Human Rights

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Danoff

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What rights do human beings have and why?




Guidelines:
1) Try to prevent your list of rights from being inherently conflicting. Example: "I think human beings should have the right to kill people, but also have the right not to be killed"
2) The US bill of rights might help get you started
3) Be sure not to forget the "why" portion of this - which is what makes this question difficult.
4) Be sure to examine the impact of your reasoning on whether animals also have rights.
 

Swift

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Let's see. Since I'm two steps shy of being a libertarian(literally) I'll throw these out here. I'll add more if I can think of them. But these are the basics.

  1. First and foremost, nobody has a greater right to life then ANY other individual person.
  2. You have the right to free speech
    *But NOT the right to NOT be offended
  3. You have the right to not having your body harmed by others
    *But forfeit this right when you harm someone else.
  4. You have the right to religious expression.
    *Unless that expression is directly hindering, altering or oppressing someone's current belief set.

Why, well the first one is obvious. But it doesn't matter who you are and what you have. God has no respect of persons.

1Peter 1:17 And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning [here] in fear:

And neither do I. We are all born the same and when we are dead it's the same. So how can we claim when we're alive we are "greater" then someone else?

[*]You have the right to free speech
*But NOT the right to NOT be offended

I can't stand the climate of a lot of today's people and media. People protest against things that they think hinder free speech and then turn around and get mad at the people exercising free speech because they find it offensive. You can't have it both ways. People say things on the board here that I find offensive but I don't go ban them for it. It's a free speech society and as such, you have to be prepared for the occasional offensive comment.

[*]You have the right to not having your body harmed by others
*But forfeit this right when you harm someone else.

-This falls in line with the first one. Basically, you have the right to keep your body in the shape that you want it to be in unless someone else alters it against your will. While I agree with this general concept, when it comes to drugs, tobacco, and alcohol I disagree. But that's a political stance not philosophical.

[*]You have the right to religious expression.
*Unless that expression is directly hindering, altering or oppressing someone's current belief set.

-In other words, you can say all you want, pray all you want and practice all you want as long as it isn't stopping someone else from practicing their religion. Mentioning God or Jesus at a graduation ceremony is NOT going to void the degrees/diplomas. However, burning incense in a public place could easily and quickly cause serious safety hazards.

OK, that's my list for now. Feel free to pick it apart there Dan. :cool:
 

Danoff

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Thanks Swift,

Let me see if I've got this right.

1) The right to life
2) Free Speech
3) Freedom of Religion

The first comes from a basic lack of superiority of one person over another. The second comes from the fact that no speech would exist if anyone offended could prevent it - which has to be the case since no person is superior to any other. I didn't completely follow the justification for the last one - but it actually doesn't even have to be listed because it follows if you claim something to the effect of "people can do whatever they want as long as it doesn't violate someone's rights".

You also mentioned that rights are invalidated if you violate someone else's - good call. And good list. 👍

What about property?
 
We should revert to a Thunderdome society. Only one rule: No rules.

I'm being serious. No more bank accounts, trust funds, lotteries, mansions, wealth, you get the idea.

If this were the case, everyone would buy a gun and we'd start living properly, since being cruel to someone could result in your death. While I haven't ironed out the details of a world like this, anything is better than the class-based monarchy the civilized world - in particular the US - has become.
 

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No more bank accounts [...] wealth, you get the idea.

If this were the case, everyone would buy a gun

With what? :D
 

Keef

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Or just their virginity. That's worth a few hundred bucks, and that's why prostitution is the world's oldest profession. Would we have laws, Anderton, because prostitution in illegal.:D
 

Danoff

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We should revert to a Thunderdome society. Only one rule: No rules.

I'm being serious. No more bank accounts, trust funds, lotteries, mansions, wealth, you get the idea.

If this were the case, everyone would buy a gun and we'd start living properly, since being cruel to someone could result in your death. While I haven't ironed out the details of a world like this, anything is better than the class-based monarchy the civilized world - in particular the US - has become.

So you'd prefer a world where justice does not exist - where right and wrong are determined by the guy with the biggest gun. You don't think human beings have rights. Anarchy - like you advocate here - typically leads dictatorship over time.

Anyone besides swift think that human beings have rights in society?
 

Keef

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I agree completely with the Swiftinator, but I don't understand this line:
You have the right to religious expression.
*Unless that expression is directly hindering, altering or oppressing someone's current belief set.
I interpret this as saying that you can exercice your religion as long as it doesn't mess with anyone else's religion. If you say "Islam sucks" you are opressing someon else's beliefs, and according to the free speach right this is OK. These two rights conflict, and the Islamic person couldn't do anything because they, or anybody, have no right to not be offended. So if they didn't like your statement, oh well.
I would word it "Unless that expression is directly hindering, altering, or opressing someon else's rights." That would mean that if your religion puts emphasis on a certain group to let them live and others die for some reason, you can't exercise that religion, your religion can't force people to give up the right of free speech, and it cannot force you to endure mental or physical anguish, because you don't have to, and it can't prevent others from exercising their own religion, as long as it follows all these rights as well.
I'm sure there are many others, and that's why I stand behind the Constitution of the United States of America. I realize a few people have had problems with it and took it up with the government, but it hasn't made an ass out of me yet, so I'll stick with it. It don't profund me none, 'long as I get my rent paid next Friday.Some of the world's smartest social minds worked on that Constitution and didn't get it quite right, they are still working on it, and they probably will always be working on it. Americans evolved an especially open mind, though, and constantly question the meaning of the Bill of Rights, which is mainly why it always gets different interpretations.
That'd be cool if people could just follow the rules and not complain about. Oh, and throw Swift's in thing about having to take the criticism like a man. That'll teach people to not go to court when someone doesn't like their hair color that particular day.
 

Zrow

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Right to life
Freedom of speech
Freedom of religion
Right to your body
Freedom of action that isn't harming others (directly)

How about... right of personal responsibilty?

Perhaps the question is easier as "What rights shouldn't we have?", as it seems to me the rights we should have far outweigh the ones we shouldn't.
 

Keef

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A right for personal responsibility isn't needed. You can be responsible for your on actions if you want to. That's already true, and if it were a right it would be no different than it is now. Now, if it were a law that said you had to be responsible for your own actions, that's a different story.
I forgot something in my previous post. I think a person should have a right to die just as they have the right to live. I don't know if the right to life is self-explanatory, but I think you should be able to kill yourself if you feel like it. Of course, you couldn't really get punished for that anyway.
 
Famine
With what? :D

I was thinking more along the lines of some event that would collapse society, but would also be predictable...oh, nevermind. I changed my mind. Yeah, those human right things are great. Run with that.
 

Zrow

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A right for personal responsibility isn't needed. You can be responsible for your on actions if you want to. That's already true, and if it were a right it would be no different than it is now.


I'm talking along the lines of responsible for yourself. The responsibility to take care of yourself and your body. As in, it not being the government's job to keep you completely safe and comfortable.
 
Zrow
How about... right of personal responsibilty?

The problem is that this statement is an oxymoron. The words right and reposnability, as used, are opposites. It should be, as strange as it sounds the responsability of personal responsability.

Has anyone ever seen or read the magazine COLORS ? It examines similar sentiments and opinions from virtually every kind of social class or society in the world. The Fall 2005 issue investigates the Freedom of Speech on a global level, shown through national rankings of journalism and media freedom per country. It is probably the single most important piece of literature that anyone has never or ever made me read.

keef
Or just their virginity. That's worth a few hundred bucks, and that's why prostitution is the world's oldest profession. Would we have laws, Anderton, because prostitution in illegal.

As Carlin wisely said: "Selling is legal, ****ing is legal, so why isn't selling ****ing legal?"
 

Zrow

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The problem is that this statement is an oxymoron. The words right and reposnability, as used, are opposites. It should be, as strange as it sounds the responsability of personal responsability.

The freedom to take responsibility for ourselves, perhaps?
 
But that inturn implies that one can chose to not be responsible for what they did, whereas they should be responsible to be responsible, and not have a choice that freedom gives you.

Or are you trying to say that people should have the right to freedom, and not be controlled and be responsible for themselves?
 

Zrow

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I'm talking about the government not stepping in to keep you totally safe and comfortable.
 
Another quote by another smart man:

"I need someone to protect me from all the measures they take in order to protect me."
-Banksy

But your version makes more sense. I was thinking that you should be required to be held responsible for your actions, which would be an obligation and not a freedom.
 

Dave A

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Freedom of action that isn't harming others (directly)
Any just why should you have freeedom of action to harm others indirectly?
 

Swift

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I agree completely with the Swiftinator, but I don't understand this line:

I interpret this as saying that you can exercice your religion as long as it doesn't mess with anyone else's religion. If you say "Islam sucks" you are opressing someon else's beliefs, and according to the free speach right this is OK. These two rights conflict, and the Islamic person couldn't do anything because they, or anybody, have no right to not be offended. So if they didn't like your statement, oh well.
I would word it "Unless that expression is directly hindering, altering, or opressing someon else's rights." That would mean that if your religion puts emphasis on a certain group to let them live and others die for some reason, you can't exercise that religion, your religion can't force people to give up the right of free speech, and it cannot force you to endure mental or physical anguish, because you don't have to, and it can't prevent others from exercising their own religion, as long as it follows all these rights as well.
I'm sure there are many others, and that's why I stand behind the Constitution of the United States of America. I realize a few people have had problems with it and took it up with the government, but it hasn't made an ass out of me yet, so I'll stick with it. It don't profund me none, 'long as I get my rent paid next Friday.Some of the world's smartest social minds worked on that Constitution and didn't get it quite right, they are still working on it, and they probably will always be working on it. Americans evolved an especially open mind, though, and constantly question the meaning of the Bill of Rights, which is mainly why it always gets different interpretations.
That'd be cool if people could just follow the rules and not complain about. Oh, and throw Swift's in thing about having to take the criticism like a man. That'll teach people to not go to court when someone doesn't like their hair color that particular day.

Actually, if I go around saying, "Islam sucks" or "Christ was a myth!" that's not oppressing. That's offensive. If I am an authority figure and I say, "You can't practice your muslim beliefs because I don't like it" That's oppressive. Big difference. People say that this or that religion sucks all the time. Atheists make me laugh when they start cursing God(hence admiting his name is high and lifted up).

So, it doesn't conflict.

As far as property. Well, if you legally own your property, nobody has the right to take it from you for any reason. The only entity that could would be the gov't to either pay for taxes or for LEGITIMATE emminent domain. That topic has been well covered in the emminent domain thread in this forum.

BTW, thanks for the approval of the list Dan. :)
 

Danoff

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As far as property. Well, if you legally own your property, nobody has the right to take it from you for any reason.

Ah, but you forgot number 3 on the guidelines - why do you have property rights?
 

Danoff

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You do know that I would not shift my thinking because the majority says that is how it should be. If that were the case I would be one of those "The law says this, end of story" kind of people. Instead I disagree with the law and that is why we are even having this discussion. If I went along with a mob mentality I would have no place in the opinions forum.

That's good to hear. You think rights are fundamentally objective. That human rights exist regardless of how the mob votes or who is making the law. That's good to hear - but you still don't have a reason why you think that other than...

Every fiber of my body tells me that those things are what is right and moral and the way things should be. Outside of that, I don't know.

That's a problem - because you can't prove that to someone who doesn't agree with you. If you think something is a "god given" right, but your feelings are all you have to go on, you're not going to be able to convince anyone that it's the objective truth.

Swift has a really good start on this subject. He's explaind why people have a right to their lives without relying on anything subjective. I've started probing him to do the same with property rights even though I haven't really thought about that myself.

Without that though I have to rely on my moral fiber and say it is because humans as an advanced species have self-realization, complex communication, and the ability to feel guilt. That guilt (along with other aspects of humanity) is the natural trigger that evolution has granted us to be able to live together in a peaceful manner and form large societies. We have developed this natural reaction to the things we have labelled moral and immoral and thus inalienable rights are there through nature. We have naturally developed a sense of inalienable rights because without them it would, as you pointed out, be anarchy.

I agree that the concept of rights defeats anarchy and requires a basic government structure to enforce. I disagree that guilt somehow gives us our rights, because guilt could then be used to eliminate our rights.

The businessman who works hard every day and beats his competitor might feel guilty about putting his competition out of business. Does that guilt eliminate his rights to his productivity? Do we even have rights to our productivity?
 

Danoff

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Swift, a quick question for you about your list of rights. Are all animals created equal to man? Does that mean an animal has a right to life? (I know you're going to want to use the soul here, and that's a fine reason if you're religious - but see if you can come up with another reason to distinguish them)
 

Zrow

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Any just why should you have freeedom of action to harm others indirectly?

"Indirect" harm is subjective. When I say indirect, I'm referring to actions that may potentially lead to harm against someone. For instance, the production and sale of alcohol may lead to a drunk-driving accident in the future, but it's not harming anyone directly. Cigarettes would be another example.
 

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Swift has a really good start on this subject. He's explaind why people have a right to their lives without relying on anything subjective. I've started probing him to do the same with property rights even though I haven't really thought about that myself.
I think the problem with property rights is that it is a legal right granted by a capitalist system and not inalienable among all societies. In that system you have property rights because you worked to contribute to society in some way and have thus earned the right to earn property.


But when you consider non-capitalsit societies and propety rights are not a consideration. I'm not just referring to communism taking property either, because that is a granted property right that is being taken away. American natives did not even have a concept of property, Europeans fences were a new thing to them. Food was to be eaten by everyone and a teepee was shelter, not owned by anyone but just a part of the tribe. No one owned anything for the tribal leaders to take. They discovered the idea of property when Europeans began claiming stake to things that they had always just saw as being there.

Yet these tribal peoples understood the right to live and that it was wrong to assume you could take someone else's life because you are not any better than they are.


However as I see it a person has property rights because they have used their own talents and abilitiies to create/discover that property or to earn the ability to purchase that property. If you take that property without compensation you have negated the work of the owner. By doing so you have lowered the value of their talents and abilities. [RANT]Taxes -> Welfare[/RANT]
 

Swift

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Swift, a quick question for you about your list of rights. Are all animals created equal to man? Does that mean an animal has a right to life? (I know you're going to want to use the soul here, and that's a fine reason if you're religious - but see if you can come up with another reason to distinguish them)

Animals are NOT equal to man even if you believe in evolution. The strongest and smartest survive. That puts humans above animals from a scientific and spiritual point of view.
 

Danoff

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Animals are NOT equal to man even if you believe in evolution. The strongest and smartest survive. That puts humans above animals from a scientific and spiritual point of view.

Sure, there are scientific differences - but why do those necessarily translate into rights? If aliens landed here and were far more evolved than we are would they have more rights than us?
 

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"Indirect" harm is subjective. When I say indirect, I'm referring to actions that may potentially lead to harm against someone. For instance, the production and sale of alcohol may lead to a drunk-driving accident in the future, but it's not harming anyone directly. Cigarettes would be another example.
Fair enough, it can be quite a complex one this since different methods of indirect harm could and would be viewed in very different ways.
 

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Sure, there are scientific differences - but why do those necessarily translate into rights? If aliens landed here and were far more evolved than we are would they have more rights than us?
Show me an animal that understands rights and when they aree being infringed upon, and not just reacting instinctively, and I will show you an animal with rights.
 

Danoff

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Show me an animal that understands rights and when they aree being infringed upon, and not just reacting instinctively, and I will show you an animal with rights.

What about people that aren't able to comprehend the concept of rights. People like Terri Schavio or perhaps people who have down syndrome (or some other problem) - or Karl Marx.