I find this scenario useful when considering any issue that involves being “captive” (more or less) to a geographic location. How much does this “captivity” allow others to control us or force us to make concessions to the will of others? For example, the issue of immigration, when considering this scenario, is seen as one of necessarily forcing fellow natives to live with either open borders or controlled borders.
Many scientists hold to a worldview that is strictly scientific, one in which “free will” is taken to being an illusion or an old superstition. These same scientists will also maintain that we have moral and ethical responsibility for the actions we take. These are incompatible stances.
If liberty is seen as an individual personal freedom, it must contain a proviso that properly constrains it from interfering with the personal freedom of others. Now let us consider defining liberty as a social environmental condition…
Below are some conditions or situations when coercion may be justified. They are designed to be concise yet comprehensive. I have defined terms as clearly as I can, but they may still be open to interpretation and judgement. Think about them and see if you can improve upon them or develop your own!
If we place our protection in the charge of sophisticated and powerful machinery (aka government and police states), above any individual autonomy and discretion, we will allow ourselves to become dominated by self-created protection systems.
Don’t get me wrong. Helping others is good, positive, and beneficial. Not helping others does not generate or produce harm. Let me further clarify my ethics of the Liberty. You may stop my hand from harming others, but you may not force my hand to help others.
The goal of the present thought experiment is to explore how much of existing social institutions, practices, and human relationships depend upon physical violence or the threat of it in order to function or exist.