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Quote 853

Judgment is given to men that they may use it. Because it may be used erroneously, are men to be told that they ought not to use it at all?

   --  John Stuart Mill

What is a ban?

An official or legal prohibition:

Types of bans

You can ban...
  • Activities people do
  • Things people ingest
  • How people express themselves
  • Things people possess

Why are things banned?

Look at the moral atmosphere today. Every-thing enjoyable, from cigarettes to sex to ambition to the profit motive, is considered depraved or sinful.. Just to prove that a thing makes men happy- and you have dammed it.

   --  Ayn Rand

The reason why things are banned. People in power can't tell who will use them responsibly.
"I'm not Santa Claus. I can't figure out who's naughty and who's nice," he said. "So we went ahead and banned all of them."
Responsible users
  • If no-one uses a banned item, there is no need to ban
  • If everyone is responsible with the banned item, there is no need to ban
  • If everyone uses the banned item the ban will be repealed ban, or not enforced
Of those users that use the banned item, and are irreponsible
Harm and effects

  • If the banned item is harmless, why is it banned??????
  • If the banned item is voluntarily taken and only harms the user that should be the users choice
  • If the banned item harms others then there will be laws that do/should reflect that.
Banning is an archaiac Victorian attitude, that has very little relevance in the 21st century


"Public misunderstanding, ignorance and possibly contempt for liberty play into the hands of people who want to control our lives."
"One of the least-understood functions of private property rights is that of determining who may harm whom in what ways."
"If we banned or restricted all activities that affect, harm or have the possibility of harming other people, it wouldn't be a very nice life."

Has banning ever worked?

Prohibition doesn't work
Clearly not every kind of act that causes harm to others can be rightly prohibited.

Banning things is a growth industry