...someone with x-ray glasses doesn't have a right to my body, so he's violating an individual right.
So far as I know, my understanding of rights is in agreement with Ayn Rand's (I got all of the basic concepts from her). You do have a right to your body. To be more precise you have many rights that relate to your body.
Rights are best thought of as a bundle of defined actions that a person can take relative to a specific entity without anyone's permission. You have a moral right to breath (an action you can take relative to your body that needs no permission). Rand was clear in saying that moral rights only pertain to actions. For an example of a bundle of actions: I own my car (it is my property) and my property is best thought of as a bundle of actions I can take that require no one's permission relative to that object - the car (I can start it, drive it, sell it, repair it, etc.) If it were a rental car, my property - my bundle of rights - would be fewer. I would have the right to possess it, but only during a specified time period and only if I'm paid up on the rent, I have the right to drive it, but not the right to sell it, etc.
In the absence of any contractual relationship to the contrary, you are the only one with a bundle of rights (set of actions) relative to your body. You are the only owner of your body.
Rand was clear in saying that the only way an individual right could be violated was through force, threat of force, fraud or theft (because those are the only way to abrogate choice. And rights don't just arise from man's life, but also from choice, which he must use to support that life).
Now, can you tell me which of the actions that make up your bundle of rights to your body have been violated via force, threat of force, fraud or theft when the person looks at you with the x-ray glasses? That is where I get hung up. For example, if a powerful person squeezed me, against my will, so hard that I couldn't breath we could see the action that I have by right that is being denied and we can see the use of force that is the act of violation.
If we imagine that x-ray glasses were to be invented next year, then I imagine that within weeks you would be able to buy underwear that blocked the x-ray function. Kind of like glass windows and window shades.
Are these examples consistent with Objectivism if no force was involved? I will say if no device was involved, then it would take an act force to accomplish the same goal. The devices in these examples are clearly being used to circumvent using force.
That's an excellent argument. But, if I rent a car, I can drive it - even though I don't own it. It wouldn't make sense to say that the 'rental process' was a way to circumvent the use of force. The rental process is mutually consensual. It involves choice on both sides. The x-ray glasses and mind reading don't involve choice on both sides. But what is taken (if nothing is taken there is no theft or fraud or extortion)? What is being prohibited that would otherwise be open to choice (threat of force)? What action that one has a right to is being denied (force)?
I think that you would have to say that (in the case of x-ray glasses) that somehow the image of an unclothed body is property (part of a bundle of rights) and that the viewing of that body by another without their choice (and no trespass or force in use) is denying them some action they would otherwise be able to take.
I am arguing in the fashion of a Devil's advocate since in my heart I think that individual rights (based more on the issue of choice than anything else) should exclude mind-reading at a distance devices that use no coersive or damaging force or physical trespass. Maybe that one is just an issue of theft of ideas. But the x-ray glasses.... that's more of a borderline issue.
In the case of moral philosophy, what we are doing is what should happen - chewing on borderline issues to help clarify the concepts. But the law can't have a grey area. It has to take the best moral principle stating individual rights and define specific laws that prohibit any action that would violate the stated moral right (action or actions). For the law, I clearly agree with Bill Dwyer that it should be defined in terms of recognized property rights and it would require some kind of theft or trespass as a violation. Better to have people use window shades if they choose to have windows then to make laws against looking through a window as you walk by on public property or from your own property.