Saturday, April 30, 2005

Individual Rights Defined

Both Worlds has an excellent post regarding the definition of "rights". He describes how all rights are individual rights and cannot be assigned to any group of people.

An excerpt:

But there is another aspect of rights which is often neglected, especially in our age of manufactured rights. Genuine rights require only the inaction of others, not the action of others. This seems trivial but is actually crucial. Without this aspect, the whole system of rights becomes unworkable.

For example, a right to freedom of speech requires only that others don’t hinder you from speaking, it doesn’t require they give you a forum. Freedom of religion means others shouldn’t hinder you from worshiping the way you like, it doesn’t mean they must build you a church. A right to bears arms means you can own a gun, it doesn’t mean someone is obligated to buy you one.

This is perhaps the best description of the rights, as intended by our founders, as I have ever seen. If you read nothing else today, Read This!

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