BEFORE YOU BEGIN: How do You Define a ‘Right?’

THIS IS THE THIRD OF A FOUR-PART SERIES

(you can find the first post here)

This post is primarily addressed to those readers who may be new to the Theory of Natural Law and Natural Rights as the Framers understood them.  This series is intended to start the reader off by asking them to give some careful and considered thought as to what they actually believe about several cornerstones of Natural Law Theory.  We ask that those readers who are new to Natural Law please take a few minutes to read through each of the four posts.  Feel free to post questions or answers ours.  We will do our best to answer your questions or direct you to someone who can.  If at any time you feel that you are being personally attacked on this board, please let the admin know about it.  Personal attacks are a violation of Natural Law and will not be tolerated.  However, we caution all of our readers: this does not apply to ideas.  Ideas can and will be challenged.  The important thing for all of us is to learn how to tell the difference between personal attack and an attack on an idea.  Hopefully, readers will learn this over time.  Now, with that said, shall we begin challenging you?  We’d like to start by asking you to answer a series of questions:

Now that you have thought about whether or not a ‘right‘ exists, from where it comes, whether it belongs to the individual or a group, and a little bit about its limits; let’s talk about what a ‘right‘ is.  I will start with a simple question:

How do you define ‘right?’  What is it?

Now, let’s ask another question:

Is there anything inherently included in a ‘right?’

For example:

Does a ‘right‘ to something also include a ‘right‘ to everything needed to exercise the first right? 

If so, are there limits to what can be included in a ‘right?’

Here’s another question for you:

Do ‘rights‘ have limits, or can they overlap the rights of another person or group?

For example:

Can a ‘right‘ include a demand on its source?

Can a ‘right‘ include a demand on another person or group?

A few more specific questions:

Can a ‘right‘ be transferred from one person or group to another person or group?

Do ‘rights’ have a hierarchy?  Do some rights come before others?

And one last question about rights:

Who decides the answers to all of these questions, and how?

That’s it: those are all the questions we wanted to ask in this post.  Whether or not you post a reply is entirely up to you.  Our only request is that:

If you decide to continue reading TRTC, please do so with an open mind.  By that we mean that you will come to our arguments with sincere desire to give them fair and honest consideration and, if any of our arguments make sense to you, that you be willing to change your mind about your own beliefs.  And if you have questions, you will engage in a civil and reasonable discussion.  This means we both get to answer questions and present support for our positions, and we both have to answer those questions and consider the other party’s evidence.  We can assure you, if you can provide us with a reasoned argument that is stronger than those we present, we will do the same.  In fact, we already have — many times.  Will you do the same?

Read the fourth post in this series.

 

Advertisements