If we as Americans are to understand and defend our rights we need to understand following 5 principles.
- A right is something that all individuals are entitled to. This one is pretty self explanatory though it does leave us asking the question "how do we know what we are entitled to?" In America we have a Constitution, including a bill of rights, that lists what we are entitled to. For example if we look at the first amendment we see that we are entitled to free speech, freedom of religion, freedom of press, freedom to peacefully assemble, and the freedom to petition the government with our grievances. These are of course only five rights from a list of many rights that are protected under the Constitution. For those who may not know the "basic human right" to have a cake made for yourself is not mentioned. As a matter of fact the Constitution says nothing about citizens being forced to perform services for other citizens.....I stand corrected, the 13th amendment does mention something about the abolition of slavery.
- Rights come from God. This principle is what makes rights so sacred. This is the reason that we go to war over rights. This is why denying someone their rights is such a serious crime. God has endowed mankind with specific rights. This is how we distinguish good government from bad government. If a government is suppressing and denying its citizen's God given rights they are a bad form of government that should be "thrown off". That was the reasoning behind the revolutionary war. It is important for us to understand that governments do not grant their citizens rights. Governments protect rights that already exist. The Constitution is an inspired document, but that is not where our rights come from. They come from God. The Constitution is the system created to recognize and protect those rights.
- Rights are universal. If rights come from God then logic leads us to assume that he did not intend them for one set of people. All people have been given the same rights. The problem is that there are places in this world where people live under tyranny and they are not being allowed to enjoy those sacred rights such as life and liberty.
- Rights do not evolve with the times. This principle may be the hardest for Americans to understand. RIGHTS ARE NOT SOCIALLY CONSTRUCTED! If we look back at some of the stories I referenced earlier we see instances where the homosexual community has decided to make up their own rights. For example the right to define marriage in terms that are convenient for their life style choices. We also see an example of people, laws, and organizations that have decided there exists a right to privacy that supersedes ones God given right to life. This is a dangerous trend. Americans have taken the sense of entitlement to the point where they are now creating their own convenient rights and attacking those sacred God given rights of others.
- One mans rights cannot interfere with another mans rights. To put it simply, your right to swing your arm ends at my nose.