been secured for everyone, loss of additional wealth is less likely to hinder inquiry than loss of liberty. Accordingly, as affluence increases, there seem to be good reasons for weighing liberty more and more heavily relative to competing values. These reasons may be overridden on occasion, and perhaps properly so, but they seem at least sufficient to shift the burden of proof to those who would constrain liberty in particular cases.
Rights arise from the equal claims of individuals to some level of possession of a fundamental or primary good. Liberty is such a good. However, the right to liberty, like other fundamental rights, is a prima facie right. In cases of conflict, it sometimes is proper that it give way. But the right to liberty should give way only to other claims of right, not to the maximization of utility, the glory of the nation state, the claims of religious orthodoxy or current standards of offensiveness or personal preferences and tastes of the majority. Where liberty clashes with other rights, the other rights usually are those to the economic or material prerequisites of an at least minimally decent human existence. In such cases, the conflict is to be adjudicated by the democratic process suitably constrained by requirements of justice, compromise and desire to reconcile competing claims without allowing any one kind of right to be completely subordinated.