Our rights to life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness
can only be secured by a state strictly separated from religion

09 May 2013

Concern for the Rights of Rights-Violators: Philosophy in Action Podcast

By Diana Hsieh

On Sunday's Philosophy in Action Radio, I answered a question on concern for the rights of rights-violators. The question was:

Is it wrong to be indifferent to the rights-violations of people who advocate rights-violations? Some celebrities actively promote the violation of rights by lending their support to political groups. For example, former American Idol contestant Krista Branch has actively campaigned against gay marriage on behalf of Focus on the Family. However, in a recent interview, Branch complained that people were pirating her songs. I know that Branch's intellectual property rights should be respected, and I would never pirate her music. Yet I can't feel any sympathy for her, given that she advocates violating other people's rights. I'm of the opinion that people who advocate for the use of force against others should not be spared from the consequences of the kind of culture that creates. Is that wrong? Am I being malevolent? Should I defend her rights, even though she advocates violating my rights?

My Answer, In Brief: Even the rights of people who advocate rights-violations should be respected, but rational people should crusade for the principle and innocent people being harmed by rights-violations, not for those mixed cases.

Download or Listen to My Full Answer:

Tags: Activism, Celebrities, Judgment, Justice, Moral Wrongs, Politics, Rights
To comment on this question or my answer, visit its comment thread.

A podcast of the full episode – where I answered questions on personality and sense of life, helping a self-destructive friend, concern for the rights of rights-violators, and more – is available here: Episode of 5 May 2013.

You can automatically download podcasts of Philosophy in Action Radio by subscribing to Philosophy in Action's Podcast RSS Feed:
About Philosophy in Action Radio

Philosophy in Action Radio applies rational principles to the challenges of real life in live internet radio shows on Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings. For information on upcoming shows, visit the Episodes on Tap. For podcasts of past shows, visit the Show Archives.

Philosophy in Action's NewsletterPhilosophy in Action's Facebook PagePhilosophy in Action's Twitter StreamPhilosophy in Action's RSS FeedPhilosophy in Action's YouTube Channel

Comment Rules

Rule #1: You are welcome to state your own views in these comments, as well as to criticize opposing views and arguments. Vulgar, nasty, and otherwise uncivilized comments will be deleted.

Rule #2: These comments are not a forum for discussion of any and all topics. Please stay roughly on-topic.

Back to TOP