Sen. Bernie Sanders said: “I believe that health care is a right of all people.” He’s not alone in that contention. That claim comes from Democrats and Republicans and liberals and conservatives.
It is not just a health care right that people claim. There are “rights” to decent housing, decent food, a decent job, and prescription drugs. In a free and moral society, do people have these rights? Let’s begin by asking ourselves: What is a right?
In the standard usage of the term, a “right” is something that exists simultaneously among people. In the case of our U.S. Constitutional decree, we have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Our individual right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness imposes no obligation upon another other than the duty of noninterference.
As such, a right imposes no obligation on another. For example, the right to free speech is something we all possess simultaneously. My right to free speech imposes no obligation upon another except that of noninterference. Similarly, I have a right to travel freely. Again, that right imposes no obligation upon another except that of noninterference.
Paul Broun for Congress