Stop socialism, save America

Claire Mulkey, Staff Writer

Socialism is a complicated subject in America, often confused with Communism and dominated by partisan bias. 

Free healthcare, education, housing or employment programs. No one is poor or disadvantaged or suffering. Everyone is equal in their own protected world. 

Many question what socialism is and what consequences it possibly has for a government. Credit: Olivia Johnson

This is the image that many people wrongly associate with socialism. Those with socialist ideals want an idealized, egalitarian society that is (thankfully) unachievable. If those in America, Georgia, Roswell or even Roswell High School were completely equal, there would be zero motivation for improvement, for any success. In the school, every student, athlete, performer and leader would be indistinguishable and uninteresting. This paradise of equality is not an accurate depiction of socialism, though that is the image often associated with it. 

Gray days of poverty and starvation. Rampant unemployment and meaningless work. Limited food rations and dictators. This is the wrong idea of socialism, as well. Communism and socialism can become muddled in the minds of Americans, melted together into one story of misery, poverty and suffering.

Socialism is neither a perfect utopia of happiness, nor a depressing, futile attempt at life. Socialism is simply a system of government in which production and the economy is more collective than in a capitalistic system. 

The Democratic Socialists of America list free healthcare and strong unions as their main platforms. This group believes that “…workplaces are fundamentally authoritarian unless workers can self-organize and build collective power,” and that “in the capitalist system, you have to pay to get care or go without, and under a democratic socialist system, we would collectively provide care as a society.” On paper, these ideas sound ideal. 

However, as history has shown, the success of theories on paper does not always translate to real-life results. The countries that have socialist governments are not exactly the desired environment: Venezuela, the Soviet Union and Cuba. 

There have been some successful countries that practice socialism, but most of them are actually democratic socialists. Sweden, for example, has a government that is praised all over the world. It seems that their good education, maternity and paternity leaves, health care and other benefits are components of a perfect society, but this does not come without cost. 

Those who live in socialist countries must endure higher taxes and redistribution of wealth in order to receive these services, which are not always high quality because of the lack of capitalism. America is built on capitalism, on being the best of the best. The founding fathers designed the country in such a way that citizens have a choice whether they want to work hard and succeed, or not. The U.S. is full of choices, but with increased government regulation and interference, this freedom of choice may be infringed upon. 

Socialism is not Communism, socialism is not a perfect, happy world. Socialism is the government intervening on behalf of the citizens, while also at the cost of the citizens. Socialism provides many positive outcomes for countries with a “…relatively small and homogenous…” population, according to the World Population Review. Unfortunately, these words do not describe the United States. Socialism cannot be considered a valid option for America.