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Choice and Philosophy Kushay's Matter Bank

[AK] Rights and Choices

Source: Rifan Ibnu

Essentially, rights and choices are the same, it’s only different in a sense that choice is an application of the right.
Question: why do people have rights? Four approaches.

1. Ontological approach: a concept of possession. Are you entitled or own the right? (regardless of the harms/benefits) example: the right to spend your money that you have because you simply own it. The right to harm your body because you simply own it.

Many arguments are derivable from this. One of which is birth lottery, relation between state and person (legal responsibility), payback concept, social contract,

Questions to ask to analyze this concept:

– Where is the source of that right? Case study: death penalty. Government can’t derogate someone’s life because the life does not come from the government. Moreover, your criminal action is a consequence of your ACTION and not your LIFE. So gov should simply take the capability of one to do action and not his life.

– Whether the subject earns the right justly? Case study: should we allow capital owner disproportionately earns more profit than his workers? Proponents might say that it’s justified because he has worked hard to obtain his capital. But the question is, is his means just? NO. It is most likely gained through evil means like exploitation, colonization, etc.

2. Capability approach: Whether the subject is capable of exercising the right. This should be discussed because oftentimes a wrongful exercise of rights might lead to irreversible harms. Two layers of analysis.

– Consent. Are you consented to exercise a right? Ex: Facebook might infringe your privacy because you are consented by the time you tick privacy policy, and forced military conscription is justified because you vote for the government.

– Quality of the consent. Tons of external factors affects your decision-making. You process that factors and then make decisions. Are the external factors good? (Single or multiple stimuli? Complex or simple? Time sensitive? Balanced or biased? Comparable or not?) Also, is your process of making decision good? (are you physically able in making decision? Are you pressured in doing it?) The simplest example would be the processing capability of children’s.

3. Whether the exercise of the right is meaningful: what does “meaningful” means? Many things. Materially meaningful, happiness, etc. Be very clear that this is not contingent to practical benefits. Example: People has the right to be offensive on social media assuming he has the right, and he is capable of exercising it. It’s justified because his offensive words will be meaningful because it’s basically the only way of him expressing his thought written. Understand that verbal and written communication is different.

Sometimes, this can go to an even more abstract way. Example, THW Ban Extremely Violent Sports. One can argue that it’s not right for us to be entertained from the suffering of others. But so what? Here’s when the ethics came in. Or in THW Ban Gambling. It can be said that it’s immoral for you to surrender yourself to an act of luck because happiness should be a product of happiness and merit.

This approach is different from practical benefits because practical benefits is contingent towards empirical study. (statistics, etc.). Also, say the obvious, but explain the obvious! Example, lying is bad. But why is lying bad? Explain it.
There are two types of motions. Legal and Moral motions. Notice that exercise of legal rights is derived from moral rights. I mean, why the hell would the state allow you to do something when it’s morally bad?

4. Comparison of the moral position of that right over the other: for example, when your exercise of right harms other’s rights. But that previous point is weak because anything you do can harm making the society less productive. A legit analysis would be the case study of abortion – which right is more important, the rights of the mother or fetus? One proposer might say that the mother is only a proxy agent while abortion potentially strips the fetus’s rights eternally.

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