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comments on livingstone's ideas about culture, society, rule of law

Reader comment on item: My Debate with London Mayor Ken Livingstone

Submitted by myth (Germany), Feb 17, 2010 at 03:55

I agree with Livingstone that every individual has the freedom to define their own cultural standard. However this does not translate into any conclusion as to what the entire society looks like from a cultural perspective. To make it simple, a freedom for an individual may pose a problem if promoted to a society level. Livingstone's assumption that a free society is governed by law and that this is all it requires from its citizens is wrong. Only totalitarian regimes do that down to the cultural level. Quite the opposite in the free world: The existence of unwritten laws of common culture is a basis of society. As a consequence such a society can do without legal restrictions on minor issues. That common cultural basis on a level of society is necessary. The combination of culture+law leads to non-equivalent societies for any such combination. It leads to parallel societies in one state if the idea of a common culture is abandoned.

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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