In John Stuart’s viewpoint, maximizing liberty would result in optimizing happiness in the society. However, critics of his argument contend that freedom in the society could result in people making wrong choices and harming themselves, family members, and other people. Nevertheless, some themes in his work seem to counter this criticism. People should not misconstrue Stuart’s perception liberty with the unrestricted freedom that might jeopardize the wellness of other community members. Although the author argues that liberty is indispensable to promote happiness, he suggests that the society has the responsibility to exercise power over individuals if the primary objective of such control is to prevent harm to others.
Mill (230) indicate that utility is the ultimate appeal in every moral dilemma, but it must be in its broad sense. If persons exercise their liberty in a way that does not cause harm to others, the society may not impose punishments on them without evidence about their offenses. According to the author, the society guarantees different types of liberties that do not apply to all individuals. Despite advocacy to these liberties, there still exists the unqualified. For this reason, Mill (232) postulates that the only necessary form of freedom is the one that allows people to pursue happiness in their own ways as long as they do not compromise the happiness of others. Moreover, such liberties should comprise of impressions that prevent people from impending the happiness of others.
In support of his idea, Mill (232) claims that people become happy when they allow “each other to live as seems good to themselves than by compelling each to live as seems good to the rest” (Mill 232). To optimize happiness, the idea of granting freedom should only apply to people of sane minds. The society must protect children and young adults against their own actions, especially those that could result in self-harm. In this argument, Mill counters the argument that increased freedom would lead to people making bad decisions and killing others (Mill 232).
If the society was to adopt Stuart’s proposals, particular changes would be mandatory. Firstly, the most significant changes would affect the justice systems since criminal laws would change. In such situations, a person would be considered guilty only if he/she impedes others’ pursuit of happiness. In Stuart’s perspective, a civilized society should not compel an individual to do something because people deem it the right thing for themselves or others. Secondly, all the societies would shift to capitalism. Notably, capitalism promotes self-determination, which is essential to promote happiness at individual level. Lastly, the society would set up policies to limit the freedom of young adults and children. These regulations would be vital to protect them from causing harm to themselves and others.
Mill presents his view on how the society should promote happiness. He suggests that freedom can maximize happiness in the society. On the contrary, opponents of this premise contend that freedom would hurt the society, as it can lead to making wrong choices and killing others. In regard to this, Mill claims that freedom should be granted to people of rational minds, and that society should protect the immature against actions that can result in harm. He adds that freedom allowing individuals to follow own interests is crucial to ensuring people are optimally happy. However, communities require changing its laws if they were to adopt Stuart’s proposals