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Ethan Victor

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What, to you, are basic human rights?

This is quite a tough one to sum up in one discussion:

"...We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness..."

1- Which ones summarize the scope of liberties, as a whole?
(name the ones -or your own- that give the whole perspective of liberties)

2- Can you define the basic human rights in terms of material, dimensional, spiritual- or any combination thereof?

3- Could these change? What could make them change?

4- Are they sustainable?

5- Also: where do those rights come from?

PS- Please don't make Q5 such an issue here, this isn't the purpose.

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    Nov 7 2011: 1. life
    2. Education
    3. Health Care (psychological care as well)
    4. freedom (political, economic)
    5. Food
    6. Shelter
    7. Clothing
    8. The right to reproduce without having anyone arbitrary say that they cannot (For those who want to nitpick at this I am not justifying rape, molestation, etc). What I am referring to is how this is seen as affecting the environment because the more people that consume, the more resources are used. I think this is a matter of government, economics and politics and not because people need to have less sex. Also there are many areas in the world in which many individuals do not eat, so once again I do not think reproduction is the issue but power is.

    These are what I think are basic human rights and for the sake of avoiding a long response this is what I'll say: All of these are threaten or seen as impediments when political economies are created (such as a capitalistic democratic system)
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      Nov 7 2011: it is interesting that for reproduction, you've mentioned a sorta disclaimer that this right actually means a negative right, namely, nobody can stop you from doing so, not that anybody has to provide it for you.

      however, isn't it true for education and health care too? logically, it is the very same situation, health care and education won't just happen on its own, you need somebody else to do it. you need a doctor and a teacher. so i assume you want to extend that disclaimer to these areas too. we can not stop or prevent or scare people away from learning and getting health care. however, nobody is required to provide these services.

      if you want the government to maintain hospitals and schools, why don't you also want publicly financed mothers-for-rent kinda service? or sperm banks for women? as perverted as it sounds, isn't it logically equivalent to publicly financed schools?
      • Nov 7 2011: I would amend your first law to say you are the owner of your life and you should be able to live your life within the rules of your socieity.
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          Nov 7 2011: Thanks for the input but I disagree,

          I do not think that we have to live our lives in accordance to societal norms. I'm not saying that we should all be rebellious and go out and do whatever we want but not all societal norms are effective ways maximizing ones well-being or potential. some societies have better principles and norms than others. Also most societies demand that these norms be followed without exceptions and without question. I'm sure this is perhaps not what your referring to but I think there needs to be a little liberty/freedom from the individual. If one is to live their life in accordance to all the rules of society then one is not really the owner of their own lives.

          That reminds me, intellectually we can be critical of such a statement because we are privileged enough to have access to a forum like this and discuss these issues but lets be honest here: if our lives were in constant terror and threatened in just about every waking moment, then having a right to life would mean something, not only because of society but because we have been placed here in a situation at the expense of other, external influences. I'll say this: imagine your self in a homeless situation? Imagine yourself being desperate. Imagine yourself constantly being tortured? Imagine yourself constantly having to look over your shoulder? Imagine yourself with no food and water (which is vital to sustain your life) If you can imagine this or relate to this you will know that all these abstract principles, all these social norms that you cling to dearly, means nothing in the face of real danger. Real desperation. Real terror.The only thing that matters is your will to live and if this is at the expense of another individual you could not possible understand what gives them such authority. If this is at the expense of the government (some of what I said applies to governmental responsibility), you'd question its legitimacy.
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        Nov 7 2011: Nice to talk to you again Krisztain, I should have expected you to respond to this post so I'm not that surprised.

        I can only speak from personal experience so if you have anything to offer that is new to me please do so because I'm actually tired of talking about this. Being an individual who cares about the sustainability of the biotic communities on earth, I often hear many (namely biologist) who state that one of the main reasons why the environment is not being sustained properly is because there are 7 billion individuals on the planet and this means that more resources are going to be consumed. I do not think the blame can be put on reproduction being that most families really have lots of kids for economic reasons (there are other reasons as well). As an old physical science and biology teacher once told me: "There are enough resources for everyone on the Planet". Second it must be noted that we only run into this issue when governments and economic systems are established. Many societies have flourished without a centralized government but due to modernity things are really changing and a lot of resources are being taken away from many societal groups (once again I'm not advocating that we go back to being hunter gathers). I think environmental issues is really an issue of government, politics and economics (and this should not be the case). So in other words, I do not agree with the 1 child rule implemented in the government in China (although and I'll say this in capital letters I UNDERSTAND THE RATIONAL BEHIND IT).

        I'll be honest and my apologies but your second paragraph is odd. Really odd and a misconstrue of what I'm saying. I understand what your saying but I'm choosing to not comment on it as much being that it does not reflect what I'm really saying. And there not logically equivalent because becoming a teacher or a doctor or having kids is a matter of choice. Telling someone they cannot become a teacher or doctor or have children is arbitrary.

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