The Nature and Source of Individual Rights
It is widely believed that rights are products either of divine decree or of social consensus, but, as Ayn Rand demonstrated, this is a false alternative.
Rights are factual requirements of human life: man can prosper only in a society that respects the rights of the individual.
The following three essays by Ayn Rand examine the nature, source, and meaning of rights.
These philosophic essays have tremendous relevance—as much today as when they were first written.
This essay explains the fundamental nature of rights, the facts of reality that give rise to them, and what in essence they mean (and don’t mean) in practice.
This essay shows why rights apply only to individuals, not to groups or collectives of people, and why acceptance of the notion of group “rights” necessarily leads to the violation of individual rights.
This essay explains, in fundamental terms, what a government is, why government is necessary to a civilized society, and why a proper government must be constitutionally limited to the function of protecting, not violating, the rights of the individual.
Miss Ayn Rand discusses metaphysics and rights; the meaning of human survival; capitalism and the handicapped; and whether government has rights.
Miss Rand discusses the importance of a written constitution; a republic vs. a democracy; the nature of America’s checks and balances;
electoral re-apportionment and “one-man-one-vote” amending the Constitution.