Political Socialization Essay

Submitted By jeremyprince
Words: 963
Pages: 4

Political Socialization Defined a) Four political ideologies that accurately reflect and contribute to most American political ideals are liberalism, libertarianism, conservatism, and communitarian ism. These ideologies do not distinctly categorize the individuals political socialization since many issues and beliefs held within each sector overlap each other. However, many Americans use these terms to define their overall political opinions and help define where they stand on the political spectrum. Liberalism is the belief that freedom and autonomy should be priority for the individual. Liberals typically support the separation of church and state, a limited government, and protection of private property. These philosophical principles were the main support for early capitalism and would help inspire the American Revolution. Other characteristics include opposition of free markets when harmful to an individual, support for the common good, and social conditions- popular traits of modern liberalism that has been shaped by the current state of our country. Conservative ideology is most concerned with defending tradition, social stability, historical institutions, and respect for authority. Society is regarded as one entity that depends on the health of others for the well-being of each other. Conservatives maintain that humans are inherently fallible, therefore, they believe citizens should have social roles in the community to keep society bound together. Also, conservatives tend to support churches, charities, family, and moral codes to keep a sound social structure. Communitarian ideals focus on social good and the role of communities in shaping societies. Participation in communal functions gives meaning to our lives, and an individuals status is defined in the eyes of others within the community. Strong communitarians support many principles held within conservatism such as social civility, public manners, family life and morals. Weak communitarianism, on the other hand, accepts more liberal views more accustomed to todays social diversities, such as feminism. Libertarians believe that the less they are interfered with, the freer they are. Individual freedom is held as the main priority. Libertarianism offers a small justification for a very limited state of government, which separates them from anarchists. Left libertarians typically support a participatory form of democratic association, while right-siders regard free association with an unregulated capitalist market as a way of ensuring personal freedom. b) I think I fall slightly on the left side of the political spectrum in between libertarianism and and liberalism. I support limited government control on the individual and a separation of church and state. Although I agree with principles of conservatism and communitarianism such as family, marriage, morals, and community relations, I dont believe that citizens have to be involved in ones community to keep society bound together and that their social status is to be decided by others within the community. There should be regulation in our free market economy that disable the rich from becoming too rich, and therefore too powerful, as money plays a huge role in politics today. However, the government shouldnt guarantee employment to its citizens. Therefore, I do not think I deviate too far from the middle of the political spectrum as I believe that certain values held within each sphere of politics are all important in shaping American politics, but I feel that the main priority of our government should be freedom. c) The most influential factors in my political socialization has been school and the media. I have learned through school that politics and the policy making system in America is corrupt and has become aristocratic. Many politicians are elected with the support of political action committees- vehicles through which corporations can donate money to a campaign. This can allow the extremely rich