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In the course of this book we have ranged over a large number of questions concerning rights. We have also seen how those questions have been answered in a variety of different and conflicting ways. Diversity is a feature of people’s ideas about rights just as it is a feature of human cultures. Some debates about rights have been contests between the friends and the enemies of rights, but quarrels amongst the proponents of rights have been just as conspicuous and just as significant. How should the existence of those disagreements affect our thinking about rights? Can we take rights seriously if they are subject to doubt and dispute of this sort? Whatever we might think about the merits of opposing ideas about rights, does not the very existence of those opposing ideas do something to discredit all theories of rights and to undermine the practical aspirations of their proponents?
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