Edison Haines Quote

“With every civil right there has to be a corresponding civil obligation.”

Ratings and Comments

Mohamed Didi, Maldives

Expect no civil rights without civil obligation!

Bruce, 'Bama-Roll Tide

Absolutely! One persons civil right is the everyone else's and the governments civil obligation. I know my bill of rights but I am going to look up what my civil rights are. It is interesting to note that we did not always have or at least did not know about civil rights. Two Texans were important in the Civil Rights Act 0f 1964. Lyndon Johnson led the charge that required equality of treatment and service in interstate commerce and in housing. George Herbert Walker Bush as a congressman voted against it. Go figure!

E Archer, NYC

There is a distinction between natural born inalienable rights and civil rights. Civil rights (as per Roman law) are the rights granted to the citizenry from the state (i.e. Caesar). Inalienable rights are from our Creator and, well, inalienable. With civil rights comes civil obligations to the state from which they come. The equality of treatment granted by the Civil Rights Act merely covered government subsidies and emoluments. It is another corruption of the language and role of the state. There is no civil obligation for the right to free speech -- there may be unavoidable consequences for lying or being hateful (or telling the truth for that matter), but judgement (or karma) is from our Creator not from our state. When government tries to take the place of God in meting out justice, look out.

Mike, Norwalk

Rights are a free gift from God, inalienable/unalienable, and a faculty of birth without strings. To catagorize such rights as civil makes them vulnerable to tyrants. Civil rights in a democracy are determined by the mob and may consist with obligations. It is true that man must keep a constant vigilance to preserve such inalienable rights from civil tyrants but obligations are not a part thereof. Love, charity, compassion, etc. for our fellow man are the attributes that spurs men on to protect the rights of others, not obligation.

Bob, Eugene, OR

Statist/socialist garbage.

Sam, Alabama

Good morning gentlemen, I think we over analyze these sometimes, but I am not familiar with Edison Haines so I may be wrong. As I read the quote it brought to mind the fact that people have and do disagree on how to treat other people and because of this many terrible crimes against humanity have been sponsored by nations. As civilized people our nation has gone through some troublesome times and committed our own crimes, but when we come together and agree that something is wrong then we do have an obligation to change such behavior. As for inalienable rights particularly those of divine nature there is some ambiguity here (on this thread) as to what "rights" are. If you are born in Dafar you might look at nations like the US, England, Germany Canada etcetera as glutinous and greedy (if you could see) maybe it is our inalienable right to drive gas hogs to work with one rider while there are hundreds more going the same place at the same time and so on. Maybe it is our inalienable right to spend hundreds of billions in the middle east (would we if there was no oil, just a question) and nip and pick at world hunger. The truth is God has given mankind the ability to choose and mankind has chosen to limit other mens choices. Please I welcome correction.

  • Reply
EGL, LA    9/21/07

The term civil rights has a latin source as Archer writes. When I hear it used I also give it a more connotative association-one in which would imply that people deserve to treated in a civil manner, as in 'we are a civilized' society and thus should treat our fellow man in a decent and civil way. If we think of it in this simple way it is pretty easy to see that many people in our hierarchical, racist, nationalistic and gender biased culture are often denied this respect.

wuz2blu, Portland, OR

Hear, hear! Well said. I wish more people would pay attention to this idea. Most people these days seem to feel they have rights and *other* people have obligations.

warren, olathe

Absolute fact. If you don't take the responsibility to govern your own actions with reason someone will soon do it for you and your freedom will be lost. That applies to ALL freedom. Speech included. (Of course Liberal speech is still absolute with no responsibilities required.)

  • Reply
Anonymous    4/7/09

To an extent.


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