What the Liberal State Should Tolerate Within Its Borders

Canadian Journal of Philosophy 37 (4):479-513 (2007)
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Two normative principles of toleration are offered, one individual-regarding, the other group-regarding. The first is John Stuart Mill’s harm principle; the other is “Principle T,” meant to be the harm principle writ large. It is argued that the state should tolerate autonomous sacrifices of autonomy, including instances where an individual rationally chooses to be enslaved, lobotomized, or killed. Consistent with that, it is argued that the state should tolerate internal restrictions within minority groups even where these prevent autonomy promotion of members of the group. Finally, it is argued that toleration excludes external protections of minority groups.
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