Editor, Daily Nexus,
Monday’s piece by Karla Rosa against the practices of Cedarwood/Coronado/Conquest (“A.S.-Nexus Feud Draws Attention Away from Cedarwood” Daily Nexus, Jan. 29) highlighted the error in the protesters’ argument nicely. Rosa made the claim that the families that were evicted had a right to live in their previous housing and that Conquest violated said rights. Rosa should review her natural rights literature from Locke up to Rothbard. No one has a right to the use anyone else’s property. In the case at hand, the evictees were living in the apartments as part of an agreement that existed between Conquest and the families; Conquest received money and the families received housing. Conquest owned the apartments and the families were able to live there in virtue of that fact and the consent of Conquest. Conquest decided to end the agreement, so the tenants had to leave. It’s as simple as that.
Imagine that you decide to rent out a room in your home to someone. You and he agree on the amount to be paid per month and he moves in. For whatever reason, sometime later you no longer want him to be living there. The reason for your change of mind is irrelevant; you might need the room to house your grandmother with dementia or you might just think that the guy smells really bad. No matter the reason, you have the right to cease to allow the tenant use your room at any time, just has he has the right to stop paying rent as soon as he wishes to move. To be consistent with Rosa’s claims of universal housing rights, one would have to say that the smelly tenant had a right to live in your home, on your property, and that you did not have a right to kick him out of your property. This goes against everything the theory of natural rights that she invokes holds; one has absolute control over who can and cannot use their own property.
There is no justification of pursuing legal action against Conquest as no rights have been transgressed.