A social right – more commonly referred to in the collective, as "rights" – is a freedom or entitlement granted by one party to another party. Rights define what people are allowed to do in various contexts.
Where party A is granting a particular set of rights to party B, this is equivalent to saying that:
- party A will not interfere with party B's exercise of their rights
- party A will prevent others from interfering with party B's exercise of their rights
This implies that party A actually has the power to carry out item #2. A right which cannot be exercised is essentially meaningless.
- Marketists will often claim that
- an unexercised right is still a right, in support of arguments against the need for government as an enforcer of rights.
- rights are not created by humans, but in fact derive from nature ("natural rights")