Freedom implies equal rights
July 31, 2014 § 40 Comments
Libertarians and reactionaries coming from a libertarian background tend to make equality subordinate to freedom in their political theories, or in some cases abandon equality entirely in favor of freedom. This doesn’t work, because freedom as a primary political principle implies equality in a context of massive and complex constraints on what people are permitted to do.
Freedom is the capacity to actually choose what we wish to choose. It is incapable of discriminating between good choices and bad choices, so when it is treated as a good in itself it makes discrimination between different kinds of choices impossible. If discrimination between different kinds of choices is impossible it follows that all choices are to be treated as equally valid politically.
So it isn’t really possible to abandon equality and still retain freedom as a guiding political principle. If we do that we’ll just wake up on liberalism’s eternal Groundhog Day all over again.