Saturday, October 26, 2013

Legally Mandated Paid Sick Days Violates Rights and Proper Purpose of Government

In the Star-Ledger's editorial promoting mandated paid sick days, the editors concluded by stating that "Sick time should be a universal right."

I left these comments:

Sick time is not a right, no matter how much anyone wishes it to be so. Rights are not arbitrary constructs created on political whim.  

Rights are objective moral concepts derived from the observable factual requirements of human nature. Since man must rationally act to survive and thrive, it follows that he must be free to act on his own rational judgment. A right is a guarantee to freedom of action in a social context. Rights are not an automatic guarantee to material benefits that others must provide. A proper government provides only a guarantee that each individual will be free from the initiation of physical force by other individuals—i.e., protection from criminals, fraudsters, extortionists, etc.—including other individuals in their capacity as government officials

Mandatory sick pay subverts legitimate government. If citizen A is forced to provide benefits such as employee sick pay to citizen B, citizen A's right to act on his judgment is violated. Jersey City's proposed law is therefore legalized criminality. Legalized criminality turns the government into an armed aggressor against legally disarmed private victims—the very citizens whose liberties the government is designed to protect. But the government should not be the enemy of the people. It should be their servant. The purpose of rights is to free people from force, and the purpose of government is to protect peoples' rights—every man and woman's rights, including businessmen.

Terms of employment are rightfully and only a matter of voluntary, mutually beneficial contract between employer and employee. The government's only job is to protect contract rights, not impose contract terms.

Related Reading:

Mandated Paid Parental Leave, Too?

Mandated Paid Sick Days, too?

Man's Rights—by Ayn Rand

The Nature of Government—by Ayn Rand

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