Thursday, May 22, 2008

Do we own our lives?

What does it mean to own our lives? Often in discussions on euthanasia (or less weighty tattoos) the argument that we own our bodies and so we can do what we want with them is made. And, at least on the surface, it seems like a reasonable claim. I can do what I want with my body as long as it doesn't harm another just like I can use my comic books how I see fit right up to the point where I use them to give someone a thousand paper cuts and they bleed to death. But what about the facts about our lives? Do we own our address as our address? Or our age? Or our social security number? Bruce Schneier has an interesting commentary on the need for a personal data privacy law, but without a clear understanding of what we can actually own, I'm not sure what can be done. I'm going to chew on this one for a bit.

The Rational Moderate

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