Mills` central argument is that there is a “racial contract” that is even more fundamental to Western society than the social contract. This racial contract primarily determines who is considered a legal and political person in its own right, and thus defines the parameters of who can “move” into the freedom and equality promised by the social contract. Some people, especially white men, are individuals in their own right according to the racial contract. As such, they are granted the right to conclude the statutes and certain legal contracts. They are considered completely human and therefore deserve equality and freedom. Their status as full-fledged persons gives them greater social power. In particular, it gives them the power to conclude contracts to be the subject of the contract, while other persons are denied such a privilege and are relegated to the status of contractual objects. However, the situation is not hopeless. Because people are reasonable, they can see their way out of such a state by recognizing the laws of nature that show them the means by which they can escape the state of nature and create a civil society. The first and most important law of nature requires that every human being be ready to seek peace when others are willing to do the same, while retaining the right to continue waging war when others are not seeking peace.
Since they are reasonable and recognize the rationality of this fundamental commandment of reason, people can be expected to build a social contract that allows them to live a different life than they have in the state of nature. This contract consists of two separate contracts. First, they must agree to found society by collectively and mutually renouncing the rights they had against each other in the state of nature. Second, they must equip a person or gathering of persons with the power and authority to enforce the original contract. In other words, to ensure that they escape the state of nature, they must both agree to live together according to common laws and create a mechanism for the application of the social contract and the laws that compose it. Since the sovereign is endowed with the authority and power to impose sanctions for breaches of contract that are worse than not being able to act as he pleases, people have good, if selfish, reasons to adapt to the artificiality of morality in general and justice in particular. Society becomes possible because, while in the state of nature there was no power capable of “overwhelming” them all, there is now an artificially and conventionally superior and more powerful person who can force men to cooperate. While living under the authority of a ruler can be difficult (Hobbes argues that because people`s passions can overwhelm their mental health, the ruler must have absolute authority for the contract to succeed), at least it`s better than living in the state of nature. And no matter how much we can resist it, how badly a sovereign manages the affairs of the state and regulates our own lives, we never have the right to oppose his power because it is the only thing that stands between us and what we most want to avoid, the state of nature. Although self-love has its origins in sexual competition and comparison within small societies, it only reaches its full toxicity when combined with a growing material interdependence between people. In the discourse on inequality, Rousseau traces the growth of agriculture and metallurgy and the first establishment of private property, as well as the emergence of inequality between those who own land and those who do not own land.
In an unequal society, people who need both the social good of recognition and material goods such as food, warmth, etc. become entangled in social relationships that harm both their freedom and self-esteem. Subordinates need superiors to access food; Supervisors need subordinates who work for them and also give them the recognition they need. In such a structure, there is a clear incentive for people to distort their true beliefs and desires in order to achieve their goals. Thus, even those who receive the apparent love and admiration of their subordinates cannot find satisfaction for their self-love. This trope of misrepresentation and frustration is most clearly addressed in Rousseau`s portrait of the figure of the European minister towards the end of the discourse on inequality, a figure whose need to flatter others to secure his own desires leads to his alienation from himself. These two principles are linked by a certain order. The first principle, the distribution of civil liberties as far as possible in accordance with equality, precedes the second principle, which distributes social and economic goods. In other words, we cannot decide to give up some of our civil liberties in favour of greater economic advantage. Rather, we must meet the requirements of the first principle before moving on to the second. From Rawls` point of view, this series of principles expresses a fundamental rational preference for certain types of goods, that is, those embodied in civil liberties, over other types of goods, that is, economic benefits.
Given that the end of the “unification of people in the common good” (para. 124) is the preservation of their wealth and the preservation of their life, liberty and well-being in general, Locke can easily imagine the conditions under which the pact with the government is destroyed and people have the right to rely on the authority of a civilian government, like a king. When the executive power of a government turns into tyranny, for example by the dissolution of the legislature and thus the denial of the people`s ability to legislate for its own preservation, then the resulting tyrant puts himself in a state of nature and, in particular, in a state of war with the people, and they then have the same right to self-defence, as they had done before a pact to found the company. In other words, the justification for the authority of the executive component of government is the protection of the property and well-being of the people, so that when this protection no longer exists, or when the king becomes a tyrant and acts against the interests of the people, they have the right, if not a complete obligation, to oppose their authority. The social pact can be dissolved and the process of creating a political society can be revived. Over time, however, humanity has faced some changes. As the total population grew, the ways in which people could meet their needs had to change. People slowly began to live together in small families, and then in small communities. Divisions of labor were introduced, both within and between families, and discoveries and inventions made life easier and gave rise to leisure. Such free time inevitably led people to make comparisons between themselves and others, leading to public values that led to shame and envy, pride and contempt.
The most important, according to Rousseau, was the invention of private property, which represented the decisive moment in the development of humanity from a simple and pure state to a state marked by greed, competition, vanity, inequality and vice. For Rousseau, the invention of property means the “fall into sin” of humanity from the state of nature. Rousseau`s ideas on education are mainly presented in Emile. In this work, he advances the idea of “negative education,” which is a form of “child-centered” education. His main idea is that education should be carried out as much as possible according to the development of the child`s natural abilities through a seemingly autonomous process of discovery. This contrasts with an educational model where the teacher is an authority figure who imparts knowledge and skills according to a given program. Rousseau relies here on his thesis of natural goodness, which he affirms at the beginning of the book, and his educational plan includes the protection and development of the natural goodness of the child at various stages, as well as the isolation of the child from the leading will of others. At least until puberty, the educational program includes a sequence of manipulations of the environment by the tutor. The child is not told what to do or think, but is made to draw his own conclusions as a result of his own explorations, the context of which has been carefully arranged.
The first phase of the program begins in childhood, where Rousseau`s crucial concern is to avoid the idea that human relationships are essentially those of domination and subordination, an idea that can be too easily encouraged in infants by combining their own dependence on parental care and their power to attract attention through crying. .