Thursday, May 18, 2017

Human rights? Where's your evidence?

 Do you have evidence that we really have rights, even though someone might disagree? What if someone were to ask you to prove the existence of human rights, in much the way a religious skeptic were to ask for proof of the existence of God. Would you have a good answer for them?

13 comments:

John Moore said...

Rights don't exist on their own "out there" in the world. Rights only exist insofar as people defend them. To prove the existence of a human right, all you have to do is punish people who violate those rights.

Jimmy S. M. said...

I agree with John Moore.

Turn the question around to those who do assert that human rights "really" exist- What if someone were to ask you to prove the existence of human rights?

Victor Reppert said...

In other words, if you are in a society where there is no one there to defend those rights, you don't have them. It is not that they exist and are being violated by the government under which you live, if you can't get your government to guarantee them, they don't exist.

Here we have the moral implications of atheism.

Joe Hinman said...

I do not accept moral realism unless it;s based upon God If
Go is real human rights are real to the extent that the only true and prefect judge and standard of good says they do. If there were a world without 'God there would e no moral standards outside of social contract.Since God is real there is a grounding for moral axioms,Human rights are moral axioms.

John Moore said...

A political right is different from a moral right. Political rights are what you fight for and compel the government to recognize. But then there's the question of what rights the government should recognize. That's a moral question.

Your typical atheist morality says the government should do what it can to maximize human flourishing. Human flourishing is something we all instinctively strive for (often in misguided ways). But it's an objectively measurable thing.

So indeed, you might not have certain rights that you should have.

Joe Hinman said...

politic is struggle between people, political rights are right afforded in the politic or the commonweal. But everyone tries to pin political rightson a higher level. Mao didn't he dignified t on a gun,But most thinkers have.

In city of God St, Augustine talks about the common weal says governments are just organized gangs. we were talking about Human rights and human rights are not just political.

bmiller said...

@John Moore,

You've identified 2 types of rights but what is a 'human right' and why should I accept your definition?

Jimmy S. M. said...

"Here we have the moral implications of atheism."

What recourse does the theist have, that is unavailable to the atheist(or otherwise moral non-realist), when "rights" are being violated, that is distinguishable from wishful thinking?

Chad Handley said...

"What recourse does the theist have, that is unavailable to the atheist(or otherwise moral non-realist), when "rights" are being violated, that is distinguishable from wishful thinking?"

Using John Moore's definition that you eagerly agreed with, if God exists, then all violations of human rights will be punished eventually in the final judgment. That would, by John Moore's definition, be sufficient to establish that everyone has human rights.

Chad Handley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chad Handley said...

"Human flourishing is something we all instinctively strive for (often in misguided ways). But it's an objectively measurable thing."

Is it? And in what units is human flourishing measured? And by what device?

Objectively, who is flourishing more, Pope Francis or Richard Dawkins? Please show your work.

Joe Hinman said...

Jimmy S. M. said...
"Here we have the moral implications of atheism."

What recourse does the theist have, that is unavailable to the atheist(or otherwise moral non-realist), when "rights" are being violated, that is distinguishable from wishful thinking?

I think you are laboring under the false assumption that ethical axioms are only good for compelling others to obey our will. Their primary use is in guiding us Priestley so we concourses know what is right. God offers the only sure ground for ethical axioms.

Joe Hinman said...

"What recourse does the theist have, that is unavailable to the atheist(or otherwise moral non-realist), when "rights" are being violated, that is distinguishable from wishful thinking?"

conviction stemming from the inner certainty that only cones iwth knowing God.