Vices are not Crimes

A Vindication of Moral Liberty

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Published: 1875
Language: English
Wordcount: 11,496 / 33 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 48
LoC Categories: B, K
Downloads: 927
Added to site: 2009.09.09
mnybks.net#: 25239
Excerpt

possessed as individuals. Now, nobody but a fool or an impostor pretends that he, as an individual, has a right to punish other men for their vices. But anybody and everybody have a natural right, as individuals, to punish other men for their crimes; for everybody has a natural right, not only to defend his own person and property against aggressors, but also to go to the assistance and defence of everybody else, whose person or property is invaded. The natural right of each individual to defend his own person and property against an aggressor, and to go to the assistance and defence of every one else whose person or property is invaded, is a right without which men could not exist on the earth. And government has no rightful existence, except in so far as it embodies, and is limited by, this natural right of individuals. But the idea that each man has a natural right to decide what are virtues, and what are vices -- that is, what contributes to that neighbors happiness, and what do not -- and to pun

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