There are certain general duties that people have towards others simply because the latter are humans. Besides, there are other special duties that individuals possess towards certain groups simply because they possess some special attributes of interest. According to Goodin, (1988), in the contemporary world systems, it is obviously wrong to accord priorities to claims perpetrated by one’s compatriots. The modern world has become a more capitalistic society where every individual has self-centered interests. As Goodin claims, the interests of compatriots are often considered significant in a socialist society which is hardly tenable in the modern world. As a result, the concerns of Goodin ascribes to the notion that a capitalist society hardly considers third party’s interests prior to their own.
An instance that involves special duties emanates from the rest of the society and is however a major challenge to abide by. Besides, certain philosophers have been seeking to analyze the essence of patriotic duties with regard to its best consequences in the society. Duties of special concerns for the good of one’s country and compatriots like any other duties are often justified by the consequences of their adoptions. In many instances however, the consequences are best felt when the priorities given are targeted to special individuals of special interest such as family members. This is critical in the modern world in particular. Indeed, special duties are deemed to mediate between individuals’ fundamental duties and make possibilities of their effective discharges. Moreover, special duties are easily controlled by individuals with their particular insights developed from the perspective of special interests (Müller 2009). In this regard, the modern society largely subscribes to their duties of special groups as opposed to compatriots as the latter have been proven to be hardly controlled from the individuals’ independent potential.
The adoption of a focus on special duties as claimed by Goodin is also one of the main focus points for the modern society since individuals focused to special duties develop divisions of moral labor that are essential for their capacities to do good, and such act is limited by the resources available to them as well as the circumstances of their operations. Every individual can be of great importance to those individuals close to them relative to those considerably far from them as far as social relationships are concerned (Brighouse & Swift 2011). Through attendance of the first person and the notion of ‘our own’, individuals promote a sense of goodness for humanity in the best ways possible. In essence, the focus on special duties provides a collective framework of developing a patriotic front which is easily achievable in an alternative phase of compatriots.
In many instances, patriots perceive their accounts of love and loyalties to their country strange to their feeling of patriotism. Indeed, the focus on the relatives and special persons in one’s life often presents special concerns for the good of their country while at the same time perpetrating the concerns of all compatriots through the concerns of individual goodness. On the focus on the whole country, the compatriot is often challenging to ascribe to the benefits attributed to the same. This is particularly the case as a result of the immense focus with little if any possible measure of excellence or achievements in the long-run (Brighouse & Swift 2011). Individuals in the modern world have become largely attuned to short-term goals that must be achieved, an aspect that is often associated with increasing the zeal to perform better amidst having goals on importance of compatriotism.
The focus on special duties presents a concern for one’s country’s well-being as a mechanism of assigning individuals some kind of universal duties. Special duties are therefore typical universal duties that are often responsible for possible achievement of other general duties of a patriot more effectively. Patriotic duties are charged with possession of a moral force towards achieving universal duties. In the face of focusing on special individuals in one’s life, every individual is ascribed to focusing on the benefitting of their own, as opposed to fellow country-men (Brighouse & Swift 2011). Although this perspective creates a notion of intolerance, its long-term benefits on the country’s patriotic chapter is elaborate and beneficial to majority than mere focus on the general principles of patriotism.
There is a special relationship between patriot, patria and compatriots which entails: love and identification. Patriotism is often posited as an associative duty. In this sense, it is anchored on special relationships as an intrinsically important aspect that constitutes duties with special concerns for the good of individuals that are closely related. Some duties however are not means of establishing or maintaining individuals in relationships but can be contemplated in the sense that those in a relationship possess a special duty pertaining to the well-beings of one another. Any individuals that can deny having special duties for the good of their friends demonstrates that they no longer treat and perceive the individual concerned as a friend hence the end of their friendship. Similarly, anyone who denies that all people have a special duty for the good of their fellow friends demonstrates that they do not understand the principles of true friendship or family relations (Veen 2008). By virtue of this understanding, it is important to note that individuals that are closely linked are easily incorporated into a common pool of interests.
On the other hand, Andrew, M. (1997), posits that the duties of special concern of the good of compatriots is anchored on values attached to the relationships existing between compatriots and is more viable relative to the typical citizenship. On the contrary, Andrew does not ascribe to the legal status in reference to ‘citizenship’ but rather the moral perspective of a citizenship that entails developing equal standings. In particular, citizenship in this case is essentially valuable relationship and locates a pool of special duties that fellow citizens have on each other. However, mere citizenship does not accord the commitments that individuals have to fulfill their duties on their neighbors (Brighouse & Swift 2011). As a result, special duties enhance the attachment to fulfillment of individual duties towards each other.
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