Political freedom refers to the lack of interference with the supreme, independent authority over an area or even territory by individual(s) through use of coercion or aggression. A state is said to be free if her government does not oppress her people. A society which is not free is the said to be a totalitarian society and is characterized by absence of political freedom with an aim to regulate almost every aspect of behavior. With such a society, freedom would refer to human relations only and coercion is a common phenomenon (Phillips, 276). The concept of political freedom is closely associated with civil liberties and individual rights. Political freedom is not a standalone concept but an aggregation of many concepts and freedoms which include; freedom of assembly, freedom of association, freedom of movement, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of press, freedom of thought, freedom from unreasonable seizure, scientific freedom and academic freedom.
All forms of freedoms shape the political freedom for it is the nature of the politics of any country that they are allowed or even denied (Friedrich A., 84). While freedom is more on the sovereignty of any state and her people, democracy refers to a government of the people, by the people for the people. Democracy can direct where the power to govern the people is directly from the people or it can be representative democracy where people elect or choose representatives to join the authorities on the behalf of the people (Brown H., 44). Whether democracy promotes freedom or not is another subject for discussion. Many nations in the world are advocating for democratic space or atmosphere to be promoted among the countries tio allow the citizens to exercise their freedom.
The United States of America has had a complex political system than most of the other government systems in the world. This is associated with the social divisions in the United States of America. The United States of America has both whites and black Americans. The coexistence of these two groups has not been very friendly. The whites always see the blacks as a lesser gene that incapable of doing what the whites can do. This kind of a division and oppression is seen on almost all the key sectors of the United States Economy from political world, government appointments and even business. As a result, the blacks have struggled their way out of poverty and even if little has been achieved, there is some light at the end of the tunnel. For instance, due to oppression, most blacks went into the music industry where they felt they can influence a large number of people especially the youth. Their music is mostly rap and the message is fighting the oppressing authorities.
The whites rule the United States of America. The ruling class has gone further more and above any other in the world to suppress any public discussion about the social classes in the USA. Anticommunist groups in the late 1940 campaigned to outlaw any public opinions on socialism, Marxism among other classes in the United States. Those behind the move were the likes of John McCarthy. The public did not take it lightly and instead responded with fury. It resulted to the 1960 civil unrest in the United States of America. The government put some efforts to frustrate any efforts by the civil society to liberate itself through divide, confuse and rule. Things went out of hand and the American working class started emerging as an independent social force. Other groups like the human rights groups, labor movements and gay liberation all emerged. There was a large division of the society between the small group of capitalist who owned the production factors and was mostly the whites and the majority of the population who must sell their labor capabilities to make a living who were mostly blacks.
With those characteristics of the United States of America and its economy, freedom had no meaning especially fir the oppressed and they to fight for it. The Democratic Party became the vehicle to liberation especially for the blacks. Oppressions were along the lines of race and gender. The party recruited blacks, females and Hispanic politicians (Patrick, 56). With these efforts, the last twelve years of the United States of America has been under two Democratic presidents and one republican with the post of United States secretary of state being given to white man, black man. This can be seen as a step forward towards the achieving freedom through fighting. The biggest hurdle to clear remains not on the racial ground but on the economic division. All these leaders are representatives of ruling class of the US and the world for that matter but not for blacks or white. Barack Obama on being elected the president of the United States of America crowned the fight. Also the dream of martin Luther King jnr. came into fulfillment that one day there will be a more united society in USA where blacks and whites will be treated equally. He is the first African American president and he has overseen the biggest hand over of resources to the rich and Wall Street speculator in history of the United States of America. He has also promoted nationwide wage cutting and union busting and in this Obama has demonstrated that he is out to serve not to be bonked by his skin color or even origin. United States of America still faces the challenge of a gap along economic endowments with 1 per cent of the population owning 40 per cent of the US wealth and monopolizing about 20 per cent of the total US income.
Affirmative action in the public sector
Affirmative action is a policy by the government with an aim to fight imbalances and injustices within its citizens. The injustices result unfairness and lack of a level ground for the players. This has been the case in the United States of America. Initially it was along racial biases where the blacks could not mix with the whites; some jobs were reserved for the whites, the big estates and cities were seen to belong to the whites. This is how the northern America has developed to a first world while countries in the Southern America have remained struggling and even today are classified as second world and they are mostly occupied by the blacks. Currently there are biases along economic grounds where the rich rule America and make decisions.
Affirmative action would correct these anomalies. The policy though difficult to implement for those in authority and the rich will fight it, will ensure that there is a balance between the whites and the blacks in government appointments among other white-collar jobs. Women should be equally represented as well as men. According to the protection clause of the 14th amendment, every citizen needs to be given an equal opportunity. Citizens should not be exposed to unfairness. For this to be realized then affirmative action is inevitable for under normal and real circumstances the level ground cannot be achieved for some people in the same economy are so much ahead of the others with resources and political power and hence the government needs to put some checks and balances.