View Poll Results: Do You Believe in Natural Rights?

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  • Yes

    36 41.38%
  • No

    51 58.62%
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Thread: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

  1. #31
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlbqOwl View Post
    No. Man just identified and gave a name to natural rights. Like I said.
    That never happened. Rights are immaterial. Nature is material. Rights were invented, not discovered.

  2. #32
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goshin View Post
    Folks, we're not talking about how the strong can abuse the weak.


    This is known, just as it is known that the violent can murder the pacifistic, and the sneaky can steal from the careless. That doesn't make these things right, nor does simple might make right.


    Natural rights is about what rights human beings ought to have and which ought to be respected by all because our very nature, needs and drives make them important.


    The right to life: Humans, like all other living things, strive to continue to exist. Since that's something virtually all of us want and need, it is something we should respect for others so they will return that respect to us. A human life should not be taken without very compelling reason.

    As all living things defend themselves as best they are able from attack, so do humans... thus the right to self-defense against unjust attack ought to be considered a natural right, as is the common means to that defense.


    No sane person wants their body violated by unwanted forceful sexual acts perpetrated on their person, so again this should be respected as a natural right.


    The right to property can get a bit more complex and nuanced, but it is not too much of a stretch to say that where a person has plowed and planted, they should have a right to reap and keep the produce of their labor. The details can be hashed out, but the general principle is there even in primitive cultures... if I made the bow, it is my bow unless I give or trade it to another.


    Some people try to make out that it isn't a "natural right" if it can be taken away. BS. Natural rights are not scientific laws, but rather a recognition that the very nature of humanity implies that certain rights of each person ought to be respected and not infringed upon... particularly the Big Three, Life Liberty and Pursuit of happiness, from which the others derive.
    I don't disagree with anything you said in that post, but will add that natural rights as you (and many others) defined them are merely an ideal or goal, not a reality.

  3. #33
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sherman123 View Post
    Everything else exists only at the sufferance of your own strength or the kindness of others. It is part of what makes civilization so essential and so valuable, because by creating a society we attempt to lift ourselves out of that war of all against all. This allows for freedom of speech, property rights, press freedoms, freedom of worship, etc. Absent organized society these 'rights' would be purely theoretical.
    This is where we need to be careful with language. The phrase "has a right" can be taken to mean different things at different times. For example, someone might say that prior to emancipation blacks didn't "have the right" to personal autonomy. Or that women prior to women's suffrage didn't "have the right" to vote. Whereas someone else might say that blacks have always "had the right" to personal autonomy or women the right to vote. These people aren't (necessarily) disagreeing. They're not making contradictory statements, they're using the same words ('have a right') to make entirely different statements. The former is pointing out that at one point in history blacks were enslaved. And that women were prevented by from voting. Whereas the latter is saying that blacks shouldn't have been enslaved. That women shouldn't have been prevented from voting.

  4. #34
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sherman123 View Post
    But if a right depends upon either your own strength or the sufferance of others in what sense can it be called a right? Moral ideals perhaps, but a right? I just don't see that.
    But that's all that is meant by a 'right'. When someone says that "person A has a right to X", what they're saying is "person A shouldn't be prevented by others from X".

  5. #35
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hard Truth View Post
    I don't disagree with anything you said in that post, but will add that natural rights as you (and many others) defined them are merely an ideal or goal, not a reality.


    Perhaps. Yet without ideals or goals, we are nothing more than savages are we not?

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    "I used to roll the dice; see the fear in my enemies' eyes... listen as the crowd would sing, 'now the old king is dead, Long Live the King.'.."

  6. #36
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goshin View Post
    Perhaps. Yet without ideals or goals, we are nothing more than savages are we not?
    Yep! That's why we're constantly fighting to retain them, there's always somebody trying to deny your rights, and often it works. You can be separated from your "rights". The god given thing is pie in the sky.
    Killing one person is murder, killing 100,000 is foreign policy

  7. #37
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by the_recruit View Post
    This is where we need to be careful with language. The phrase "has a right" can be taken to mean different things at different times. For example, someone might say that prior to emancipation blacks didn't "have the right" to personal autonomy. Or that women prior to women's suffrage didn't "have the right" to vote. Whereas someone else might say that blacks have always "had the right" to personal autonomy or women the right to vote. These people aren't (necessarily) disagreeing. They're not making contradictory statements, they're using the same words ('have a right') to make entirely different statements. The former is pointing out that at one point in history blacks were enslaved. And that women were prevented by from voting. Whereas the latter is saying that blacks shouldn't have been enslaved. That women shouldn't have been prevented from voting.
    I appreciate the nuance.

  8. #38
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    No. Rights do not exist in nature. They are a social concept that people secure for themselves and their community. And if you disagree, I challenge anyone to offer a method to determine what is or is not a natural right.

    Quote Originally Posted by Unrepresented View Post
    Slaves are slaves because the collective is more powerful than the individual. Your ownership is constantly up for auction.
    I would disagree. Slaves are slaves because the collective chooses to embrace slavery. A powerful collective can protect people from enslavement just as well as it can force people into it. And a powerful individual can enslave people just as well as a powerful collective. Serfdom and basically every form of government outside of democratic ones are basically about powerful individuals enslaving weaker collectives.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlbqOwl View Post
    Is it? Did man think up the ability to breathe? To think? To hope? To aspire? To defend oneself and/or survive? To do what makes us happy or grateful or satisfied? Or are we born with such traits/ability as human beings without anybody willing that it be so?
    No, we thought up taking those away from people. Rights is when we collectively agree not to do that.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlbqOwl View Post
    Gravity, mathematics, chemistry, bacteria, the elements all existed long before humankind became aware of them, how they worked, what they were useful for, or that they even existed. No government or person willed them into existence or created them. All government or people did was learn what they are, recognize them, give a name to identify them, and learn the value of them.

    It is the same with natural rights. The fact that it took most of the many millennia of civilization before humankind recognized and appreciated and gave a name to natural rights does not mean that they did not always exist. Humankind has always needed food, clothing, shelter and some form of self defense to survive. Humankind has always had a curiosity about the unknown, a desire for love, comfort, pleasure, happiness, and self satisfaction. Nobody had to grant anybody that. It has always existed.
    Rights are only about how human beings interact with each other. And not about curiosity or desires. That has nothing to do with rights at all. You're talking about natural traits, not about rights. Rights are whether or not people let each other do what they want. Rights do not come from nature. They come from people.
    Liberté. Égalité. Fraternité.

  9. #39
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Glen Contrarian View Post
    And your entire post is absolutely correct. But note the use of the word "correct" - I used it because if it weren't for entitlements and certain legal obligations to help others, life would suck indeed.

    For instance, there's the Law of the Sea: if you know of someone in distress, if you are able to do so without placing yourself and your crew in real danger, you are legally required to go save them.

    So it is with police and doctors and so many professions - if one sees a problem, one must do something about it. If our society was such that there was no legal, moral, or social obligation to respond and help, again, life would suck indeed. And what most conservatives don't seem to get is that things like welfare, Medicaid, and so on are in reality an extension of the aforementioned obligations to help those in need or distress. To whom much is given, much is expected - that is and has for many generations described what we do.

    But if someone doesn't want to live where there's any such legal, moral, or social obligation to help, I encourage them to all go and found their own little nation and see how that works out....
    But I was not arguing the laws or ethics governing entitlements. I was arguing the difference between unalienable/natural rights and entitlements.
    "I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it." --Benjamin Franklin 1776

  10. #40
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    Re: Do You Believe In Natural Rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paschendale View Post
    No. Rights do not exist in nature. They are a social concept that people secure for themselves and their community. And if you disagree, I challenge anyone to offer a method to determine what is or is not a natural right.



    I would disagree. Slaves are slaves because the collective chooses to embrace slavery. A powerful collective can protect people from enslavement just as well as it can force people into it. And a powerful individual can enslave people just as well as a powerful collective. Serfdom and basically every form of government outside of democratic ones are basically about powerful individuals enslaving weaker collectives.



    No, we thought up taking those away from people. Rights is when we collectively agree not to do that.



    Rights are only about how human beings interact with each other. And not about curiosity or desires. That has nothing to do with rights at all. You're talking about natural traits, not about rights. Rights are whether or not people let each other do what they want. Rights do not come from nature. They come from people.
    We will just have to agree to disagree I guess. Because I agree with the Founders 100% when it come to the concept of natural rights.
    "I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it." --Benjamin Franklin 1776

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