“I know my rights!”
“I know my rights!”
The above phrase has recently been made famous by Steve the Lawn Mower Guy as well as countless other Americans. This phrase has been uttered in defense for gun-ownership, in arguments against compulsory seat belt use, and the installation and use of traffic calming camera-ticketing systems. An argument based on the inherent value of one’s unalienable rights is difficult to debate. However, using a couple simple examples I intend to illustrate the hypocrisy amongst individuals on the left and right that absolutely grinds my gears…
Gear grinding point being, that, if you are going to make an argument based on one’s possession of having unalienable rights, then please be consistent and allow the argument to hold across differing social and political debates. However, if you are going to fragment and hold separate standards for separate issues when it comes to possessing these rights then please have enough self-awareness that you are doing this and also recognize that you may look like a hypocrite.
Example 1 will use America’s favorite toy to illuminate insight into this simple paradox.
Guns: A Conservatives Take.
The Argument: If you argue on the premise that restriction of firearm access goes against your second amendment rights then fine. However, if you further argue that homosexuals should not get married because they don’t have the right then blow it out your ass. Considering your first argument you SHOULD contend that homosexuals have within their rights the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. If not, you’re argument based on having unalienable rights to possess firearms is flawed. Thus, you come across as a hypocrite.
Example 2 will use safety legislation to draw a second liberal paradox.
Guns: A Liberals Take.
The Argument: If you argue that restricting firearm access is the fundamental answer to the preservation of life and safety as basic human rights with a government’s responsibility to restrict second amendment rights then fine. However if you further argue that compulsory safety legislation is an infringement of ones civil rights then blow it out your ass. Considering your first argument you SHOULD contend that compulsory safety legislation is necessary for the preservation of life and safety. If not, you’re argument based on having unalienable rights to life and safety is flawed. Thus, you come across as a hypocrite.
I understand that the statements above are highly debatable, ethically challengeable, and philosophically controversial, however, my intention is simply to stimulate some thought and self-awareness before one bases an argument on simply having rights. Obviously not all rights are comparable and have different societal, political, and economic ramifications, however, ones declaration of having rights in an argument should air on the side of caution. If anything, this practice should allow oneself to internally debate their morals and values; an invaluable process we can all benefit from, even Steve the Lawn Mower Guy.