Author Topic: Is Freedom Truly A Right  (Read 517 times)

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Offline Truth OT

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Is Freedom Truly A Right
« on: May 16, 2012, 04:47:22 PM »
Peter Cullen in his robotic guise has often uttered the phrase, "Freedom is the right of every sentient being." For my whole life I took for granted that those words were in fact true. But now, I question whether or not that sentiment actually has any merit. Should everyone truly be free, or should varying levels of freedom exist that each person can progressively earn based on some type of merit based system where individuals must first demonstrate their truthworthiness and ability to handle the responsibilities that true freedom entails?

Offline flapdoodle64

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2012, 06:27:17 PM »
No one has total and complete freedom.

Every society imposes limits on citizens, and the limits vary according to age, social status, wealth, etc. 

Most nations on earth, freedom in a practical sense increases as one's wealth increases. 

And freedom, as used by politicians, is a very ambiguous term. 

The USA supposedly allows freedom of speech and freedom of assembly, but in modern times it means that one is relegated to 'free speech zones' if one wishes to protest. 

Meanwhile, whenever the USA wishes to invade another nation, it claims it is doing so in the name of 'freedom.'  This despite the fact that citizens of invaded nations seldom believe that the invaders wish to bring 'freedom.'

At the other end of the spectrum, when a citizen complains because a government wishes to limit his private arsenal, the citizen will state that the govt. is usurping his 'freedom.'

Nonetheless, even a prisoner at Gitmo has a freedom of choice, to either comply or attempt to rebel.  Of course, prisoners at Gitmo who attempt to go on hunger strikes sometimes get strapped to a gurney and medically force fed.  Still, the prisoner made his attempt to resist, so in that way, he had freedom of choice. 

I think the term is as ambiguous as the term 'Christian.' 

Perhaps we should narrow it somehow...

Offline Dante

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2012, 06:31:29 PM »
Define "right".

If you can't produce evidence that rights are objective, and can't be taken away, then...
Actually it doesn't. One could conceivably be all-powerful but not exceptionally intelligent.

Offline jetson

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2012, 09:44:00 PM »
It seems to me that all humans are 100% free to do whatever they please.  Assuming there is nothing stopping them, of course.

Offline joebbowers

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2012, 09:49:00 AM »
What is a right, and who gives them? Who enforces this?

I think we have the illusion of freedom. Those in power let us think we're free but when incredible injustice and inequality happens, and continues to happen, we know we are truly powerless.

Gay people can't marry, ask them if freedom is a right.
Ask the 2.3 million Americans who are in prison if freedom is a right. Consider when you do that the majority of them are in for non-violent crimes, and nearly a quarter for victim-less crimes such as simple possession of recreational drugs.
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Offline velkyn

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2012, 10:03:31 AM »
I think a certain amount of freedom should be considered a right.  But when someone can't or won't be responsible, then that's when the questions of how much freedom to allow come in.
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Offline plethora

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2012, 11:33:41 AM »
"Freedom is the right of every sentient being."

1) "Freedom"

We have the ability to make a choice when presented with more than one option. These options can be limited by a number of factors (physics, environment, sentient agent capabilities, etc). In the case of humans, these options can also be limited by society via laws, ethics, morals and behavioral codes (that's where 'rights' come in).

I suppose you could say that "freedom" increases as more options are available to the agent and it decreases as less options are made available.

2) "Rights"

These are granted by the societies we live in. As someone who lives in the west, I certainly enjoy many rights granted to me by society that are not granted to the people of North Korea by their government. I would say I have more options available to me when making choices within the framework of the society I live in than a North Korean citizen.

3) Democracy, capitalism and just how "free" we really are

Well ... it kinds depends where you are within the structure of a society. High ranking government officials in North Korea enjoy many more "rights" than the people lower in the hierarchy of that society.

In the west, some people are in very bad situations. Homeless or working for minimum pay and I really don't think democracy or capitalism helps them break free from this and gain more "freedom" (i.e. more financial capabilities).

Back to the question .... is "freedom" a "right"? Well ... not really. It may be the subjective moral belief of some people and some societies that people should have a right to as much "freedom" as possible. Fair enough. But it's not necessarily the default position.
The truth doesn't give a shit about our feelings.

Offline StripeDog

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2012, 06:44:40 PM »
With the things I've seen in this world, I've given up on believing the whole human rights thing. However, regarding a nation, it is the government's responsibility to ensure rights for everyone subject to the government, whether they be a citizen or not.

But that's not always apparent is it?
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Offline Death over Life

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2012, 07:51:08 PM »
Personally, how I see it, the question itself is flawed because it lacks the department of responsibility.

The goal is for freedom, in the most complete sense of the word, to be the status of everybody. The problem with this is with freedom comes responsibility.

How I view it is not by age or gender or whatever, but by ability of taking responsibility for their actions. A few examples for fun:

Imo, I believe that a kid that knows the difference between real life and video games and accepts the responsibilities of such, should be allowed to purchase M Rated Video Games without their parent's consent. However, a 20-year old who gawks at the hearing of a cuss word, and who constantly flaunts censorship due to his paranoia, should not be anywhere near the video games at all. The same can be said for any forms of entertainment.

There are things that I would agree with the age thing, like the youngest to get an actual job being 16, lower the marriage age to 16, lower the drinking and smoking age to 18 etc. But once they have come to term on that age, then it becomes responsibility again. An immature 30 year old should not be allowed to drive while the mature 18 year old deserves a break on the insurance.

Since we see the examples I'm thinking of, the big reason why this isn't accepted is because our standards demand a one shoe size fits all solution where it's possible for things like age and gender discrimination can come into play. I honestly reject the one shoe size fits all premise because we are not units, but individuals, but depending on the individual is depending on how much freedom they deserve, or deserve to have revoked.

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #9 on: July 09, 2012, 06:47:59 PM »
DoL

Those are all grand ideas but how do you go about implementing laws/rules/regulations on those arbitrary and subjective terms?
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.

Offline Death over Life

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2012, 08:07:02 AM »
DoL

Those are all grand ideas but how do you go about implementing laws/rules/regulations on those arbitrary and subjective terms?

And that's the dilemma it's in!  ;D

I honestly don't know other than by going either by the current system, or by going in an anything goes system, in which I would honestly prefer the latter. Then again though, a parent should be involved in a child's life, in which the latter negates this viewpoint, which is why it is extremely hard to create something of the sort. We could try testing, but testing children does nothing since even at a young age, people know how to lie to get what they want.

I may just have to side by and say go by the current system, but we should be more strict on those who abuse the rights of M-rated games who use them as a scape-goat for their crimes, and reward those who have shown they are mature kids despite having bat-shit crazy parents (not all but some kids have these parents). It's also kind of like the car-driving where despite I have a clean driving record despite being on the road since I'm 16, never had a ticket or anything other than a warning, I am still charged heavily more on insurance than others because I'm young and thus  a more "dangerous" driver, because of the idiots my age.

I think the punishment/reward/right/privelege thing could be based off of records, like do they have a criminal/juvenile record, what kind of grades they make in school etc. I don't know the fullest extent of the ideas, but they are thoughts and ideas never the less.

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2012, 08:16:56 AM »
I would never trust parents as a whole to make decisions about every law/rule/regulation. Everyday that I leave the house I see parents failing their children. To be honest it makes sad. In my perfect world you wouldn't be able to have children with out parenting classes and testing. I don't think having children should be a "right". It should be something that as you put it is earned. Maybe then we could try out your no regulation route DoL. But until parents are actually accountable before and after birth I don't think your plan would work.
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2012, 08:27:20 AM »
It would be helpful to know what 'freedom' is. A definition would certainly help. The cry of 'freedom' has been a rallying call for the disaffected (and sometimes the just) since man first thought of the word.

If you are alone on a tropical island or living miles from anywhere in some wilderness (and ignoring the 'freedom' of the food species) you are probably as free as you will ever be. You can do and say what you want and no one will say, "Stop it!"

You may say that you have then no freedom to be on the internet, or drive a car (as there isn't a road or there are too many trees) but these are not 'freedoms.'

Worse still, if someone else arrives, or you go out in search of others, immediately, your freedoms are restricted.

You either tell them what to do, "I'd like a Coke please." or they tell you what to do, "Could you move to that table, this one is reserved." or they restrict your freedom, "I'm sorry, there is no Coke, will Pepsi do?"

So freedom is not really about choices, it is about dealing with your own needs. If your needs are equal or less than what is available to you, then you have freedom.
RELIGION, n. A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable. Ambrose Bierce

Offline Kimberly

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Re: Is Freedom Truly A Right
« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2012, 08:44:51 AM »
So freedom is not really about choices, it is about dealing with your own needs. If your needs are equal or less than what is available to you, then you have freedom.

That's a very good way to put it.
Thank you for considering my point of view; however wrong it may be to you.