My philosophy is based on the principle of self-ownership. You own your life.

To deny this is to imply that another person has a higher claim on your life than you do. No other person, or group of persons, owns your life nor do you own the lives of others. You exist in time: future, present, and past. This is manifest in life, liberty, and the product of your life and liberty. The exercise of choices over life and liberty is your prosperity. To lose your life is to lose your future. And to lose the product of your life and liberty is to lose the portion of your past that produced it.

A product of your life and liberty is your property. Property is the fruit of your labour, the product of your time, energy, and talents. It is that part of nature that your turn to valuable use. And it is the property of others that is given to you by voluntary exchange and mutual consent. Two people who exchange property voluntarily are both better off or they wouldn't do it. Only they may rightfully make that decision for themselves.

At times some people use force or fraud to take from others without willful, voluntary consent. Normally, the initiation of force to take life is murder, to take liberty is slavery, and to take property is theft. It is the same whether these actions are done by one person acting alone, by the many acting against a few, or even by officials with fine hats and fancy titles.

You have the right to protect your own life, liberty, and justly acquired property from the forceful aggression of others. So you may rightfully ask others to help protect you. – Ken Schoolland

Source: THT, Kathmandu, June 30, 2012

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