what rights do you have?
inalienable rights derived from natural or god given law?
those rights given to you by your society or government?
or those rights you have the power to take?
What is the source of your rights?
I have every right that supports my life, natural only in the sense that soiciety cannot well deny what it needs itself for existence...It can deny immorality its power, but it cannot deny life to the people because the life of the infividual, and the life of the society are the same...People have every right...If they find some necessity to defend their rights as they see them to the death against those who would deny them, then I will not be a target, or an innocent by stander...Who am I to tell another what rights he needs for his life -which is his happiness, to sleep secure, and dream in peace that all of life is not in vain, to know the future with every certainty , and not to fear that tomorrow may find us regretting every happiness that did not secure our rights... With rights goes wealth, and happiness, security and health... All the goods as virtue that a man may know grow out of his power, that is his right in society....
---------- Post added 12-27-2009 at 02:14 PM ----------
That is really too bad, since these precepts are more honored in the breach than in the observance. And especially, most lately, in Washington D.C. . In fact, I would be happy to hear of a place where a government honors them.
It is true of every virtue that we know it more by its want than by its evidence, and why should rights as freedom means, be any different???Do you ken that the task before us is no mean feat...We cannot go a bag at a time into the better future, but must look at all, and leave all we do not need to be buried like everything else in the dust of time...If the word revolution as complete and final change we heard; what would it mean to you??? Is it something to dread, or would you look as Lot into the future with never a glance back???
If you want to be a man; help me to write a better constitution no better than it has to be to trash the old one... Then let the future trash that if so inclined... I am too old to give the dead meaning...I want my own meaning before death cools me...
---------- Post added 12-27-2009 at 02:22 PM ----------
Really? I find Kant incredibly convoluted and difficult to follow, sometimes even impenetrable. Paton's translation of The Groundwork is good, but it's hardly clear, though it's nowhere near his most difficult work.
For Kant, humans have an intrinsic value because of their rational faculties, they have the ability decide what to do for themselves, and we must treat that as an end in itself. Thus, we must never allow ourselves to subvert a persons autonomy by merely using them without appropriate respect for their own wishes and desires. In political philosophy this means we aren't allowed to coerce people into doing something against their will.
I agree, it's not exactly common sense, but the Kantian notion that humans are valuable, and that there are certain ways in which we are not allowed to treat people, is. It is at least intuitive, and the correct way of characterising rights (as constraints on action).
No different from others, Kant was looking for an ethical form...That is the work of philosophy as it has been, to cure the immorality common to societies as they fail, -with reason...People are not reasonable, and they are not moral by choice, reasoned or unreasoned... They know who they are, and moral is what they are as a result of who they are...It is in part instinct, to bond, subjected to constant conditioning to be good, or socaible...It is the highest morality to see others as you would see yourself, and it is the denial of individualism...It is not rational, and it never will be...Morality is anti rational...
---------- Post added 12-27-2009 at 02:37 PM ----------
The individual is inviolable? Why is this so? Kant (if read) is not exactly mysterious, but one cannot help but be impressed at how his ethical theory was constructed. Kant's ethical theory may not be mysterious but its not exactly common sense either.
Ethics is built upon a certain relationship between the individual and his community...So it can be considered in the abstract, as a form...What it cannot be considered to do is be rational, or as you say, according to: common sense...Marriage as a form seems all nice and rational too; but it would seem like the rational veneer over the exterior of irrationality to who ever has been married...Where is the marriage that follows the rules???Each is individual because it is made of the individuals...
Rights considered as form, or construct is bent toward the individual who need them, and experiience them...But they are really a dynamic between the individual and his community...The individual demands what he needs for himself from them, for his life, which is there life; And to gether the individual defends what no person can easily defend themselves, which is their rights, and their freedom... Rights are enjoyed individually, but it is society which defends them communally...There is a give and take to the process... The individual should seek every power, and the society should tell what powers it will accept and defend...When it becomes relationship becomes static, as every state seeks, then the people look to the state as the giver of rights, to plead their case for what they need...It is the other way around, that the people give to their communities, and to their governments and to all their social forms only the power necessary to do good for them... And no people can give more of rights than they possess...If people have the right to kill in defense, so do governments...If they cannot kill for any other reason, the government has no more right than they...
---------- Post added 12-27-2009 at 02:56 PM ----------
I agree. I think the Bill of Rights is a good example for the foundation of a decent society. Perhaps it could even be improved. Our fiat currency seems to be a weak spot. Our wealth is not safe, not protected from manipulation.
In any case, legal rights. If only we could get the majority to respect the rights of the minority. I wish more persons understood that the rights are necessary especially for the minority.
Right protect every body from every body...AS conceived now, with civil rights one thing, and property rights another; some people have unequal protection of the law, and as a result all wealth, which was once the common wealth is becoming private property which is associated with, and has been associated with the right of goverment since the Feudal Age...Law is like a coccoon holding all its former selves...We see only ourselves against this monolith with a hard and smooth exterior and cannot see that deep within it is nature with bloody teeth and hands defending all it has taken from the unwarry...
I would like to keep things the same, so they would never change, or be like Plato and change the window treatments so that natural morality would always suffer a social form incapable of adaptation, like the medieval church...That is what people do with law: They try to protect their spoils and they try to keep free of morality, which demands equality...Society might persist for a long time on the Ten Commandments if it would follow them, but law made to protect spoils also protects spoilers until the whole wealth of every place becomes the property of a few...We do not have a multitude of laws, but a plethora...We have law by the yard, and by the rod... No one can know it all... The law of the Muslims and the Qu'ran might be memorized by a few; but it takes nime people usually deeply divided to even tell us what our laws mean... Every community, village, and four corners has its laws, on top of federal and state, and every one is an infringment of free activity, usually more for worse than bad...There is a point reached by every social form when it supports itself on the labors of the people and belabors them with rules serving only the form, and not the life of the people...