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LWW
12-19-2009, 10:12 AM
Intelligent discussion encouraged.

<u>What Is a Right?</u>

by Andrew P. Napolitano

In the continually harsh public discourse over the Presidentís proposals for federally-managed healthcare, the Big Government progressives in both the Democratic and the Republican parties have been trying to trick us. These folks, who really want the government to care for us from cradle to grave, have been promoting the idea that health care is a right. In promoting that false premise, they have succeeded in moving the debate from WHETHER the feds should micro-manage health care to HOW the feds should micro-manage health care. This is a false premise, and we should reject it. Health care is not a right; it is a good, like food, like shelter, and like clothing.

What is a right? A right is a gift from God that extends from our humanity. Thinkers from St. Thomas Aquinas, to Thomas Jefferson, to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., to Pope John Paul II have all argued that our rights are a natural part of our humanity. We own our bodies, thus we own the gifts that emanate from our bodies. So, our right to life, our right to develop our personalities, our right to think as we wish, to say what we think, to publish what we say, our right to worship or not worship, our right to travel, to defend ourselves, to use our own property as we see fit, our right to due process Ė fairness Ė from the government, and our right to be left alone, are all rights that stem from our humanity. These are natural rights that we are born with. The government doesnít give them to us and the government doesnít pay for them and the government canít take them away, unless a jury finds that we have violated someone elseís rights.


What is a good? A good is something we want or need. In a sense, it is the opposite of a right. We have our rights from birth, but we need our parents when we are children and we need ourselves as adults to purchase the goods we require for existence. So, food is a good, shelter is a good, clothing is a good, education is a good, a car is a good, legal representation is a good, working out at a gym is a good, and access to health care is a good. Does the government give us goods? Well, sometimes it takes money from some of us and gives that money to others. You can call that taxation or you can call it theft; but you cannot call it a right.


A right stems from our humanity. A good is something you buy or someone else buys for you.

Now, when you look at health care for what it is, when you look at the US Constitution, when you look at the history of human freedom, when you accept the American value of the primacy of the individual over the fleeting wishes of the government, it becomes apparent that those who claim that healthcare is a right simply want to extend a form of government welfare.

When I make this argument to my Big Government friends, they come back at me withÖwell, if people donít have health insurance, they will just go to hospitals and we will end up paying for them anyway. Why should that be? We donít let people steal food from a supermarket or an apartment from a landlord or clothing from a local shop. Why do we let them take healthcare from a hospital without paying for it? Well, my Big Government friends contend, thatís charity.

They are wrong again. It is impossible to be charitable with someone elseís money. Charity comes from your own heart, not from the government spending your money. When we pay our taxes to the government and it gives that money away, thatís not charity, thatís welfare. When the government takes more from us than it needs to secure our freedoms, so it can have money to give away, thatís not charity, thatís theft. And when the government forces hospitals to provide free health care to those who canít or wonít care for themselves, thatís not charity, thatís slavery. Thatís why we now have constitutional chaos, because the government steals and enslaves, and we outlawed that a long time ago.

December 19, 2009

Andrew P. Napolitano, a former judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> </div></div>

LWW

cushioncrawler
12-21-2009, 04:03 PM
ElDubb -- This can lead to some interesting conclusions.
(1) ...... If there iz zero god(s) then there iz zero Rights.
(2)...... There might be (god'given) Rights -- and there are (man'given) Goods -- but, that duznt mean that a Right iz allso good. Any (god'given) Right, might be bad, either all the time or some of the time -- or likewize it might be good.

So, we might hav (god'given) Rights -- which might be good or bad (or not).
And, we hav (man'given) Goods -- and (man'given) Bads.
madMac.