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Maisie Bent
Jeremy Steele
Global Civilizations
12 October 2015
The Philosophy of Anarchy
"Useless laws weaken the necessary laws." - Montesquieu. All around the world,
ever since the beginning of civilizations, there have been rules for the society to follow.
Laws are necessary, as well as leaders to enforce them. The more laws there are, the
harder it is to keep track of who is following them and who is breaking them. Few
leaders and laws are necessary for a society to be stable, safe, and civil because, humans
have morals that discern between right and wrong, people will go against laws because
they don't believe that they are true, and people don't like to live under strict orders.
Humans do have morals. Morals are formed while a child is growing up. A lot of
the time, these children have the same morals as those who've raised them. John Locke
says, "We are like chameleons, we take our hue and the color of our moral character,
from those who are around us." According to Rousseau's thinking, humans are born good
and society corrupts the initial goodness of a human being. "The family then may be
called the first model of political societies: the ruler corresponds to the father, and the
people to the children; and all, being born free and equal, alienate their liberty only for
their own advantage." (Rousseau, The Social Contract)
The morality of a person will determine whether they'll follow a set of laws or
not. If their morality disagrees with the law, they will not obey it. Both Montesquieu and
Voltaire believe strongly that religion and law should be separated. "Voltaire's notion of

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liberty also anchored his hedonistic morality, another key feature of Voltaire's
Enlightenment philosophy." (Shank, J.B., "Voltaire", The Stanford Encyclopedia of
Philosophy) Hedonism is the belief that pleasure and happiness is the most important
goal in life.
The statement made, "people don't like to live under strict order," it is true. People
want some say in what the rules that they have to follow are. The separation of powers in
a democracy is what both not "living under strict order" and having say in what laws you
have to follow. Montesquieu also believes that power should be distributed equally
among three branches of government. The three branches of government allow for no
one to have full power, and checks to make sure no one is completely in control. He
introduced new ideas, mostly for the judicial branch though. "Montesquieu, it is true,
contributed new ideas to the doctrine; he emphasized certain elements in it that had not
previously received such attention, particularly in relation to the judiciary, and he
accorded the doctrine a more important position than did most previous writers."
Everywhere on Earth where there are civilizations there are laws to follow. Some
of these laws may go too far in what they say to do. They may interfere with the morality
of some. What is needed is only necessary laws. They should be basic guidelines for
everyone to follow. Other laws are not necessary. The government enforcing them should
have checks and balances and no one person with complete control. Without laws a
civilization would crumble. With too many laws, a civilization would be filled with
chaos. Just the right amount of laws leads to happiness, growth of the civilization, and

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