Explainer: Rights or Riots - Why your property rights matter

FAN | Jul 26, 2021
Property rights are a way of agreeing on who has what rights to which property. They are human rights like any other and must be defended.

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Explainer: Rights or Riots - Why your property rights matter
Explainer: Rights or Riots - Why your property rights matter

Property rights are a way of agreeing on who has what rights to which property. 

Make no mistake, property rights are human rights. Protecting them is one of the most important functions of the state. You must ensure that your state protects your property rights and not undermine them.

 

 

Transcript

 

What are property rights and why do they matter?

Put simply, property rights are a way of agreeing on who has what rights to which property.

Imagine that you own a house in a society which does not have formal property rights.

In such a society, you would always have to stay close to your house to defend it – or else somebody could come along and simply take over your house or demolish it. You can't stop them by saying "That's my property!" because it won't really be...

In contrast, a formal property right makes it clear that you are the owner of the house and that nobody may interfere with it without your permission – even when you are away.

But clearly, property rights alone are not enough for you to control your property. You need someone to have your back when it comes to property rights. In most countries, this is the state.

The state protects your property rights in three ways:

Through laws that establish the rules,
Courts that interpret and apply those rules, and
Police that protects your property, for example when it is threatened by thieves, looters or rioters.

Individual property rights are vital because they form the foundation of personal freedom. They allow you to work for and earn wealth and protect yourself against economic risks and those who mean you harm – including the state itself.

They are essential for building prosperous societies because they let you keep ownership of your property even when you are not near it; they allow you to change or improve it; sell it and use as collateral if you want to borrow money.

Make no mistake, property rights are human rights. Protecting them is one of the most important functions of the state. You must ensure that your state protects your property rights and not undermine them.

 

Your freedom is worth fighting for. Join FAN today to build a new tomorrow.

 

 

Illustration sources available here.

 

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