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Are there such things as natural rights? Discussion with respect to the political thought of John Locke. - Essay Example

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Masters
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Philosophy
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Natural Rights and John Locke Are there any such things as natural rights? Discuss with respect to the political thought of John Locke. 1. Introduction to Natural Rights Rights are normative fundamental rules that delineate what people are allowed to do and what is owed to the people…

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Are there such things as natural rights? Discussion with respect to the political thought of John Locke.

There are a number of different perspectives on rights that have evolved over time and are now used to deal with this issue. One of these perspectives on rights is that of natural rights that has gained currency over centuries. Any rights that are not dependent on laws, beliefs, culture, customs, government or other such features and are thus universal and inalienable in nature are better known as natural rights. These rights stand in contrast to legal rights that are bestowed on an individual through the authority of the law or through a political or legal framework. In this sense, these legal rights are relative and specific within the context of the culture and government implementing them. Natural rights on the other hand are universal and inalienable and do not require any frameworks to support themselves (Strauss, 1953). The domain of natural law is closely associated and is considered an extension to natural rights. The theory of natural law was used to challenge the divine rights of kings during the Age of Enlightenment. The domain of natural rights was used to provide justification for and to establish government, social contract as well as positive law that in turn provided for legal rights through classical republicanism. ...
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