We explain the difference between rights and responsibilities with table. We have all seen people make the common mistake and we could have made it ourselves to confuse the terms rights and responsibilities. You see, both terms are very important in the legal sector, and not only there, anyone who wants to have an educated conversation or a properly structured debate, should and should know the debate between rights and responsibilities.
When we speak of rights, we speak of rules, regulations, and social norms that are allowed to citizens and residents of a country, state, or immediately politically governed area owed to them by the legal system, the local government body. .
Again, when we talk about responsibilities, we are talking about the commitment of a citizen or person who lives in the political sphere with society, the legal system and the governing body of that place. So the difference between rights and responsibilities is that rights are the privileges and assignments that are granted to citizens and responsibilities are the duty that citizens are expected to fulfill.
Comparison table between rights and responsibilities
|Owed by||The legal body / governing body||Citizens / residents of a politically determined area|
|Enjoyed by||The citizens||Society in general|
|Legal conflict||May be subject to legal conflict / contested in court.||It is usually not subject to many conflicts.|
|Nature||It can change according to the collective opinion of the society.||Stays generally static.|
|Application demographics||Sometimes some rights apply only to specific groups.||The responsibilities are applicable to the entire population. There may be some rare exceptions.|
What are rights?
Rights are the benefits and allowances that a given governing body owes to citizens, residents, and the people they govern. These rights generally exist in democracies and, in such cases, are protected by the constitution. Any changes that need to occur must be challenged in court, and if the court decides in favor of the case, only then is the law changed.
Rights can be divided into various categories in various ways, the most common being natural rights or rights that no human being has created or can change. This includes the right to life. The right to life tells us that every human being has the right to life, and it is a criminal offense if someone takes away this right from another person.
Similarly, there are legal rights, which are defined in the constitution. The constitution could also take the liberty of assigning various penalties to the violation of rights, and this includes the violation of natural rights.
So another feature of rights is that they can also apply to selective groups. A well-known example is the prevailing seat reservation system in educational institutions, government jobs for people belonging to registered castes, registered tribes and other backward classes. The main reason for doing so is that they have historically been oppressed and therefore enjoy this right to stand out and catch up with the wider society.
However, we cannot write a paragraph about rights and not talk about fundamental rights. Fundamental rights are the rights that every democratic constitution guarantees to every citizen bound by it. They generally vary from country to country, but mostly contain rights such as the right to equality, the right to liberty, the right to exploitation, the right to property, the right to constitutional remedies, etc. Fundamental rights are always valid but can be suspended when the nation is in a state of emergency.
What are the responsibilities?
Responsibilities are the civil duties that each citizen is supposed to fulfill. These responsibilities are believed to help make the country a peaceful and suitable place to live. Rights and responsibilities are often complementary and one is the derivation of the other. Take it this way, the constitution gives citizens the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, in return, citizens have a responsibility to support and defend the constitution.
If we have a proper look, then we see that one cannot be without the other. If the constitution did not grant the rights of liberty to citizens, it would end in an unsatisfied and unhappy society, which would eventually descend into anarchy, hence the right to liberty. Now that the constitution has granted citizens this right, citizens are striving to uphold the constitution, as its collapse would result in a state of lawlessness again.
Therefore, rights and responsibilities, although significantly different, are necessary and complementary to each other. They are opposite sides of the same coin.
However, the main beneficiary of these responsibilities is society in general. No one is above the law, and therefore when someone serves the constitution, they do not serve any individual or any group of individuals. They support the people who made this constitution, the people. This is especially prevalent in democracies. Hence the Abraham Lincoln quote, “Democracy belongs to, by and for the people.”
Main differences between rights and responsibilities
- The main difference between rights and responsibilities is that the governing body owes the rights to the people and the people have the responsibilities to the society or the country.
- Rights are enjoyed by citizens, while the benefits of responsibilities are enjoyed by the general population.
- Rights can be subject to legal conflicts, while responsibilities are not usually.
- Rights can be changed if society feels that it is wrong or that it does not deserve it. The responsibilities, however, generally do not face such problems.
- Rights may be exclusive to specific groups. Responsibilities are primarily valid across all demographics.
Rights and responsibilities are two very important needs for the proper functioning of society. As stated above, both are complementary to each other and are essentially two sides of the same coin.
Rights ensure that the individual citizen gets equality, opportunities, and is on the same level as everyone else and lives a happy life, and responsibilities ensure that society is kept in order and that nothing falls into chaos. The perfect synchronization of the two leads to a harmonious society.