Hasn’t the United States government restricted individual freedom? I think the intention of the United States Declaration of Independence was freedom.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Certainly, there are times in US history when the government has restricted individual freedoms.  This, of course, is not a new concept.  The Alien and Sedition Acts under the John Adams administration is probably the first example we see.  American Heritage magazine has printed various critiques of the Lincoln administration with some leading historians arguing that Lincoln had a dictatorship.  Woodrow Wilson imposed restrictions on personal liberties during World War I.  Many argue today that the Patriot Act of 2001 did the same thing.

When discussing books like Brave New World, Animal Farm, The Giver, and 1984, I like to point out to students that the purpose of these books may be that the author wanted us to keep our governments in check by asking questions.   How each individual reacts to these texts will of course be individual.  But good books will, we hope, keep people thinking.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team