Happy Sun’s Day
“People Do Not Have The Right to Take Away The Rights of Others” – The Book of Rabyd 1:6
Thoughts and Exposition:
The real key here to understanding rights that inalienable is that it means that everyone has them. Truly understand rights then requires that while we all may have the right to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and property; it does not mean that we can exercises those rights at the expense of someone else’s rights. You must respect the rights of others to truly understand what rights entail. If you don’t, you have an improper understanding of rights.
It is morally wrong to force another to give up their rights so that you can have yours. It morally bankrupt; in my opinion, to use any kind of force and power to exalt your rights over another. This is something that has to be remembered because as much as we say – “I have my rights”, we also need to say – “they have their rights” in the same breath. It is this respect of rights as a concept that is just as important as respect of my own rights. When we do this we are learning to see others as human beings. It is this issue that if implemented would solve a ton of problems. As much as I feel I have the right to stand on my rights, I must also allow others to stand on theirs.
This why I find the use of government today so repugnant. Much of it is one side or the others trying to take power to use on others. The Republicans try to seize power so they can use it against the Democrats and visa versa. No one is trying to take government so they can genuinely defend the rights of all. Libertarianism for me is simply a wonderful philosophy that seeks to actually see the rights of all protected. The goal of our politics then would be to stop the government from violating the rights of all individuals.
I have been using the issue of abortion to illustrate the problem when rights collide. The right to life movement say the right of the child to live is not being respected, the pro-choice folks say the right of the woman to privacy which is connected to her rights to liberty and the pursuit of happiness is being violated if she does not have the choice of an abortion. The problem is we simply cannot play a game of two against one to decided who is right. A single violated right by force is wrong. The argument really centers on whether or not the child/fetus is genuinely a human being and thus has rights. Pro-life folks say yes / pro-choice folks say no. This is not going to be resolved because the arguments on both sides have problems. I am not going to get into that because the arguments for both sides are legion as well. My point is if a single right is being violated on an individual then the action is wrong and should not be allowed.
The problem with abortion is asking a question of personhood and at that point you are getting far more into metaphysics and theology than philosophy. My personal position is to say I am pro-choice on one hand because I do not feel it is my right to force my viewpoint of when life begins on another, and it is a debatable point. But I am also pro-life on the other hand, because I would hope that we would recognize our ignorance on when life truly and genuinely begins, and thus choose to err on the side of life because of that ignorance.
My point in all this is the debate is not what our rights are for those that follow the Book of Rabyd. Those are clearly understood. The debate for me and for my family is to understand and know when rights are being brought into conflict either intentionally or unintentionally and coming up with solutions that both allow one to exercise their rights but not interfere with the rights of others. This is the challenge of those who follow the Book of Rabyd.
The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.