Common Humanity

All socialists hold a mixed but ultimately optimistic perspective on human nature. They argue that when left to its own devices, human nature becomes corrupted, and a small group of selfish and greedy individuals will exploit and economically oppress the majority. However, under the right circumstances, specifically within a socialist state, human beings can be improved or re-educated to function, think, and behave in an altruistic and communal manner. Therefore, human nature is inherently communal, generous, and inclined to share, but it has been led astray by capitalism and the pursuit of individual profit, resulting in competitiveness and selfishness. Consequently, it is necessary to restore human nature to its original state. Additionally, there is a widely held belief that human nature is flexible or at least adaptable, rather than fixed. It can and must be transformed for a socialist society to be realized. 

Socialists believe that humans are inherently altruistic, showing empathy and compassion towards others. They view all individuals as part of a common fraternity, akin to a family. According to this perspective, compassion is a fundamental aspect of human nature, which is shaped by external factors. Socialists emphasize the importance of nurture over nature, asserting that our society and environment play a significant role in shaping who we are. They argue that criminal behavior is not a result of inherent 'badness', but rather a consequence of social influences and upbringing. Overall, socialists maintain a positive outlook on human nature, believing in the potential for societal improvement and progress. Many socialists reject nationalist ideologies, advocating for a universal sense of humanity that transcends borders. Socialism is often associated with internationalism, promoting the idea that class consciousness extends beyond national boundaries and highlighting the importance of solidarity among all people.