“The government solution to a problem is usually as bad as the problem.” Milton Friedman. This quote suggests that whenever there is a problem, the solution the government gives will not be better than the problem itself. It relates to the book Fahrenheit 451 because the solutions the government figured out is not reasonable. In the story, Bradbury tells the audience that censorship, conformity is a bad thing through the character Montag, whose job is to burn books, learns about his society that he is currently living in. He was inspired by a girl called Clarisse, who is a non-conformist in the book, and was taught more knowledge by Faber, an old man who keeps some books. Also in their society, there is Beatty, captain of the fire department, who tries to stop Montag from rebelling against the unfairness of the government. Furthermore, it suggests other minor characters that care only for themselves, like Mildred, Montag’s wife, cares only about getting a TV and having fun but ignores almost everything about Montag. Bradbury instills knowledge about how people should live their lives through the themes of censorship, conformity, and loss of humanity.
First of all, the editing of media is one way Bradbury teaches us how not to live lives. In the current world, censorship means the suppression of a published or broadcast material. The media is a powerful tool to manipulate public opinion; government will use this. Because people now watch a lot of movies, books, and other kinds of media, censorship may be used at times like this. According to Fahrenheit 451, the main thing that gets censored is books. Instead of just editing one part of the book to make it available for everyone to read, the people in their society burn the book. An example of censoring books is when “’colored people don’t like Little black Sambo. Burn it. [When] [w]hite people don’t feel good about Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Burn it…’” (59).
... and a puppet of the government. By adopting this attitude, Montag takes the books out of the air-conditioning ... part of the solution as everyone else is the problem. Because of the conversation with Clarisse McClellan, the ... old girl who told him of a past when people were not afraid. This all changes though when, ... which is about to be burned and who would rather die with her books then live in a jail, ...
The people do not face the problem; instead, they just destroy everything a majority amount of people dislike. Also in their society, the government controls everything because people rely on them. So when Montag the fugitive is on the streets, the government is afraid of losing control of their people so they get a “fake” Montag to kill and end the case. On the TV screen, “'[t]hey didn’t show the man’s face in focus… Even [Montag’s] best friends couldn’t tell if it was [him].” (149).
This suggests that censorship is an authoritative device that governments may use.
Equally important, through conformity, Bradbury fills one’s head with how people should live their lives. Bradbury teaches us an important concept through the characters of the story. One particular character is Beatty, who is the chief of the fire department. He explained to Montag that everyone is not “’born free… but everyone made equal.”(58).
If there are “’no mountains to make [people] cower, to judge themselves against’”, then everyone will be happy (58).
But if everyone “’must be alike’”, then it would mean that everyone is the same and they all listen to one person or group (58).
That group would be the government. From the government’s perspective, the people who conform are minions and the people who do not conform are outliers that should be eliminated. When Montag is an escapee on the run, the government told the police to “’suggest entire population in the Elm Terrace area… [to] look from windows. The fugitive cannot escape if everyone in the next minute looks from his house.” (138).
... in our society. People that are for the issue of censorship are usually from the older generation. These people consist of government officials that ... press; or of the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and petition the Government for a redress of grievances (Graham)." ... the other side of the issue many people think, neither parent nor the government should censor the type of music their ...
So a lesson Bradbury teaches is conforming is easier because people do not have to think for themselves. He portrays the people as robots, everyone looking alike, everyone programmed to have the same actions, and no one has a unique personality from the government’s point of view. Through the theme of conformity, Bradbury inspires people to stand up for themselves and be different.
Last but not least, Bradbury teaches people to live their lives through the theme loss of humanity. In their society, leisure from work is either killing people, or watching TV. Clarisse, a non-conformist in the story, is “afraid of children [her] own age.” (30).
After school, they “’head for a Fun Park to bully people…’”, also when people “’ride in the jet cars when they race on the edge of town at midnight’”, the police just care about if “’they’re insured’” (30).
The people do not care about anything but themselves. They take pleasure in people’s pain. Also, people talk about the “’same things and nobody says anything different from anyone else.” (31), if one loses touch with connections from other people, automatically, their conversations will have no meaning, it will just be a general topic without feelings. Furthermore, when Montag burns the old woman because she is hiding books in her home, instead of feeling sad or ashamed about it, people “ran out of houses all down the street” to watch (40).
Moreover, when the “fake” Montag was captured, the police let the mechanical hound to seize the victim “in a great spidering, clenching grip” in front of the audience who was watching it. Plus, it was not even the real Montag! Finally, People shouldn’t take pleasure in the pain of others as this leads to a loss of humanity.
Finally, through the themes of restriction, conformism and loss of mortality, Bradbury teaches everyone about how people should live their lives. It should not be being restricted by the government, not having to be alike with everyone else in the world, and it should definitely not be losing humanity. Even though Bradbury is telling people to stand up for themselves, but it must be reasonable. For example, when people are restricted in the society of Fahrenheit 451, it is rational to rebel. But if it was only for a trivial matter, it would not be practical to go against. Sometimes one still have to conform; otherwise the world will be a mess. Sometimes one should allow a little censorship, or the world may not have enough protection. But one should never lose their kindness, or the world may be a nasty place. All in all, relating back to the quote by Milton Friedman, the society in Fahrenheit 451 is probably a problem that the government cannot give a good solution to, but it still does not mean everything about the government is bad.
... what they are remembered for is great. The people and government of the Fertile Crescent made their share of ... . One of the things that these people struggled with was their government. There were three main cities called ... Rome went from a city-state to a world power. Although the Romans did not have many ... clothing, even in winter. This was meant to teach them self discipline and to fend for themselves, ...