Thomas More and Plato, two old friends, run into one another at a Starbucks one day.
Plato: Is that—It can’t be… Thomas More?! Long time no see! How long has it been? Five years?
More: Plato! Wow good so see you, how have you been?
P: Not so good actually. My teacher, Socrates was unjustly executed for his teachings, or as they put it “corrupting of young minds.”
M: Yeah man I heard about that. I’m so sorry. Why don’t you sit down? I’d love to catch up.
P: Sure, I’d love to! So, what are your views on democracy?
M: Very good question. I was just thinking about democracy. I, for one, think a representative democracy, with elected public officials is the way to go. I believe that whenever an issue arises, the elected official should consult with his electors on how to proceed.
P: Hahahah oh Thomas, you always were so naïve. Haven’t you considered the implications of democracy?
M: Such as?
P: For one, with democracy comes corrupt, wealthy politicians who can practically buy their way into office. A perfect society would function best with leaders who are educated from birth and know what is best for their country. The idea that all men are created equal is absurd. Some men are smarter and more apt than others, and clearly those should be the ones with authority.
M: But what about the majority of society and what they think? The people are the only ones who can determine who is apt to rule them, because they are the ones being ruled. Also, how can you be so sure that everyone will be willing to fulfill their duties and contribute to society when they are not given proper representation?
P: Because everyone will work in the role best suited for him. There is no reason to be unhappy when everyone contributes to and therefore, lives in a just and equal society. Besides, with a democracy there is a huge imbalanced gap between the rich and the poor. The rich people will rule and will want private property. In democracies, people only value individual liberties and honor. Everyone will be greedy! There is absolutely nothing good about democracy ever.
M: Listen, I know your friend Socrates was executed and all, but get over it. There are positives to democracy that you’re completely overlooking.
(Short pause where Plato is taken aback by More’s inconsiderate and hurtful comment)
M: I’m sorry. That was uncalled for. I was just trying to say that I don’t think you should let one event cloud your opinion. My point is, rulers who are elected by the people are bound to do what is right for the people. Not to mention, a man of the people is likely to better understand the people.
P: Hm, I guess we will never agree on this matter, best just to let it go, enjoy our coffee, and perhaps discuss less litigious subjects.
M: Yes I suppose you’re right. So, tell me, what are your views on education?