My very Progressive program Politics Done Right has a substantial number of Conservative listeners. One of them called in about healthcare and likely did not get the response he expected.
A Conservative, Brad, called into Politics Done Right to challenge the constitutionality of healthcare as a right. He got more than he bargained for quickly.
Conservative schooled on the constitutionality of health care as a right
“I hear you and others at that station say health care is a right,” a caller named Brad asked. “Am I correct about that?”
I confirmed that he was correct about what we stood for at our Progressive station KPFT 90.1 FM Houston.
“Maybe I just skimmed too quickly,” Brad said. “But when I read the constitution, I didn’t see the word healthcare. So how is it a right?”
I pointed out that the Constitution alluded to it when it speaks about the “general welfare.” I told him that people who always use the Constitution literally are usually trying to restrict one’s rights. Others take an expansive view of the constitution to give as many human rights possible.
I made it very clear that I cherished humanity more so than the piece of paper written over a couple hundred years ago. I explained some unfortunate truths about the constitution.
- Women did not get the right to vote until 1920 with the 19th amendment.
- Black people were considered three-fifths of a person.
- Under current interpretation, an artificial entity. a corporation is given many of the same rights given to an American human being.
I told the caller that I err on the side of humanity, not the literal words of the Constitution.
Later the caller wanted to assure me that he was not the TEA Party type. I made it clear that I did not care because my goal is not to preach to the choir but to those who need to be convinced or converted.
Many Conservatives tend to listen to my show or watch it on Facebook Live. It was clear that a seed was planted; That is how we change minds, one at a time by engaging respectfully.
Watch the entire episode of the show here.
Right on Egberto. You have provided me with another phrase from our Constitution, that I can use to remind many what we are trying to do as a Civil Society. – Niel
Silly arguments from both the conservative and the liberal host. Ultimately it comes down to the fact that one can’t have a right to something that someone else MUST work to provide, as this is called involuntary servitude. There is no right to healthcare, roads, police, etc… You have a right to act within the boundaries of initiating force or fraud on others, but there is no right to compel anyone to do anything for you.
I agree the constitution is nonsense ultimately, but my guess is if it were dictating healthcare for all, the host would be praising it from the mountaintop. Luckily, the framers at least understood (partially) the difference between positive and negative rights. Bonus points: Go back to the first paragraph up top and derive why the constitution is invalid based on the concept of negative rights.
So many these days think in such concrete terms and are incapable of using abstract principles, must less ensuring their principles are non-contradictory. The host is one of these concrete type mentalities. I suggest he read some Lysander Spooner, Rothbard, Hoppe, etc…