What would John Locke say about the life of the Unknown Citizen?

What would John Locke say about the life of the Unknown Citizen?

John Locke was one of the most prominent writers in his era. His writings focused on the government, as well as the rule of law. To understand Locke’s philosophy, religious understanding of life is necessary. The poem The Unknown Citizen talks about an individual who had been honored by society, as well as the state, for being normal, and acting according to state laws. According to Locke, understanding political power comes after knowing the natural state of men. Locke believed that the government should serve its people through offering natural rights, which include rights to life, autonomy, and property.

Locke could have perceived the “unknown citizen” as a peace-abiding individual who lived a natural life. The laws of nature guide natural life. Even before the creation of the first man, the laws of nature were there. The “unknown citizen” lived harmoniously with other people in the community, and always satisfied his employers. He lived an average life, and was always ready to serve his country any capacity. He understood his role in society, and ensured that he treated everyone equally. He endeavored to remain natural even in the modern time. This proved that he acknowledged the political power, which guides on state laws, community life, and defense for the public good.

Political power has different connotations: the authority of a magistrate towards the accused is different from the father’s authority over his children. The “unknown citizen” distinguished such powers, and did not frustrate his bosses with unnecessary demands. Locke would have claimed that the “unknown citizen” was a free man who never did anything wrong worth noticing. The unrecognized citizen understands the state laws and policies. He was fully insured because he valued his natural state. As the family head, he worked hard in the factory to provide for his family. He was quite patriotic and followed what was happening within the state boundaries through reading newspapers and listening to the radio.

Locke argued that the state of war brings hostility and devastation to human life, but individuals should be awarded right to annihilate anything that threaten their lives. States have the responsibility to ensure the security of the innocent by preserving their freedom. The “unknown citizen” understood that there can be no peace during the war, thus, he had to take a step to protect his rights through maintaining peace. He participated in the war and never indulged in criminal activities. To maintain peace is to evade war and destruction of human nature. Society needs such men who take the initiative to thwart efforts of those who try to provoke the natural state of men.  

In a state of equality, power and jurisdiction reciprocate each other. Locke pointed out that the state of nature allows the law of nature to govern it. The “unknown citizen” is a family man, who has ensured that the state of nature remains through procreation. As a father, he does not complain to teachers about his children’s behavior because he understands the order and the process of resolving complaints. The state of nature restrains individuals from invading other people’s rights, as each individual needs a space to undertake his/her responsibilities. The unrecognized citizen is quite sincere and frank in offering public opinion. He is extremely careful not to provoke rebellion among the society through his opinion. The state has strived to ensure equality through allowing the “unknown citizen” a chance to own property that enhances his happiness.