Thomas Paine: The Rights Of Man

812 words - 4 pages

In Thomas Paine's The Rights of Man, a explicit philosophical idea is stated in which the purpose of government and the workings of American as a union is discussed. Paine believes that in order to have a successful government the ones who are governing must work with those who are being governed. In The Rights of Man Paine states what the central government must do in order to proved equal opportunity and justice for each individual. Based off of the words of Paine a republic is the sure form of governing body that will insure justice and equality to each American. Many of Paine's ideas based off of his beliefs of government still apply to today's society such as taxes, wages, and welfare for the poverty stricken citizens. While many today praise other political figures for "first discussing" these issues, it was in fact Thomas Paine who first spoke of these ideas in his pamphlet, The Rights of Man.
Thomas Paine believed that the best way to govern was to listen to the people and to assist them in any way possible. There needed to be a balance between the governing and the governed. To do so, the government needed to provide a system that would create equal opportunity for all its citizens. Institutions such as income tax, medicare, and food-stamps all came from Paine's ideas in The Rights of Man. One man whose ideas were very similar to Paine's was Thomas Jefferson. A quote from Jefferson that relates the two men's ideas is as followed: "The Purpose of government is to enable the people of the nation to live in safety and happiness. Government exists for the interests of the governed, not the governors" (Jefferson). This idea still pertains to the ideals on governing today.This quote given by President Barack Obama compares the ideas of the two men despite the difference in time, "If the people cannot trust their government to do the job for which it exists- to protect them and to promote their common welfare- all else is lost" (Obama). Each of these political minds all have one common idea, that the purpose of government it to protect and provide for American citizens.
While the idea of justice and equality for all is wonderful on paper, everyone is different. Based on this observation, it can be concluded that a government that pleases everyone cannot exists. To please everyone is not the purpose of government either....

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