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Freedom 9

  • Date Submitted: 09/08/2010 09:12 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 46.2 
  • Words: 330
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The follow up to your true statement would be to say that this "freedom to choose what is right for oneself" is established in the Ninth Amendment in the Bill of Rights, and backed up by the Tenth Amendment.

The freedom to choose what is right for oneself comes from the idea of "self-ownership". That has a name: individual sovereignty. That is a revolutionary idea conceived by Jefferson and many of the other Founders, and it means the government is not the "sovereign", nor is a dictator nor a monarch, etc. The "sovereign" is every individual, at least within the confines of the due consent of the governed themselves.

"Individual sovereignty was not a peculiar conceit of Thomas Jefferson: It was the common assumption of the day..." http://www.friesian.com/ellis.htm

James Madison and Patrick Henry and some others would not give their consent to the Bill of Rights until it contained the provision for this, which became the Ninth Amendment. Unfortunately the phrase "individual sovereignty" was not used, and as the governments began to gain more control, the idea was all but lost.

The idea that freedom is not "license" is the Tenth Amendment, which limits what we gain by the Ninth, by telling us that what we may not do is what is what is lawfully given to the governments to do.

In the 20th century, Ayn Rand followed up on the idea of individual sovereignty and freedom and license, when she wrote:

"Individualism regards man—every man—as an independent, sovereign entity who possesses an inalienable right to his own life, a right derived from his nature as a rational being. Individualism holds that a civilized society, or any form of association, cooperation or peaceful coexistence among men, can be achieved only on the basis of the recognition of individual rights—and that a group, as such, has no rights other than the individual rights of its members." http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/indivi…

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