Rights Through the Use of Force

Rights Through the Use of Force

I want to continue to look at the issue of rights and turn my attention to when others use force to assert the conditions for their rights. One great example of this is gay rights. First off, I do not hate or fear gay people. I believe all people have the right to live however they see fit, as long as they are not doing harm to others (the non-aggression principle). Gays have the same rights as any other individuals and nothing more. To assert any other special privileges and then use the force of government to create the conditions necessary for that supposed right is in my thinking wrong.

Take for example the often sighted case of the Colorado baker who was forced to bake a cake for a gay couple despite his religious objections to gay marriage. First, why would a gay person want to give their money to somebody who is so opposed to their beliefs and lifestyle? Second, why force somebody to do something they do not want to do? Despite what you may feel about the baker, doesn’t he have the right to his property, and the right to dispose of it as he sees fit. Who would have been hurt if he didn’t bake the gay couple their cake? They could have easily found another baker, probably one who supported their lifestyle, to bake their cake and give their money to. Would this gay couple like it if they were forced into doing business with skinheads or the Westboro Baptist Church? But it is o.k. for them to do this to others. It seems a bit hypocritical and has nothing to do with the rights of the homosexual couple. This is nothing more than political correctness gone wild.

Gay marriage is another good example of where I think gays take the notion of rights too far. First, I don’t believe that the government should be involved in marriage. If two people want to be married they should be able to do that through whatever means and practices they deem is appropriate for their situation. If the state were not involved in marriage then there would be nothing standing between people being able to enter into any type of contractual union that they deemed appropriate. Second, returning to the issue of property rights, no one – gay, straight, black, white – should be able to force another person to give up any part of their property. This means that employers, churches, and any other organization should have the right to decide what conditions would allow for the imparting of benefits and membership within their organization based on their own standards, because it is their property that they are giving away to provide these benefits. If we have a right to property, and the right to dispose of it as we see fit, then nobody should be forced to use their property in ways that are against their beliefs whether anybody agrees with them or not.

We should be free to associate with whoever we choose and also to not associate. This should be a right for everybody – it should be universal. People should not be forced to associate and they should not be forced to give up their property rights just because one group of people does not like the ideas of another group. As long as force is not being applied, and peoples property rights are not being violated people should be left to freely associate.

Consider for a minute before you take an action whether you would like the thing that you are doing done to you. This is the golden rule and this has appeared throughout history in many different religious and philosophical systems. It is a universally applicable maxim that if embraced and practiced could bring much peace and understanding between people. Do you like being forced to do what is against your interests? Then don’t force others into this same situation.

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