An ardent feminist was trying to waste my time and attention, spouting about how the God Emperor was taking away abortion rights.

I asked, how is he doing so, and got the expected screed on the recent EO denying federal funding to organizations that perform abortions, culminating in “and it’s my right.”

I answered: no, it isn’t. No-one has a right to demand that I pay for your choices

The simple reason is that there can be no universal right that requires anyone else to act to provide it to you. There is no right to an abortion, there is no right to health care, there is no right to food, there is not even a right to be given weapons – though there is a right own weapons, and to carry weapons that you own upon your person as a free citizen, if you so choose.

There are rights that are not universal, by mutual contractual or voluntarily taken obligations – an officer has the right to order his troops into near certain death because that is the oath those troops swore upon enlisting, and even those orders have limits as to what constitutes a legitimate order. A man may not be allowed to enter a private club unless he is a member, and his status and seniority in it may give him the right to demand access to particular rooms, tables, or priority of service. In the past nobles had rights that others didn’t, by law or custom – but again it was limited to said nobility, not available to all people.

All of those rights to demand performance or access from others were codified by law due to power, contract, or status, and limited to a relative few. Any universal right must be a negative right – one that can be obtained by people around you – and the government – doing nothing.

How can there be a “right” to health care if there are no doctors or nurses available to provide it? If they are available, but are already booked up, you do not have a “right” to their time before everyone else. If a doctor decides to quit his practice and become a carpenter, you do not have a right to demand he drop his work to attend to you.

Yes, yes, I know, emergencies, first aid, etc. – but the point stands. If two people are bleeding out, and there’s only one doctor, or person to provide aid, who does he attend? It’s his judgement on how to best save one or both, and what is possible with the time and resources at hand, not yours.

In the end, regardless of whether or not one agrees with or disagrees with abortion, birth control pills, or gasoline, I can choose to allocate time and money to obtain those which I find moral, but no one has the right to demand that others pay for me to obtain them.