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LKL
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07 Nov 2010, 3:20 am

This came up in another thread, and I'd like to see other people's ideas on it. I tend to think that human rights come from humans: we have only the rights that we give each other, and there is no overweening authority or source that gives them to us. I have seen others, even atheists, claim that human rights are natural and intrinsic regardless of the social paradigm. Thoughts?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-RU_6t6Anro[/youtube]



Sand
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07 Nov 2010, 4:07 am

Since social order amongst herd animals requires particular common behaviors for the community to operate properly it is likely that so-called rights preceded humanity but since there are varied types of social order that function for the benefit of the group these internal regulations have a range of differences. Humanity at different times and within differing conditions has established different types of social orders. Each of these orders requires different obligations and confers different privileges upon its members. There may be a common set of these regulations that are basic to all these social orders but beyond the common set there are certainly wide differences..



Master_Pedant
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07 Nov 2010, 4:25 am

This is a pretty funny question and reveals quite a few paradoxes in many US ideologies.

On the one hand, constitutionalists desire Justices to "follow the constitution" and not give use their own interpretations or beliefs when ruling on cases. This requires a positive, legalistic approach. On the other hand, many "pop constitutionalists" presume that the rights in the Constitution assume a metaphysics where the given rights are part of some over-arching divine order of things, in which case Kagan should judge on the basis of what she thinks such an order is. But that requires judging on the basis of her OWN OPINIONS rather than just following the letter or even spirit of the law - and this is heresay to the strict constructionism or orginalism of her interrogator and the conservative movement in America.

In some respects, I think that question was a catch 22 - if she says "yes, I do believe in natural rights indepedent of the constitution" that would ensure she'd rule in a manner that's not strictly constructionist. On the other hand, if she said "I don't believe in any rights other than those that the constitution's writing lawed into existence" she'd be denying the meta-ethical basis for the constitution (discredited Natural Rights theory).

As for where "rights" come from, to borrow a phrase from Dennett I think they're "free-floating rationales" that various societies' discover can make them flourish.


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skafather84
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07 Nov 2010, 4:40 am

Gun rights are very important.

Beyond that, it's way too complicated and gets too much into the value of individual life versus the responsibility of that life in terms of owning a gun. Should someone be able to kill someone for trespassing or should they only be able to inflict non-lethal wounds or what? Do liberal gun laws de-value life?


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thedaywalker
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07 Nov 2010, 8:00 am

in Holland we don't have gun rights and everything is fine here. i think likes starving to death are faiths you wouldn't wish on anyone and thus the right to not starve is created. same for other fundamental rights.



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07 Nov 2010, 9:32 am

Most views on where rights come from can be broken down into two schools

1st School

Intrinsic

Those who value Natural Law and the Social Contract would argue that all people are essentially the same as everyone one else, since you have values to your self then this should be extended to all, and therefor all are worth of human rights
(This view is argued mostly by secularists and can be found in the French declaration of the Rights of Man and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

Endowed.

People who argue that rights are endowed by their creators. This essentially Christian view is based on the belief that all are created for with the love of God.
(This view is partly displayed in the U.S. Declaration of Independence, though the intrinsic view is also made there too)


2nd School

Statist

The view holds to the idea that the individual receives rights from the state. The Chinese and Russian essentially hold this view. (this view is somewhat visible in the UN declaration as well; within the right to work and social security sections that were insisted on by the Soviet Union during its drafting.

Constitutionalists

Have the view that rights come from the constitution and that all rights to be considered in a court should be found within the laws of the land.


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ruveyn
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07 Nov 2010, 9:56 am

The point of the spear, the edge of the sword, the barrel of the gun.

ruveyn



Sand
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07 Nov 2010, 10:14 am

ruveyn wrote:
The point of the spear, the edge of the sword, the barrel of the gun.

ruveyn


Nowadays, the size of the wallet.



ruveyn
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07 Nov 2010, 10:23 am

Sand wrote:
ruveyn wrote:
The point of the spear, the edge of the sword, the barrel of the gun.

ruveyn


Nowadays, the size of the wallet.


Money is less bloody than weapons although not less harmful.

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leejosepho
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07 Nov 2010, 10:42 am

LKL wrote:
I tend to think ... there is no overweening authority or source that gives them to us.

Sand wrote:
... it is likely that so-called rights preceded humanity ...

Order had to come from (someone) somewhere.


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Sand
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07 Nov 2010, 11:23 am

leejosepho wrote:
LKL wrote:
I tend to think ... there is no overweening authority or source that gives them to us.

Sand wrote:
... it is likely that so-called rights preceded humanity ...

Order had to come from (someone) somewhere.[/quote

Sure. Every time a thrown ball makes a perfect parabola there is a little demon at the controls.



ruveyn
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07 Nov 2010, 11:56 am

Sand wrote:
leejosepho wrote:
LKL wrote:
I tend to think ... there is no overweening authority or source that gives them to us.

Sand wrote:
... it is likely that so-called rights preceded humanity ...

Order had to come from (someone) somewhere.[/quote

Sure. Every time a thrown ball makes a perfect parabola there is a little demon at the controls.


That is a manifestation of nature which we confuse for control and design. Natural physical laws do not cause anything. They happen to be verifiable descriptions of what does happen during experiments.

ruveyn



Inuyasha
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10 Nov 2010, 1:03 am

thedaywalker wrote:
in Holland we don't have gun rights and everything is fine here. i think likes starving to death are faiths you wouldn't wish on anyone and thus the right to not starve is created. same for other fundamental rights.


You didn't have a revolutionary war. The 2nd amendment is the Keystone Amendment which protects all the others.



Sand
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10 Nov 2010, 2:33 am

Inuyasha wrote:
thedaywalker wrote:
in Holland we don't have gun rights and everything is fine here. i think likes starving to death are faiths you wouldn't wish on anyone and thus the right to not starve is created. same for other fundamental rights.


You didn't have a revolutionary war. The 2nd amendment is the Keystone Amendment which protects all the others.


I really am grateful for all those gun carrying Americans who see to it that the federal government doesn't invade my privacy with CIA wiretapping and prevents terrorists from blowing up buildings and stops all the financial corruption on Wall Street and sees to it that the government doesn't lie to get the country involved in useless wars. Thank goodness all these macho guys are preserving American freedom and democracy. Without the guns the unemployment rate would be frightening and people would be losing their houses to foreclosing all over the place.



ruveyn
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10 Nov 2010, 3:54 am

Inuyasha wrote:
thedaywalker wrote:
in Holland we don't have gun rights and everything is fine here. i think likes starving to death are faiths you wouldn't wish on anyone and thus the right to not starve is created. same for other fundamental rights.


You didn't have a revolutionary war. The 2nd amendment is the Keystone Amendment which protects all the others.


Do not denigrate freedom of speech/expression which is at the root freedom to think as one will. Without that freedom there would be little for arms to defend. Two cheers for the First Amendment (which also guarantees freedom from religion).

ruveyn