There is constant debate over what constitutes “rights.” My perspective on how to tell Rights from rights.
If you listen to the debate over “the right to…” you will hear some talk about “big R rights” and “little r rights.” This is my interpretation on how to tell the Rights from the rights.
Let’s start off by looking at the dictionary definition of a Right:
…political theory that maintains that an individual enters into society with certain basic rights and that no government can deny these rights. The modern idea of natural rights grew out of the ancient and medieval doctrines of natural law, i.e., the belief that people, as creatures of nature and God, should live their lives and organize their society on the basis of rules and precepts laid down by nature or God…
So, if you believe in a Supreme Being, you can say your Rights come from God. “God” is a generic term, covering Names like Yahweh, Allah, or any other name used by people to describe Him or Her. If you do not believe in a Supreme Being, just put it down to “nature” or “the law of the jungle.”
The first Right is always the Right to defend yourself so that you may continue your existence on this world. You also have the Right to defend those under your protection (mate, children and others) and your property. To not defend your family means no heritage for you.There is no limit on this but the absurd. By this Right you are to defend yourself by any means necessary. The weapon used is not important, the fact that you be able to is the important point. If you are prohibited from defending yourself, those under your protection and your property, then no other rights (R or r) matter because you will not be around to enjoy them.
Your property (detailed just below) is also included in this because your property (land, tools, etc.) enables you to generate food, protection from the elements and everything else needed to secure the safety and continued existence of you and family.
The second Right is the Right to own property. This means you have total control over what happens to whatever you claim to be your property. How, when and where it is used, and how you dispose of it. The root of this Right extends to your person. If you cannot control yourself (i.e., you are forced against your will to labor for someone else) then you cannot control other property because you don’t “own yourself.”
The third Right is the ability to say what you want, commonly known as the Freedom of Speech. The ability to say what you want to say must never be restricted. Even if what you are saying isn’t true.
As with all things there are some caveats to this. While the concept is absolute, in reality just because you can say something does not excuse you from possible consequences of saying it. If you were to walk around town yelling, “Bill Smith cheats on his wife!” then Bill Smith should deliver to you a severe beat-down. If what you said isn’t true, you deserve said beat down because you are damaging his reputation with a lie. If it is true, then you still might receive a beat down from him because in the end it’s none of your business. If he’s raping your wife, I can see a beat down coming from you to him in the near future (see the first Right above). If your wife is a willing participant in the interaction, then your issue is with your wife, not Bill.
If you lose your job or are expelled from a group because of what you say, right or wrong, that is not a restriction of your Freedom of Speech. Violating work rules (“don’t talk about pending Company contracts on social media”) or rules of the group don’t fall under this Right because you voluntarily decided to work for someone else and that was one of the conditions for working there. Same with a social group. You voluntarily joined the group and the group can revoke your membership at any time. You can also quit your job or leave the group before you say what you want to say.
All of your other Rights (Right to assembly, Right to be secure in your papers and effects, etc.) stems from one or more of the above three.
Governments should not and must not have the power to lay claim on you, your property or anything else without your consent or fair compensation.
The Free dictionary defines “rights” as:
…plural of right, which is the collection of entitlements which a person may have and which are protected by the government and the courts, or under an agreement (contract).
“Entitlements”? That’s an interesting word choice to use. Let’s take a look at that word.
a right to benefits specified especially by law or contract
a government program providing benefits to members of a specified group; also : funds supporting or distributed by such a program
These kind of rights can be found in FDR’s “second Bill of Rights” or almost any of the Leftist demands about “human rights.”
These include: the right to a job with a living wage, a right to healthcare, a right to a place to live and the right to education.
There is one common theme with all these “rights,” which is the government must force one person (employer, physician, tradesman, etc.) be it through laws, regulations or nationalization of an industry to provide their service at a price set by government, not market prices, and to provide that service to a third person, you.
The goods and services provided by the government and paid for by your tax dollars are 99% of the time of a lower quality and limited quantity than what you could get on the open market. Please tell me how public housing compares favorably to privately owned housing, that a Food Stamps allotment could realistically purchase even the bulk of the food for a person or family, that the healthcare provided by government plans compares to private insurance. It doesn’t, not by a long shot. All these programs do is promote dependency on those programs, not foster the conditions under which those on this assistance can easily get off and stay off the programs. The worst part of it all, for everything the Government giveth, the Government can also taketh away.
In conclusion, Rights come from God/Universe/Nature and are universal to all people at all times, while rights come from man/government. The thing of it is, man and by extension government, invariably takes both kinds of these R/rights away. When you look at the totality of human history, 99 44/100% of that history has been the oppression and denial of our Rights. From the feudal system of medieval Europe, the caste systems of the Far East, the oppressive Socialist regimes of the 20th and 21st Centuries and the brutal Theocratic regimes we see in the Middle East today, most of the common people have suffered under the control of a few.
Even the "free countries" have less freedom than you think. In France, it is extremely hard for a business to terminate an employee to the point the business makes triple sure the person will work out and they can use that person at a profit for a long time before hiring them. In Germany, the government states what the hours a business can be open.
Need I go on?