Foreign intervention is one of the hottest, most controversial topics today. As conflict across the seas arises, Americans are forced with the decision on whether it is our moral duty to provide foreign aid, or use the money and supplies to benefit our own country. With such a touchy subject, different sides of the issue arise.
In a recent study by the United Nations Security Council, 83% of Americans agreed that America should have the right to authorize military force to prevent human rights violations such as genocide. Many believe it is our moral duty to protect human rights around the world, regardless of the cost or logistics of doing so. Although in many cases, the military would be used, giving the potential for danger, those in favor of foreign intervention believe that it is done in order to preserve human dignity for generations to come. America was founded on ideals of democracy – the idea that people would be able to live in freedom from want and fear, and have rights to free speech and opportunity. When a patriotic citizen sees human rights violations around the world, it often strikes a chord with nationalistic pride to preserve democracy for other countries.
However, in the eighteenth century, George Washington issued powerful words of warning against foreign intervention in his infamous Neutrality Proclamation: “I have therefore thought fit by these presents to declare the disposition of the United States to observe the conduct aforesaid towards those Powers respectfully; and to exhort and warn the citizens of the United States carefully to avoid all acts and proceedings whatsoever, which may in any manner tend to contravene such disposition.” Though it was not coded into national law, its stern warnings served as a precedent for instilling ideas of anti-intervention policy internationally. People who believe that anti-intervention is best argue our support is not always appreciated by the receiving country. Instead of focusing on international policy, people who take pride in these beliefs advocate caring for the pressing needs of the nation first: homelessness, unemployment, and national hunger.
Whether you advocate foreign intervention or are not keen about it, it is vital to look at both sides of the matter. Each philosophy brings up its own set of valid points, and by being willing to look at both sides of the equation, you may find yourself gaining a new global perspective on the world.