In collectivism, it is some sort of group rather than an individual who is at the center of all social, political, and economic concerns, and issues. Those who are proponents of this ideology say that the interests and claims of groups (it may even be a state) supersede those of individuals.
Collectivism is the idea that the individual’s life belongs not to him but to the group or society of which he is merely a part, that he has no rights, and that he must sacrifice his values and goals for the group’s “greater good.” According to collectivism, the group or society is the basic unit of moral concern, and the individual is of value only insofar as he serves the group. As one advocate of this idea puts it: “Man has no rights except those which society permits him to enjoy. From the day of his birth until the day of his death society allows him to enjoy certain so-called rights and deprives him of others.
The focus of thinking in individualism is the individual. This doctrine believes that society is there, but it is ultimately made up of individuals who choose and act. The foundation of individualism lies in one’s moral right, to pursue one’s own happiness. However, it also believes that it is necessary for individuals to preserve and defend institutions that have been made to protect one’s right to pursue happiness.
Individualism is the idea that the individual’s life belongs to him and that he has an inalienable right to live it as he sees fit, to act on his own judgment, to keep and use the product of his effort, and to pursue the values of his choosing. It’s the idea that the individual is sovereign, an end in himself, and the fundamental unit of moral concern. This is the ideal that the American Founders set forth and sought to establish when they drafted the Declaration and the Constitution and created a country in which the individual’s rights to life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness were to be recognized and protected.
The philosophies that adhere to Collectivism include Communism, Marxism, Socialism, Progressivism, and modern-day Liberalism. This is the belief to which the current Democrat Party and many of the Republican establishment adhere. Individualism in North America began as early as the days of Jamestown, the first permanent English colony in the Americas. It began out of necessity. Jamestown originally practiced collectivism or a form of socialism. As always happens under socialism, the economics were failing and Jamestown was about to become but a mere footnote in history.
In order to survive, the citizens of Jamestown adopted individualism where individuals were responsible for themselves, where individuals made their own decisions and suffered the consequences or reaped the rewards, and where individuals owned their own property and enterprises. This simple decision to eliminate collectivism and adopt individualism was the reason Jamestown became so important in our history. The colonists in Plymouth went through the same scenario and survived the initial attempt at a collectivist society by switching to individualism just like the people of Jamestown.
Our founders were well grounded in this concept of individualism. To some degree, it was this grounding that led them to declare their independence from and war on the most powerful nation in the world at that time. After their improbable victory against Great Britain, the founders continued to adhere to those same principles of individualism.
It was much later in our history that collectivism began to creep into our society. This concept of the supremacy of the collective and the minimization of the individual was greatly enhanced by Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, and Barack Obama. All three of these individuals, along with their followers despised the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution.
The reasons for the Collectivists animosity toward and hatred of these documents is the essence for which they stand. The core of the Declaration of Independence is, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
This statement recognizes that it is the Creator and not man nor government that has bestowed certain unalienable rights upon the individual. The Collectivist believes all rights come from man or government and thus can be taken by man or government when the elimination of these rights is believed to be in the best interest of the collective. Today we are led to believe by the Collectivists, that it is governments duty to guarantee the outcome of equality and the right to opportunity endowed by the Creator is non-existent.
The Collectivist also believes that the individual derives his rights from government as opposed to the belief of the founders that government receives its power from the consent of the citizens. In other words, the Collectivist believes that government is the sovereign and the citizen is a slave to the state.
The United States Constitution was written to protect the citizen from the inevitable evil of government. Patrick Henry explained this when he said, “The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government - lest it come to dominate our lives and interests.”
The Collectivist believes it is the duty and responsibility of government to control the lives and the interests of the individual. The Collectivist believes the ambition, desires, and accomplishments of any individual should always be subjugated to what they would say was "for the good of the group." Therefore, the Collectivist supports the concept that every participant receives the same acknowledgement regardless of contribution. Therefore, the Collectivist rejects special acknowledgement for superior achievement in things like academics, business, and athletics.
The United State Constitution also was designed to limit the role of the federal government. The Constitution specifies the powers we the people gave the federal government. The 10th amendment reinforces that limitation. The Collectivist believes in big government. The Collectivist supports the power of the government to confiscate the private property of an individual and redistribute the property as they deem “the best interest of the group.”
Yes, the Collectivist despises the basic principles upon which our nation was founded and propelled the United States to become “a shining city on a hill” for all the world to see and to which all could aspire. The Collectivist believes it is those very principles of individualism that bring about the oppression of the masses. The individualist believes it is those very principles that liberate the masses.
The Marxist/Progressives (Democrats) are proponents of Collectivism. It is for this reason the Marxist/Progressives (Democrats) despise the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution.
"The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government - lest it come to dominate our lives and interests,” said Patrick Henry.