You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.
Society is based on rules and laws. It could not function if individuals were free to do whatever they wanted to do. To what extent do you agree or not?
Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.
Write at least 250 words.
It is true that throughout human history, people living in social groups have always made rules and laws to govern their conduct. While a few people argue in favour of a free and lawless society, I completely agree that the results would be disastrous if individuals were able to do whatever they liked.
Firstly, the idea of crime would not exist if there were no laws to act as a deterrent. For example, domestic violence, murder, assaults, and drug-trafficking could all be carried out freely. Without laws, there could be no organisations to enforce the law. This situation would benefit the most ruthless individuals who have no morality and have no concern for those who are more vulnerable.
Secondly, regulations on environmental protection are increasingly recognised as essential. If such laws do not exist, or if they can be ignored, then the ecological crisis which results will lead to the destruction of all human life. Huge fires, started by individual landowners, have already devastated the Amazon rainforest. Companies will discharge chemical waste into rivers, and nobody will be held accountable for their actions.
Finally, in terms of public health services, it would be impossible to control the outbreak of an epidemic if each person could do what they wanted. For instance, in the present coronavirus crisis, the spread of the virus would be very rapid if no restrictions were imposed. There would be widespread suffering and mortality.
In conclusion, society would collapse without rules and laws. These define those forms of behaviour which are socially acceptable, and complete freedom for each individual would simply be the ‘law of the jungle’.
Vocabulary from crime:
to act as a deterrent: a measure that makes somebody less likely to do something
Example: Longer prison sentences would act as a deterrent and be a useful measure to tackle rising crime.
drug trafficking: importing and selling illegal drugs
Example: Some people argue that legalising drugs would end the evil of drug trafficking and its violence.
to enforce the law: to make sure that the law is obeyed
Example: The role of the police and the courts is to enforce the law.
Vocabulary from society:
domestic violence: violence among family members in the home
Example: Children who witness domestic violence between parents often develop problems.
to be socially acceptable: agreed or approved of by most people in a society
Example: Smoking in public places is no longer socially acceptable in many countries.
Vocabulary from the environment:
an ecological crisis: a serious situation that occurs when the environment of a species or a population changes in a way that destabilizes its continued survival
Example: Environmental degradation caused by human activity is provoking an ecological crisis that threatens our existence.
to discharge chemical waste: to dispose of waste products from chemical processes.
Example: Nowadays, more and more companies and industrial zones have been discharging chemical waste into rivers, causing death to many fish and other aquatic animals.
to hold sbdy accountable for + noun/gerund: to consider someone responsible for something; to blame something on someone
Example: Companies which discharge chemical waste from their factories into the sea or into rivers must be held accountable for their actions and be fined heavily.
Vocabulary from health:
public health services: the agencies funded by the government to protect and promote the health of the population
Example: I would argue that funding for public health services should be the main priority of all governments.
the outbreak of an epidemic: a large number of diseases occurring at the same time in a particular community
Example: A lack of government programs for vaccination and regular health care may lead to an epidemic outbreak, particularly in developing countries.
to govern [verb]: to legally control the people of a country in order to introduce new laws or administer public services
Example: For many years, India was governed by officials of the British Empire.
lawless [adjective]: a society where laws do not exist, or are not respected
Example: The police announced that they will not tolerate lawless behaviour at football matches.
ruthless [adjective]: hard and cruel people or behaviour
Example: The bank was robbed by a gang of ruthless criminals.
to devastate [verb]: to totally destroy a place or area
Example: After the volcano erupted, the surrounding countryside was devastated, and many people died.
the law of the jungle [expression]: a situation in which some people are prepared to harm or kill others to succeed or survive
Example: In the parts of the city controlled by criminal gangs, the only law is the jungle law.