I don’t believe in natural rights or inalienable rights. I think they are desperate philosophical fantasies, much like Heaven and the altruistic Old Man in the Sky waiting to bring us home and grant our every wish.
If we had Natural Rights, wouldn’t we all look like perfect clones sharing all of the same natural attributes like athleticism, fitness, intelligence, health, beauty, penis size, height, high metabolisms, and heart shaped fannies for the ladies? Pipe dreams for the Welfare State.
I do believe in bullies, self defense, and that the best defense is often a good offense. No being under siege here. Banding together against predators and oppressors is healthier than anarchy, until we start having bands so large that we are governed by distant strangers.
Being taught to believe that we have inalienable rights since childhood, even though its obvious we don’t, makes us far less likely to be concerned with losing them. Consider the slave state we subject the vast majority of our children to. They are indoctrinated into government approved rhetoric and propaganda, with no say in the matter, shuffled around in tiny groups with other age segregated participants, all of their First and Second Amendment Rights are stripped from them before they ever learn to exercise them, because they need to be assimilated. If they are independent, disruptive, or truant, they are a threat to keeping the machine running smoothly and quietly. When are students allowed to disagree strongly and vocally with arrogant, overbearing, or aggressive teachers? Do the teachers show them the same respect they demand? Hell no!
Defending oneself from a schoolyard bully and winning handily is worse than starting the fight. Using equalizers like edged, electronic, chemical, or impact weapons makes it criminal. If a ten year old brings brass knuckles to school and breaks a bully’s nose, he was looking for a fight and wanted to hurt someone, rather than being tired of being punched, kicked, spit on, wedgied, swirlied, pantsed, robbed, humiliated, and terrorized since starting his education.
The only rights we have are those we refuse to give away or allow to be taken from us. Many of us old timers bitch about the Attitude of Entitlement so much of Today’s Youth have, but we share it at a Constitutional level. There is no evidence that any of our “rights” are inalienable, but we all think they are ours and that the someone, somewhere, will protect them for us. Its pure wishful thinking to believe that Big Brother is looking out for anyone’s interest but its own.
You get a little free speech so you think someone is listening. You get your Second Amendment pistols and rifles (barely), while Uncle Sam gets all the military with all of their tanks, missiles, intelligence gathering, chemical weapons, and nukes as well as control over communications, transportation, taxes, etc.
Darwinism is not about survival of the fittest, it is about survival of the most adaptable. Being able to honestly assess your individual strengths and weaknesses, as well as your environment, and identifying potential threats, and being able to act boldly on those assessments and observations is what allows us to survive and maintain any rights. Not Nature. Not government.
Debating your so called “rights” is akin to polishing a dog turd. Defending them, by whatever means necessary, is a whole different animal.
Whose got your back?
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I fail to see any reason for Rock Cowles’ post in regards to prepping. If rights are not inalienable and endowed to us by our Creator we have no rights at all, only privileges granted by other men at their whim. Mr. Cowles’ post shows that he has never studied the Bible or the founding of this nation. God save us from ignorance such as he has shown by his commentary. He, like anyone else has the RIGHT to voice his views no matter how foolish or ignorant they may be and I will fight to the death to support his right to do so regardless of whether I agree with him or not.
To show just ONE point he shows his ignorance about: A student is not punished for defending themselves at school worse that the initial aggressor using whatever improvised weapon he may find at hand (if in fact one is needed or justified). True they will be punished for “fighting at school” because of allegedly well meaning human beings making rules which go AGAINST basic Natural Laws and Human Rights, that is due to man’s arrogance and ignorance in thinking themselves more intelligent than their Creator, and in so doing becoming fools.
Finally, Inalienable Rights have nothing to do with genetic traits one is born with, nothing in nature is the same, not even “identical twins”. Being born equal doesn’t mean physically, but with the same Rights, there is a huge difference. How boring would the world and life itself be if everyone and everything was all the same with no differences? Some would like to see such a world and are doing their best to create one. How’s that Hope and Change working for you?
MWP….. FELLA OR PHILLY…. TRY READING THROUGH THAT AGAIN. GUYS RATHER CYNICAL AND HARD ASSED BUT THE ‘JIST’ OF WHAT HE IS SAYING IS RATHER SAD..LY TRUE. IF YOUR A BORN AGAIN TYPE, I CAN SEE WHERE YOU GOT OFF THE BUS. SO EGNORE THAT POINT OF VIEW. TAKE THE HARD FACTS AND CHEW ON THEM FOR A WHILE. INALIENABLE…… FRANKLY LIFE LIBERTY AND THE PURSUIT OF HAPPYNESS ARE YOURS ONLY IF YOU…. HAVE THE RIGHT STUFF TO ‘MAINTAIN’ THEM AT …. YOUR …. EXPENSE.
Rock Cowles has offered a perspective on our so-called rights (disappearing before our eyes) I’ve never considered. Sadly, far too many people are sitting on their hands, captivated in slack-jawed wonder at “Dancing with the Stars” to have any understanding of what is going on in our nation, and how close to the edge we have come. I hope he’s one of the winners.
I must admit that I’m not a big fan of this post either. However, I think I can understand where the author is coming from. The one point that I would like to make is about the use of the word “inalienable”. About a year ago I was doing some basic research into the difference between the words “inalienable” and “unalienable”. Most dictionary definitions would lead you to believe these words are interchangeable…and for the most part they probably are. However, several law books that I looked at, including Blacks Law Dictionary do make a distinction.
Our Declaration of Independence was originally written using the word “inalienable”. Those reviewing the original manuscript recommended that this word be changed to “unalienable” [i.e. ‘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.]
According to legal interpretations of these tow words, there was a distinction made and the word that now appears in the final version of the Declaration of Independence [unalienable] was chosen such that unalienable rights are those guaranteed by God and could not be be taken away. From Blacks Law Dictionary, unalienable rights are “incapable of being alienated, that is, sold and transferred.”
On the other hand, “inalienable” rights where those that were granted and regulated by a Government and could therefore be taken away “by the consent of the governed”.
I know this is small consolation to those of us that are now and have been watching our rights be systematically destroyed and trampled over the years. In fact, I think the author makes a good point. From a young age, we have been indoctrinated in certain beliefs. I can honestly say though that my early education left a positive impression on me and I’m pretty sure our Founding Fathers would approve. On the other hand, children of today learn very little of the founding of the United States and the principles upon which this nation was founded.
So, although I am not a fan of this post, I remain open minded enough to at least try to empathize. Understanding your unalienable rights starts with a strong belief in God. Without that, you surely will one day see or consent to seeing your inalienable rights obliterated by an oppressive Government.
I appreciate the many comments on my post and Rourke’s open-mindedness in posting it. One of the things that I believe has made America a great nation has been Free Thinkers who were willing to go against the flow and stand by what they believe, regardless of cost. Most Americans say they believe in Freedom of Religion, until they run into someone who is vocal and does not share or endorse their beliefs.
To judge me for my disbelief that some entity is going to make everything right is to endorse a dependent mindset that could place yourself and your loved ones at peril. If the SHTF, Wal-Mart and Welfare checks will go the way of the Dodo Bird. Even if you are part of a like-minded group, it is ultimately you whom you’ll need to depend on.
FWIW, I’ve spent years studying the bible, actually reading several translations all of the way through, as well as a great deal of apologetics. I’ve also studied many other religions. I was a born again Christian for years. I didn’t get swayed by the devil, disillusioned, or bitter. The many questions I had made more sense than any of the answers the experts had. Being an atheist, agnostic, or Ignostic is not a popular position in this country. I did not chose it, it choose me. Once the light revealed things, the darkness could no longer hide them. I became rational.
Our Nations founders were Free Thinkers. Thomas Jefferson was a deist. Do some research on him, Ben Franklin, John Adams, and their peers. Goggle “The Jefferson Bible”. You’ll be surprised.
I have no intention of turning John’s forum into a religious debate. The point of my post was to encourage others to think for themselves at all levels when prepping. The “rights” we were indoctrinated to believe were our birthright are disappearing slowly and gradually, so most people don’t do much more than grumble. The Patriot Act took a great many of them. The National Defense Authorization Act leaves us up a stream without a paddle unless we unite and act now.
How many of you have contacted you elected officials to protest this loss of your rights? Ran for office? Written a guest post or a letter to the editor? Still waiting for someone else to fix things?
If you disagreed with my guest post, or my follow up comments, for other than religious reasons, do us both a favor and Google Overton Window. Its important food for thought.
If you always do what you always did, you’ll always get what you always got. Unless something changes…
I’m the guy (regular reader) that reco’d Sam, partly because I supported your publishing a post that included a statement that I knew you disagreed with. If more people were even handed like, we’d all be in a better spot, IMO.
This sure is thought provoking post and reading through the comments has made me do even more thinking. I think the biggest thing I’ll be taking away from this post is actually about Rourke. I had no idea he didn’t alter or decline to post comments. That’s really very big of him because you know what? It’s Rourke’s Blog and he can do what ever he wants with it. Gives me a lot to think about in regards to my own brand new little blog.
I actually agreed with most of this article other then the whole not believing in any kind of higher power what so ever thing. I do agree that we are basically taught not to defend ourselves and if we do then we get expelled, fired or imprisoned. That being said, we should not have to defend ourselves against asshats all the time.
Thumbs up to Rock for the Article and thumbs up to Rourke for posting it and all the comments, even some that bashed his own blog.
Has nothing to do with prepping. Rourke does’nt write his own post anymore, just a cobbled together mess of guest post. And if rights do not come from a higher a being then they are arbitrary and ever changing which means the only thing you stand against is the political party you disagree with.
Much like the gust post which has several people upset – I approved your comment. I RARELY (with all caps) delete comments or edit them in any way because I believe that everyone has the right to their opinion. That ‘everyone” includes those I disagree with, agree with, as well as despise.
Whether the post has anything to do with prepping is totally dependent on perspective.
Lastly – regarding the negative comments on the blog. I surmise that yo feel I have had too many guest posts. Honestly – I agree with you.
Rock, I’m glad you put follow-up comments on here. To be honest, after reading your article I wasn’t sure what you were trying to say….what your point was. Even after reading all the comments on here, I thought, “What in the world are they arguing about?” Whether our rights are inalienable or not is irrelevant. There will always be someone, usually a government, trying to take someone else’s “rights” away. Regardless of wheither or not they are inalienable, we have to be willing and able to defend our “rights.” Is sounds kind of like this whole argument has been about how two words are defined….”inalienable” and “rights.”
Everyone is entitled to an opinion and I have a mixed one on this post. Agree with much of what is said, however the author has a fundamental mistake – inalienable rights can only be God given, and not given by government or mankind. Whether you believe in God or not, it doesn’t change the concept or premise of the argument. Inalienable rights are a framework with which we set our standards, whether they are ever globally achievable or not. It sets the bar to which we must attempt to aspire to uphold. In my mind, its not so much being given these rights as it is to support and uphold them for everyone. Its up to every person (and not government) to protect these rights for ourselves and others.
You said, ” however the author has a fundamental mistake – inalienable rights can only be God given, and not given by government or mankind”. I’m not sure how any of what I said was a fundamental mistake, as I clearly stated I did not believe in inalienable rights.
I’m all for helping others, but I realize human nature is such that if my kid is hungry and so is yours, most folks will do whatever it takes to make sure their kid eats, even if others starve. The more independent, autonomous, and prepared you are, the greater you ability to provide for your own and perhaps help others instead of having to make horrible choices.
I’ll let yall debate the existence of heaven ,hell ,God, and Satan…….that one won’t really be settled in everyone’s mind till its all over with and in the books. One way or the other, that’s the trouble with faith…..its faith. I will say I totally agree with the man about rights. Like the great philosopher Neil Young wrote. “they give you this but you pay for that” the rights I had when I was 16 are not here today. And that was but 30 short years ago. It’s truely sad.
This author clearly has not understanding of the philosophical foundation for rights language. It has nothing to do with Christianity, any man who sees order in creation can reason that this order comes from an orderer, and that while that God might be unknowable, the order of creation (SCIENCE) is, and that part of science is the Natural Moral Law.
If the author really doesn’t think we have a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness then why fight for it as a prepper? Clearly his understanding of natural rights is flawed.
Beauty or talent can’t be rights because they can be taken away by time, injury, or assault, and not all people have them to start with, thus they are not inalienable.
Welfare or Healthcare or the like can’t be rights because they are given to us by men and by men can be taken away by men.
True rights are inalienable, that is they can’t be taken away from us. I hear your brains turning saying, HEY WAIT A MINUTE those things can be taken away!!! And it is true, that people can try to take away inalienable rights. You can try to take my life by shortening it, but I don’t have a right to everlasting life, just to a life, and no matter how much you try to takef from me, I am always free to live what I have been given to the fullest. Liberty likewise can be assaulted by others, but the fact of the matter is that even if you throw me in chains, you can never coerce my will, you can never force me to bear false witness, you can never force me to do what I do not want to do, at some level, if I am brave enough not to fear death, then I am always free to choose good and avoid evil. And although you can set up many road blocks to happiness, happiness is not guaranteed, but nothing can stop me from pursuing it!!!
It doesn’t matter where you live or what the popular religion is, each of us can and will seek God, sometimes in much different ways than society. Likewise speech can’t be stopped. Throw me in jail, crucify me, I will still speak the truth if I choose to for as long as I can. And though you deprive me of the means of defending myself, be it with sticks and stones, or make shift machine guns I will bear arms and I will defend myself. The example of the Warsaw uprising should demonstrate this, starving Jews and occupied Poles were able to take up arms against Hitlers Juggernaut.
America’ Tradition of rights comes from a realization that since these things can’t be taken away from people, perhaps they are intrinsic to what it means to be human, and perhaps a GOOD government should not just concede the inevitability of these things, but proactively protect them.
We are preppers because we believe in these inalienable rights, because we plan to exercise them, for if we truly lack any unalienable rights then we should accept serfdom, and consign ourselves to what ever comes..
I don’t understand half of what you say and the other half doesn’t make sense. Your definitions are inaccurate and your “logic” is all over the place. Life is temporary. We prep to extend both it and it’s quality in short term or long term emergencies including and up to SHTF or TEOTWAWKI. We prep to survive as individuals first, then families, communities, nations, and finally as a species.
Many people don’t seek “God”. The OP was never about religion, but some readers took issue with my exercising my inalienable right to freedom of religion.