You probably own your car.
You may own your house.
And you almost certainly own your shoes and whatever else you're wearing. Especially your underwear. (I hope!)
Ownership implies more than just "having" something. It means that it is your choice to have it.
Ownership implies that you have the option to dispose of whatever asset it is that you own.
It implies that you have the ability and the right to un-own it.
You could take your watch off and give it to a charity thrift store, if you wish.
Indeed, you could take your socks and shoes off and throw them in the garbage (but at least keep your underwear on- for all our sakes).
You own those things, and so you can do with them what you wish.
That's within reason, of course. There are limits to your right to terminate ownership of some things, especially big-ticket items like boats and cars and houses.
You can't just sink your boat or set fire to your house or throw your car over an embankment. That would be illegal, mostly because any of those disposal methods could constitute hazards to other people.
And there are concerns that you may actually be doing something other than simply disposing of something you own - like trying to defraud an insurance company, or depriving someone of payment of a debt, like a mortgage (which underlines the fact that most people don't really own their homes, the bank does).
But there are realistic ways of disposing of your vehicle, for instance, that would assert your right of ownership. You could give it away. Or you could sell it for scrap metal - even if it was brand new and in perfect running order.
There are ways to get rid of your house, too - or at least, the portion of it that you do own.
These things are yours, and you can make them stop being yours, if you wish.
The ability to relinquish ownership at your own discretion is one sure test of ownership.
And by that test, the BC Supreme Court recently gave you something you previously didn't have. By striking down the Canadian Criminal Code's prohibition against doctorassisted suicide, the BC Supreme Court gave you and all Canadians right of ownership of your self, albeit with strings attached.
Prior to that ruling which maintained that the law violated rights of the terminally ill to a death with dignity, you were owned by the Government of Canada (I know that may come as a bit of a shock to the religious types who have been happily living under the delusion that they were owned by one or another god).
But the government isn't giving you up without a fight. It wants you back. A battery of lawyers has been assigned to restore its ownership of you. The feds maintain that, regardless of the condition of your self, no matter how decrepit your self may be or how much difficulty it may be causing you, you do not have the right to dispose of it at your own discretion.
There's a lot at stake here, and the questions being probed are difficult ones.
For instance, while the jury may be out on your soul, it's been established that your consciousness is dependent on your body being in at least marginally operational condition.
And regardless of who actually owns it, it's pretty clear that every body suffers from a profound case of built-in obsolescence.
Indeed, the most government lawyers can achieve is controlling interest, with an option to extend the contract beyond what the user may deem its period of functional practicality.
Dignity be damned.
@ Copyright 2013