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Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness?

I think that my liberty should not end until it infringes on the liberty of another. What I mean is that I should be legally allowed to do anything I want to or with my body so long as I am not hurting anybody who is not myself. Are there things that you think an adult person should not be legally allowed to do to or with their own body?

By JenBeberstein7
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No victim, no crime.

Minta79 Level 7 Sep 2, 2018

I wish we could all be naked anywhere any time.

Maybe don't masterbate or have sex indiscreetly in public, though.

I love the idea of having the freedom to be naked in public.

@PalacinkyPDX True

I think that would be a mistake. I don't think nudist should be jailed or anything. But your personal saftey would be at risk. You would be a far easier target to a sexual predator.

@KenWG I supposed that it went without saying, that I wish I could SAFELY walk around naked.
In other words, I wish humans weren't creepy assed predators and that the human form was socially acceptable, not taboo or overly sexualized.


Yes and no. You should have the right do whatever you want with your own body. I do believe that. However, sometimes people use hurting themselves as a cry for help. So, where is line between exercising your rights, and destroying yourself?

What came mind when I read your question was a student of mine in high school who was cutting herself on a regular basis. It was a cry for help, and once she got the help and diagnosed as bi-polar, with medication, she was much happier.

I don't know. Difficult question. If we have the right do whatever we want with our body, how would anyone know if we are exercising our rights or hurting ourself because we need help?

linxminx Level 7 Sep 2, 2018

I am not saying we shouldn't try to help people, just that there actions against themselves should not be a crime.


You've been ringing the devil's doorbell again JenBerstein ? ?

If I believed in him, we would be friends. I find all of the gods repulsive so if I die and find out any of them are real, I will be requesting a one way ticket to hell.

I ring and ring and ring, but no one answers.

@JenBeberstein "ringing the devil's doorbell" was a right wing baptist smile038.gif way of describing female masturbation ? I thought everyone knew that reference ... been doing the rounds for a while now ?

@SimonCyrene I have never heard the expression but I am definitely guilty of that on more days than I a not guilty!


The only sticky point I would say is mental illness. Some people arguably need help but cannot vocalize or speak to that. Do we as a society have some responsibility to help someone in pain or inflicting pain on themselves even if they do not want such help? What if the reason they are inflicting such pain is delusional or based on the influence of someone else? Poor information and such. Of course mental illness is a slippery slope. I would say in public there needs to be limits. In private? Go to it....except of course what if children are involved? Does someone who loves you have the right to stop extreme injury or such action you take against yourself? No simple answers.

Quarm Level 6 Feb 1, 2019

I support a woman’s right to choose. I would probably not go through with an abortion, if I were a woman. I would in no way infringe on your right on what to do with your body, or anyone else.

balou Level 8 Nov 26, 2018

I agree totally. My basic rules are; don't hurt anybody, try not to break anything, and have a good time.

Tompain1 Level 7 Sep 2, 2018

I support your thinking... to the degree that you aren’t damaging your body/mind in some way that “I” will later on have to pay for it. Such as: over-indulging in alcohol until you become a diabetic - and can’t affort to pay for your own necessary medical care.


As long as it does not hurt others and I am pro abortion. In the area of pursuit of happiness I believe that every person should have the right to live a life without pain and if that requires providing health insurane to everyone so be it. One cannot be happy ill.

Marine Level 8 Nov 10, 2018

I agree with both of your points!


Interesting question.

Cannot hope to even scratch the surface of it here but I will point out that many societies that fund health-care and general well-being. Many of these societies DO try to convince you to do certain things (exercise, eat well, take parental leave) that will increase the quality of your life, and not do other things (drug-use, smoking, buy assault rifles, etc.) that can have a tendency to put a large burden on everyone else.

One can argue the pros and cons of this approach, but I mention this only to say there may be legitimate arguments for other folks caring about your "liberty".

I appreciate your perspective. In my opinion, creating a financial burden on society would be causing harm to people other than myself.


I completely agree with you @JenBeberstein. If it does not infringe upon another's rights, then it is NO ONE ELSE'S BUSINESS!

Thank you!


I don't have many limits at all, but I draw the line at extreme mutilation. I've seen people do things to themselves that make scenes from horror movies look tame, and if I had anything to say about what they did, I would not allow them to do that. I would allow them to commit suicide, but I would not allow them to cut their arm open to show people their still living arteries. I'm pretty damn liberal, but I'm not that liberal. No.


For the most part i don't believe in victimless crime. However there's alway a limit. Public sex/masturbation is probly one of the exceptions I have in mind. Or anything that fall in the line of public endangerment.

KenWG Level 3 Nov 26, 2018

my mom always said "my right to swing my arm ends at your nose." implied: short of your nose, my arm is free. some people see abortion as an exception here because of the involvement of another entity, but a first-trimester fetus is not a person. it's a clump of cells with no functioning nerve endings and no sentience. that means technically it is a parasite (and yes, if you want the baby, then it's a baby; it's a baby even when it's a twinkle in your eye, and an emotional attachment is a good thing, and good for you, but that's your decision for yourself and cannot be made for anyone else -- and that's the general "you," not you, jen, specifically) and a woman has a right to defend herself against a parasite. that is the only exception i can think of that SOME people might cite, but it is not one that i count. i still think of a pregnant woman, at least in the first trimester, as ONE person, and my mom's saying still holds. for myself, i can think of no exceptions to her saying.


p.s. i see someone has mentioned animals. of course the "you" in the saying includes animals. i am not, however, a vegetarian. but even an animal killed for food doesn't need to be tortured.

genessa Level 8 Sep 5, 2018

By hurting anybody do you mean only humans? I think there could be an argument that torture of intelligent animals should not be allowed. What about “property rights” do you believe in those? There are many compromises people must make to be accepted into a tribe or nation, and the nations have divvied up all the available property so we have to compromise. I used to think it “should” be different, but now I mostly accept it.

Lauxa Level 5 Sep 2, 2018

Agree 100%

Coldo Level 8 Sep 2, 2018

Thank you!


Inflicting self harm might not be a great thing, but everything else you said is true.



Sticks48 Level 9 Sep 2, 2018

You should have the right to do whatever you want with your body so long as you're not hurting anybody who is not yourself.

The interpretation of what constitutes harm to someone else due to your actions is wherein lies the usual rub I'd guess.

Umbral Level 8 Sep 2, 2018

I agree that you should be legally allowed to do anything that doesn't harm another. I think there are many immoral things that can be done that should be legal.

sfvpool Level 7 Sep 2, 2018

What kinds of things do you have in mind? I'm afraid to answer because my imagination doesn't usually run to weird stuff.

Drugs, prostitution, self harm up to and including suicide. I should not be criminally prosecuted for harming only myself. If I choose to chop off my own leg, no harm - if I try to claim on a dismemberment insurance policy after intentionally maiming myself, harm.

@JenBeberstein There is or can be a cost to society for the drug usage. LSD trips from my childhood come to mind. Now the prostitution, I like the way the Germans do it, legal and regulated. Self harm can be an issue, it has mental health connections. Now suicide I think should be legal with some regulations. You don't want dead bodies showing up where they shouldn't or not being found for an extended period of time.

@HippieChick58 If I am not harming society, should I be allowed to use whatever drugs I choose? Prostitution would be safest and healthiest if it were legal and regulated. If I engage in self harm without being a drain on society, why is it wrong? Suicide attempt should incur mental evaluations, not criminal charges. I am specifically speaking of doing no harm while I use or abuse my own body in whatever ways I choose.

@JenBeberstein The drug issue happens because so many drugs are illegally obtained or created. There is quite a bunch of money to be made in illicit drugs, that is the cost to society. I'm all for legal, regulated prostitution. If you are going to self harm you have to be where no one else can be effected, no children involved or witnessing. And yes, suicide as I said should be legal and assisted and definitely should not have criminal charges.

@HippieChick58 thank you for your in depth replies. I am not trying to disagree or be confrontational, I am only trying to understand other people's perspectives.

@JustKip There were a few bodies scraped off pavements, trips to ERs or morgues.


Unless you're a , none I can think of.
I also thing a person should have a right to choose not to live.

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