On Human Rights

What are human rights and where do they come from? Everyone probably has a different and unique answer but I think we all share a common stance on the question. We all can acknowledge that we have rights as people but I think we disagree on what rights we have and how we have them.

Right off the top I want to state that our rights are not given to us by the government, or the nation or other people or some supreme being. Our rights are inherent in our existence as conscious and sentient beings. As such we are responsible for exercising and maintaining those rights. That is where the trouble lies, because oftentimes people take issue with other people who are exercising their rights in a way that may not be agreeable.

For example, one of my favorite topics, free speech. I have a right to free speech, I honestly don’t give a shit what others say I can and cannot say. The government and private companies and other people are constantly trying to limit this basic human right. Often times it is under the guise of limiting hate speech, but other times it is just because they don’t agree with what I (or the other person) is saying.

That said, I don’t personally hold or voice any beliefs that could be construed as hate speech. I do probably have a few beliefs that would anger people (like I believe there is evidence that there is a genetic component to intelligence). I also think that if you hold a belief that I personally think of as vile you still have a right to speak on that. I believe that racists have the same right to speech as freedom fighters and feminists and LGBTQ activists.

We can’t pick and choose how rights are applied. This is one of those areas that really is an all or nothing arena. There can be nuance but when you boil it down, the minute you start to add exceptions is the minute you run into tyranny.

I also believe that people have a right to life but also a right to choose to forego their life. We have a right to die if we want, the same as we have a right to live if we want. We also have a right to defend our own life and the lives of others if someone is trying to kill them, even if the act of defending them kills the person attempting murder.

That leads into my next point, just as we have human rights we have the right to defend these rights by any and all means. This is where the meat of the issue of human rights lies for me, and where I am probably going to get controversial. Hear me out though.

The most important human right is the right to be well armed. I don’t want to use the wording of the United States constitution here (bear arms) because I think this is a human right that every person is born with. Rights are not granted by laws or governments or slips of paper, we are born and entitled to them as conscious beings attempting to be free.

So why is being armed the most important right? Because it gives a person the ability to defend themselves from their other rights being taken from them. Sadly, by living in a social state there are other people who think that they are allowed to dictate what rights you do and do not have. Sometimes this goes to an extreme, like in China where people’s rights to free speech and religion are violated and suppressed through violence on par with Nazi Germany, or it can be more subtle. Like in the United Kingdom where a bad joke can land you in jail or in Canada where saying something racist can do the same.

This is because people have given the state a monopoly on violence. Once the state is the only actor able to exact violence against other people then people no longer have recourse. Our rights are only loaned to us on the condition that we follow the rules of the state. And the state is able to take away our rights whenever they see fit.

Even in a Western democracy, tomorrow the government in the United Kingdom could imprison everyone who has ever said something negative about the Queen. There would be little people could do to resist and that is because they have been so thoroughly disarmed over there. Now the odds of something like that happening are next to zero, however the fact that it does not happen is just due to the moral standing of those in power.

When people give up their right to be armed they are handing over the protection of all their other rights to the government. They are trusting other people to not infringe on their human rights. Just because something might not happen does not mean it will not happen. History shows many cases of formerly free countries falling into tyranny and people being unable to do anything about it.

We are told that things like handing over a monopoly of violence to the government is in our best interest. That it is a matter of public safety. No one who wants to take away your rights is going to outright tell you that they are doing it because they want to harm you. They always tell you that it is in your best interest. Or that it is in the best interest of society. Then people who refuse can be painted as anti-social outsiders. Can be dehumanized so that when the ones who stand against the government are imprisoned or killed the populace goes along with it. They tell themselves that of course Ruby Ridge was justified as it was just a fringe crazy being killed (well in the case of Ruby Ridge his wife and son).

So whenever there is discussion of gun control take a moment to ask why. Why would the government want to disarm its people? Is it really for public safety, or maybe it is because a disarmed populace is a much more governable and obedient populace. Maybe it is because when the people are unable to fight back they can more easily be told what they are allowed to do.

Every right you have, every freedom you have, can only be protected by violence. When push comes to shove that is what it comes down to. Giving up the capacity to defend yourself is essentially handing over every other right you have. It is not about defending yourself against some mugger on the street or a home invader (although that is also important) it is about defending yourself against a state power that wants to tell you what you cannot do, say or think. It is about not ending up like China.

The fact that this stance is considered some right wing conspiracy theory stance is just evidence of how far we have gone down the path to enslavement. That is really what it comes down to. If things got really bad there is little to stop the government pressing an unarmed populace into work camps. It would be done for public safety, just like Canada did to the Japanese in WW2.

Families were locked up in camps, their houses and possessions stripped from them. All in the name of public safety. What is to stop them doing something similar in the event of a crisis in the future? An armed populace makes the cost and effort of enacting violence against the people too high. An armed populace is a free populace.

It is not about hunting, not about target shooting, not about collecting. It is about keeping the government scared of the people. Reminding the government that it has power granted to it by the people, not the other way around. It is about maintaining human rights. The right to speech, religion, property, life and autonomy are protected by the right to be armed.

There is a cost, sadly there will be crimes and violence committed by armed people. There is a cost to freedom, however this cost is less than the price of total safety. Because all you end up doing is granting the government exclusive rights to kill or harm you. It is far more dangerous to be unarmed against an armed state than it is to be among an armed population. One need only to look at China to see what happens when you hand over your right to be armed.

Plus, if everyone is armed and trained then no one has much of an advantage. As it stands now the only people who have firearms in many heavily controlled states are criminals and the government. I would much rather be able to defend myself against armed people than hope that the government will step in to save me.

This also goes beyond firearms. Other tools and training need to be in people’s hands. Things like body armor, night vision, high explosives, silencers and other tools are needed to truly keep the government in check. A good way to look at it is if the cops can have it so should civilians. The government should never be more armed than the ones it governs, for that is the first step to tyranny.

If my desire to remain a free individual and protect the freedom of my loved ones makes me a criminal in the eyes of the state then so be it. If that makes me sound like a crazy person then maybe you are too far gone, too sold to the state to be saved.

I refuse to bow, I refuse to bend. I will keep my human rights for I am free. My eyes are open. There is no compromise, for to cede an inch only leads to everything being taken.

Sorry for the rant, this is just something I have been thinking on for a while. There is a lot of talk around firearm ownership right now and I wanted to point out that being armed is not a privilege but a right. It is the right that guarantees all other rights.

If you read this far please feel free to leave a comment if you disagree. I would be happy to hear your point of view. Happy to discuss this.

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