humans have an "inalienable right" to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. This is a civil right that is determined by the individual, himself.

As our culture allows for divers viewpoints, we affirm the individual's right to own his own life, be responsible toward himself and our society. The responsibilities that our citizens must maintain are those that form our laws. We are equal under law, so we do not believe that anyone is "above the law", or should "subvert the law". We should be law abiding citizens.

But, today, there are those that believe that citizens should be mandated by the government to be their brother's keeper. This is what our liberal policies create and further; irresponsibility of individual citizens. Taxes go to "help" those so unfortunate.

The problem with viewing another as "unfortunate" is that this becomes his own self-perception. And that hinders his desire to become responsible. It "feeds" an unhealthy behavior through giving an unhealthy message.

Although domestic policy has been "damaged" by furthering the "welfare STATE", it is no less so with foreign policy.

Globalism tends to be formulated around multiculturalism. Although multiculturalism should be affirmed as a part of individual identity, it should no be condoned when it comes to universal standards. Why?

Universalizing what is particular deminishes the "ideals' needed to form unity or universal goals. Universal goals should be about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And these goals should be informed by individual differences, gifts and interests, not by some "cultural form" that inhibits individual growth, or ego development.

Are all cultures equal? Yes and No. Yes, as far as a culture is internalized, but not all are healthy environments for developing individuality. So, No, as far as the universal ideals of individual liberty that upholds responsible and self-governing "selves" as the greatest goal of culture.

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