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Rights vs. Liberties

Strictly speaking, I am not in favour of ‘rights’. The word ‘right’ began as a synonym for ‘law’ and denoted what nascent states could or could not do to interfere in the liberties of their subjects. Only liberties exist in the natural sense and the only debate is the extent to which our liberties (to speak freely, to perambulate around, to own and use guns, or whatever) should be restricted by ‘rights’.

Thus rights and liberties are opposites. When you speak of ‘gun rights’ or the ‘right to bear arms’, what you should really be talking about is the abolition of the state’s right (or moral privilege) to interfere with a liberty that we have always had.

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