This seems like a strange, maybe even oxymoronic topic. Yet because of the simple nature of a rock, you may soon experience the most profound understanding of human rights you have ever had. So bear with me a moment while I set the stage.
I keep a rock next to me on my desk while I write about rights. It’s a special rock is from my flower bed. For me, it represents the extraordinary yet ordinary citizen of the U.S. It’s just another rock but there is not another one exactly like it anywhere in the universe.
Galaxies and Rocks
Rocks, or their equivalent, make up most of the mass of the galaxies. Our planet is almost entirely solid, loose, or liquid rock. And the galaxies appear to be the same. Now I say all these rocks have rights, and if they do, it seems like we ought to know what they are. Let me show you what they are.
I’ll bet you have some rocks in that flower bed closest to your door. If you have the fun of working in that flower bed, you may decide that your rights supersede the rights of those rocks, and you will move them to some other place. Rocks have rights? Stay with me a minute because here’s the thing: You can remove a rock from its place but you can’t remove its space from the rock.
The space a stone occupies belongs to that stone. It owns that space. That space is the property right of that stone and there is not a thing you can do about it. That property right is natural, inalienable and immutable. Rocks have rights. You bet. Not sure? Then how are you going to keep that stone from taking up its space?
Rocks with Rights Is Too Much for You?
Now some will have a hard time with the idea of rocks having rights. I understand that. So let’s forget all about rights for a moment. A right doesn’t really exist in the physical world anyway. A “right” is an abstract legal concept we use for convenience while we think about the authority something has over itself. So, let’s forget about the abstraction and talk about physical reality.
All the critters and all the plants each do their thing. They grow. Some of them move around and some of them, like the apes, even have some real thinking ability. In the solar system, the heavenly bodies are under the power of gravity which does its thing. When a human being does something, he can be thought of as having authority over himself to do that thing. So we draw out, or abstract that fact so as to focus on it, and we give that authority the name of “a right”. If a bird doesn’t have the authority to build a nest, how can it possibly do that? Authority doesn’t have to be granted by someone in order to exist. In fact, that is the essence of a natural right. It is just naturally there, it’s inherent.
If that makes sense, why can’t we also talk about the apes having rights, and if apes then robins, and then worms and then the planets themselves? If some “thing” can do something, then it must have authority to do it. Ascribing that authority is just another abstraction that lets us see things in a new light. We can learn a lot from this. Stay with me a while and see if you don’t get some real understanding and insights about your rights. Anyway, back to the rocks.
You have property rights just like the rock. That’s the first lesson you can learn about rights. And here is the next lesson. You can try to violate the property rights of a rock but there is only one way you can do it: crush it into gravel or grind it to powder. But now you don’t have a rock anymore; you have gravel or dirt. That proves that the property rights of rocks are inalienable. You cannot alienate the right from the rock. Period. You either have a rock with rights or you have neither.
That is the most important lesson you can ever learn about human rights.
A “right” is just a word for the legal authority you have over yourself. Now to get full value from the time you are spending reading this, go back three paragraphs and ponder their meaning in terms of your own rights to life and the things you are capable of doing. If that is not profound, read it over until it is.
So let’s see. Rocks have a right to their space, their home if you will. What other rights can we find for a rock? I guess they have a right to be heavy, don’t they? What if I decide I don’t like my rocks being heavy? Same problem.