The right to be left alone (see below) is perhaps a cute and accurate way of rephrasing the one and only right that any and all people ought to have: the right to their life.
I am always deeply saddened when one person asserts a “right” that infringes upon somebody else’s life. Doing so – and being supported in doing so by the state – amounts to enslaving another. I think slavery is bad. Clearly, some people do not.
George Will describes an odd case of gay rights trumping other rights (first amendment, property, the right not to be a slave, I’m not entirely sure, but clearly some other, legitimate right): in this case a photographer is forced to photograph a same-sex wedding even though the photograph is against same-sex wedding. (Note that it really doesn’t matter why the photographer doesn’t want to photograph the wedding. That they don’t want to is enough; they ought not be compelled to do it.)
This seems like it must be a movie or a book but it’s not: it’s real life. Or, in the case of the photograph compelled to photograph the same-sex marriage, it’s real hell.
Here’s Will’s eloquent conclusion:
“The Huguenin case demonstrates how advocates of tolerance become tyrannical. First, a disputed behavior, such as sexual activities between people of the same sex, is declared so personal and intimate that government should have no jurisdiction over it. Then, having won recognition of what Louis Brandeis, a pioneer of the privacy right, called “the right to be let alone,” some who have benefited from this achievement assert a right not to let other people alone. It is the right to coerce anyone who disapproves of the now-protected behavior into acting as though they approve of it, or at least into not acting on their disapproval.
So, in the name of tolerance, government declares intolerable individuals such as the Huguenins, who disapprove of a certain behavior but ask only to be let alone in their quiet disapproval. Perhaps advocates of gay rights should begin to restrain the bullies in their ranks.”