The principle of non-aggression is tightly bound to unalienable and inalienable rights, altogether individual rights. The Non-Aggression Principle (NAP) says that no one has the right to initiate force against another except in true self-defence. Sadly, few people understand that the phrase ‘human rights’ actually means group rights; whereby some have rights and others have not. This discrepancy permits violation of a person’s life. On the other hand, ‘individual rights’ protect against all trespass.
In a recent article, ’The lost (and recovered) history of the non-aggression principle,’ Foster Gamble, stresses that individual rights are crucial to establishing the non-aggression principle. In his accompanying video, Gamble speaks of non-violation—
‘I believe that non violation is the true north of humanities moral compass, and our core navigating insight. I had always gone along with the view that more people will thrive if we consider the groups need above the individual’s. But when I took a closer look I found it doesn’t really work that way.’ —Foster Gamble
Gamble is right. It does not work that way. As though taking several leaves out of my book, ‘Law from Within,’ Gamble speaks further of a great transformation that would result if ‘individual rights’ were implemented.
‘This is the compass by which humanity could build a truly sustainable and thriving condition for all beings on Earth. I believe it is enlightenment boiled down to the primary guideline for human relating. It doesn’t make anyone do anything, but it claims the right for everyone to protect themselves and others from rape, assault, murder, theft, fraud and counterfeit — even if the violation is by a so-called “government” or its tax collecting “authority.” —Foster Gamble
Describing the non-aggression principle as a ‘Liberty Perspective,’ he includes an (internet) list of its history, as ‘unveiled by courageous and dedicated philosophers of virtually every era and from all over the world.’ Gamble relates how this list ‘had been taken down by some nefarious “editor,” who apparently didn’t want this awareness of the thread of freedom thinking through the centuries to be commonly available.’ I agree Gamble’s request that we inspect that list and file it for reference.
Non-aggression equals ‘no trespass’
The core of such ‘liberty perspective’ as Gamble speaks of lies in natural law, specifically Creator’s ‘natural law of no trespass,’ modelled within our very being. Its source is twofold. First, our free will cannot alter the process of our subconscious mind. Second, our subconscious mind cannot overrule our free will; else it would not be free. Neither can violate the other’s functioning. Translate this law of our Creator into societal terms, and our own life is reciprocal of respect for the lives of others; hence no trespass and no initiated violence is permissible.
The key to human justice is always guarding the wholeness of each individual human being — not sacrificing individual rights “for the good of the group.” This ruse — which underlies socialism, communism, fascism and even democracy — has led not only to vast human suffering and death, but also to the brink of extinction of life as we know it on our planet. —Foster Gamble
The simple truth is that group rights (human rights ) cannot permit individual rights. Is this taught today? No, for it would shatter the myth that the ‘collective’ is supreme. Governments would topple, whence liberty and natural justice would spring forth.
No initiated violence
Ayn Rand, one of the listed authors, makes a valid point.
‘No man may initiate the use of physical force against others. No man—or group or society or government—has the right to assume the role of a criminal and initiate the use of physical compulsion against any man. Men have the right to use physical force only in retaliation and only against those who initiate its use. The principle is: no man may obtain any values from others by resorting to physical force.’ —Ayn Rand
Forfeit of freedom
Some advocates of the non-aggression principle claim that violent force is moral when used in self-defence. For the sake of clear understanding, ‘initiated force’ must be distinguished from ‘retaliatory force,’ being that which arrests initiated harm. Any force that defends our right to life is morally lawful. Depending on severity, arrest of that aggression may occasion violence. Nonetheless, termination of all harm including rape, assault, murder, theft, fraud, blackmail and counterfeiting is morally justifiable.
Most importantly, one who violates another life voluntarily forfeits their rights and their freedom. By their own choice, they become victims of their harmful actions, since the only harm they have a moral right to choose, is their own. In that sense, the non-aggression principle fails to address the ‘right to life principle.’ This phrase is a timely subject for my next post.
Meanwhile, I agree with Gamble that as more and more people are waking to the idiotic notion of a few ruling all others, so today’s authoritarian political structures and underlying premises should be ethically and morally called into question. No trespass means none, government included. Individual rights are crucial in this regard. See the Declaration of Individual Rights – Articles 1 & 2 in the Constitution of Man.
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