The language of rights is ubiquitous. It shapes the way we
construct our debates over issues such as abortion, affirmative
action and sexual freedom. This provocative new study challenges
the very concept of rights, arguing that they jeopardize our
liberty and undermine democratic debate. By re-conceptualizing our
ideas about limited government, it suggests that we can limit the
reasons or rationales on which the polity may act. Whereas we once
used the language of rights to thwart democratic majorities, Bedi
argues that we should now turn our attention to the democratic
state's reason for acting. This will permit greater democratic
flexibility and discretion while ensuring genuine liberty. Deftly
employing political theory and constitutional law to state its
case, the study radically rethinks the relationship between liberty
and democracy, and will be essential reading for scholars and
students of political and legal philosophy.
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