If there’s a conservative-minded bumper sticker I see all the time, it’s this: “Freedom isn’t free.”
This slogan is usually used to show support for the armed forces or a given war and whether you’re a fan of military service or support one of the wars in which we’re either currently or previously engaged is irrelevant right now. The slogan itself is flat out incorrect.
In a recent article, Slappy defined what a right is. If you haven’t read it, I suggest you do, as I am going to build off the ideas he explored there. A right is inherent to your humanity. Geographic location does not change which rights are granted to you. The time period in which you are born does not change these rights either.
Now of course rights can be taken away. Coercive forms of government do a good job of taking rights away. Compare the United States to North Korea. Americans have more rights than North Koreans because the American government has taken fewer rights away than the totalitarian government of North Korea. So it’s logical to say you are born with your rights.
If you are born with your rights, freedom being included as one of these rights, why would you have to earn them? Does your country of birth determine which rights you have and which must be earned? If so, does that mean that all men are not created equal?
Furthermore, if freedom is acquired through war, the soldiers fighting and the politicians administering the war would be the source of the freedom. That would then mean that those people could refuse to grant any rights they bestow on the rest of the citizenry.
Freedom is free. It can be taken away, but getting it back is a restoration of previous freedom already owed to each individual.
Here’s a quick and easy example to sum things up. You have some money stolen from you. Another person happens to find the stolen money somewhere and returns it to you. This person who gives you the money back is not the source of your income. You already had the income and the returned money was already rightfully yours to begin with.
Understand the source of your freedoms and rights so that you can be quicker to pick out those who falsely claim to be the source.