Sample Essay on Freedom vs. Security

Freedom vs. Security


Freedom is regarded as the rights that are enshrined to a person by the law while security is the protection that is given to the freedom and the persons guaranteed to these freedoms. Sullivan (p. 33) notes that both freedom and security guarantee one to not to be deprived of freedom arbitrarily, being detained without trial, not to be punished in a cruel manner and ensure that rights are not violated.

Freedom over Safety

A Brewster intellectual debate of 2015 brought many scholars together to examine the question; freedom and security which is important? As explained by Waard (p. 22), the first speaker, Sandamini, pointed at the precarious trajectory that societies will face if they choose to prioritize security over liberty citing an example of Guantanamo Bay. In his speech, Sandamini emphasized freedom over safety in order to foster free societies. He concluded that governments should enhance citizen freedom compared to safety.

Additionally, many scholars have come forth arguing that prisoners’ freedom is more important than security. This is because prisoners feel that security without freedom is considered worthless. Prioritizing security over freedom will lead to erosion of totalitarianism state, for instance, the case of slaves in America who lived in fairly secure environment but without freedom.

There has been many emerging questions regarding the line between freedom and security; Stefoff argues in order to enhance political stability in countries, freedom is more than security. This is because in societies where there is freedom, there is no erosion of state morals, prevents tyrannical regimes, and curbs civil unrests.

Safety over Freedom

On the other hand, a section of scholars argue that citizen security is more important than freedom. Many citizens in many countries across the globe value safety over freedom (Velte p. 55). This is because in secure countries cases of crime are minimal. Further, security ensures that there is no violation of freedom rights as it ensures that laws are protected against malicious minded persons who need to satisfy their ego motives.

Etzioni (p. 38) explains that with security, there is guaranteed freedom of doing everything including travelling. There will be no killings recorded in such societies, no harm perpetrated to others, and no anarchy. According to Sullivan (p. 34), security has played a major role of ensuring practice of basic freedoms. It is through security that freedom is enhanced.

Both security and freedom plays distinct roles as without safety there would be no freedom.  Freedom comes when people know that they are safe, for instance, terrorism. Citizens feel unsafe then they are not free to travel or do what they need because of fear of terrorism attacks that pose a danger of insecurity. It is through security that freedom is born. Security further ensures that citizens are safe thus bringing up the virtue of freedom.


In conclusion, both security and freedom plays critical roles since without safety there will be no freedom. People perceive to be having freedom when they know they are safe. This study also notes that though independent, security leads to creation of freedom.

Issues of both security and freedom not only apply to the national matters but also in different situations such as work place where people hold different perceptions towards security and freedom. It is notably viewed that freedom will be derived from the job while security will ensure that the job needs are taken care of.

Works Cited

Etzioni, Amitai, and Jason H. Marsh. Rights vs. public safety after 9/11: America in the age of terrorism. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2012. Print.

Stefoff, Rebecca. Security vs. privacy: open for debate. New York: Marshall Cavendish Benchmark, 2008. Print.

Sullivan. Environmental Law Handbook (20th ed.). Lanham, Md.: Government Institutes. 2012. Print.

Velte, Elsenpeter. Research: The practical approach. New York: McGraw-Hill. 2013. Print.

Waard, Dick De. Human factors: security and safety. Maastricht: Shaker Publishing, 2011. Print.