Freedom Lives Within
Three people are walking down a New York City street. One is a Black man, one is an Asian woman, and the other person is a White man. One can easily picture the three people walking beside one another because the image is not bizarre or strange, rather; the image is completely normal. The vision is normal because these three American citizens have the freedom to walk where they choose, with whom they choose. The word freedom is often overlooked and taken for granted by those who have it. A popular idea of freedom is: “Freedom lets someone do whatever he chooses to do.” Although this thought of freedom is technically correct, the phrase barely scratches the surface of the idea of freedom.
Freedom comes from Old English freedom, meaning, "freedom, state of free will; charter, emancipation, deliverance” (Online Etymology Dictionary). Freedom includes possessing the ability to make a choice for one’s self. For example, the Black man walking ...view middle of the document...
Freedom is about the right to make decisions based on personal wants. Every American citizen exercises his right to freedom every day. Freedom resides in the Asian woman who can hit the snooze button on her alarm in the morning and pick up another ten minutes of sleep because no one is forcibly waking her up. Her freedom manifests itself in her job as CEO of a major corporation, a job most women did not have fifty years ago. Her freedom lies in her desire to go to college again and earn a higher degree. Her freedom is acted upon by her going and getting such a degree. She has the freedom to pick whatever school she wants. Freedom is her ultimate choice of choosing a school, and choosing what to do with her potential.
Freedom is the White man strapping on his helmet, lacing his boots, and loading his rifle as a soldier. He is freedom for his own citizens, and freedom for those citizens he liberates while serving. Freedom is his choice to serve in the military when no one forced him to do so. His service comes at a price. Worn from the combat experience, his mind can no longer function properly without help. Every time he closes his eyes he sees mangled comrades who gave the ultimate sacrifice. His freedom is the relinquishing of his mind from these thoughts. His freedom is not physical in the case of his mind. His chains are broken and his mind no longer bound by the recurring nightmares of battle. He is free from his mind. His service maintains freedom for all. Without his service, the small freedoms such as getting coffee on a whim or going back to college would not be freedoms at all. In fact, freedom would not exist in the way it does today if not for the sacrifices of soldiers.
In a way, the Black man, Asian woman, and White man are all interconnected by freedom. Although they may share no physical similarities, they are all granted the same right as one another. This right to make personal choices for one’s self is the foundation for freedom. Freedom is found in everything one is able to do, whether it be physically doing something, or being freed from a mentally bonding addiction or disease.
"Freedom." Etymonline.com. Online Etymology Dictionary. Web. 26 Sept. 2013.